It makes sense that the only thing original on TV on Independence Day would be Macy’s 4th Of July Fireworks Spectacular (1.5/7) and that’s all there was. Expanding to two hours this year from the 9 PM to 10 PM of previous celebrations, the explosions and eye-popping displays over NYC’s Hudson River were down 17% from last year’s 1.8 among adults 18-49. However in the 9 PM to 10 PM hour, this year’s fireworks were actually up a slight 6% among adults 18-49 from 2012’s results in preliminary ratings. With tunes from Jimi Hendrix, Frank Sinatra, Kanye West, Voice judge Blake Shelton among others and four by musical curator Usher himself, the event also saw a 9% upward turn in viewership from last year’s 8.116 million to 8.835 million in the 9 PM to 10 PM slot. That’s the best the Macy’s fireworks have done in the hour since NBC started broadcasting the live event back in 2000.
Thirteen years ago, the fireworks drew in an audience of 8.847 million in the time slot. Overall, the two-hour Macy’s fireworks show pulled in 7.10 million viewers last night. As is typical of such live events, expect to see an adjustment in the final numbers later today. As well, it’s worth noting that on a night of encores, affiliates across the country on all of the networks cut into national programming to show local fireworks displays.
NBC aired an abbreviated encore of the Macy’s fireworks from 10 PM to 11 PM that garnered a 1.3/6 and 5.49 million viewers to be the second highest rated and No. 2 most watched programming of the night. A Big Bang Theory repeat on CBS at 8 PM was the third highest rated and No. 3 most watched show of the night on the Big 4 with a 1.2/6 and 5.41 million viewers. NBC won the holiday night among adults 18-49 and total viewers with 6.560 million tuning in. Univision was No. 2 among the key demo with CBS second in total viewers.
ABC, CBS and Fox played all encores last night.