Ronan Farrow‘s debut as host of Ronan Farrow Daily on MSNBC scored 216,000 viewers Monday — the cable network’s smallest audience of the day, tied with 10 AM’s Jansing & Co. Farrow — who was recruited, in part, to attract the next generation of news viewers to the network — averaged just 21,000 viewers in the younger 18-49 demo. Among 25- to 54-year-olds, he logged an average of 46,000 viewers. His biggest audience by far was among viewers ages 50 and older — 195,000 of them. That older skew is typical of news programming but might be somewhat surprising given how assiduously he catered to younger viewers during his maiden broadcast.
Farrow recruited fewer viewers — and fewer young ones — than did Andrea Mitchell Reports in its new timeslot. Mitchell’s show logged 223,000 overall viewers, including 48,000 viewers in the 18-49 demo, and 71,000 in the news demo — 25-54. Mitchell’s show, ironically, did not do as well with the 50+ crowd as did Farrow, scoring an average of 174,000 of them. The only program that scored a smaller crowd of 18- to 49-year-olds on MSNBC that day was the show that followed Farrow’s, The Reid Report — the other new program making its debut that day, hosted by Joy Reid. It clocked 262,000 overall viewers, just 14,000 in that younger demo, 38,000 in the news demo, and 245,000 viewers ages 50+.
“I grew up watching the greats of TV news … Murrow, Cronkite, Colbert,” the 26-year-old Farrow said at the top of his first Ronan Farrow Daily, one of two new afternoon shows MSNBC launched Monday. (Murrow died in 1965; Cronkite retired as CBS evening newscaster in ’81)
Mitchell had not anchored her show on Monday; Tuesday, however, she was back, noting at the end of her show as she threw to Farrow, “Hi, Ronan — great to see you!”
He replied: “Hi Andrea. It is one of the big perks of this job that I get to follow you and, honestly, if I’m able to capture a fraction of the integrity you keep in your reporting, I am A-OK on my show. So thank you for that intro.”
“Thank you! This is going to be fun,” Mitchell responded.
Farrow’s launch followed a boatload of free publicity when Farrow’s mother, Mia Farrow said in a Vanity Fair piece that Ronan’s dad might be Frank Sinatra and when Ronan tweeted during the Golden Globes, in reference to his mother’s former lover, “Missed the Woody Allen tribute – did they put the part where a woman publicly confirmed he molested her at age 7 before or after Annie Hall?” Ronan continued to make headlines after his sister, Dylan Farrow, wrote a letter that appeared in NYT columnist Nick Kristof’s blog, in which she detailed her alleged assault by Allen, and NYT book critic Janet Maslin claimed Dylan wrote the letter and got it published because she was jealous that Ronan was getting more publicity from that Vanity Fair revelation about Sinatra. (Woody Allen, meanwhile, responded through his spokesperson that he read Dylan’s letter and “found it untrue and disgraceful,” noting that a thorough investigation was conducted at the time by court-appointed independent experts who concluded there was no credible evidence of Dylan’s claims, and that no charges were ever filed.)
Watch the first minutes of Ronan Farrow’s Monday MSNBC debut here: