The shows that ushered in the current wave of competition reality series on broadcast TV, CBS’ Survivor and Fox’s American Idol, went head-to-head with their finales for the first time last night, resulting in a possible photo finish as both series went into overtime. Idol, which aired from 8-10:06 PM, drew a 2.6 in adults 18-49 and 10.1 million viewers from 8-10 PM, up 24% from last Wednesday in total viewers and up 15% in total viewers. But from last year’s finale, it was down 28% to mark the reality veteran’s lowest-rated closer. Survivor: Cagayan, which aired from 8-10:13 PM, averaged a 2.5 from 8-10 PM. That was down a tenth from last week’s hourlong episode and down two tenths from last spring’s finale, which aired in Survivor closers’ traditional home on Sunday. Both Idol and Survivor will get upward adjustments in the finals, with Idol likely to edge its longtime rival when the dust settles. Fox is expected to win the night in 18-49 and total viewers.
The Disney World-set hourlong season finale of ABC’s The Middle (2.0) was up a tenth from last week and even with last season’s closer despite facing more competition this year. The heavily promoted season finale of Modern Family featuring Cam and Mitchell’s wedding drew a 3.6 in adults 18-49 and 10.2 million viewers, up 13% and 12%, respectively, from last week to post/tie its best numbers in the two categories since last November and December. Vs. last year’s finale (3.7, 10.0 million), Modern Family was was on par, down a fraction in 18-49 and up a fraction in total viewers for the series’ second largest season finale audience. It was the top program of the night. At 9:30 PM, the finale of cancelled midseason comedy Mixology (1.3) was flat with last week. At 10 PM, Canadian import Motive opened its second season on ABC with a 0.9 in 18-49, down 31% from its premiere last May, up a tenth from the finale.
NBC’s recently cancelled Revolution made a quiet exit, drawing a 1.1 for its series finale, down 8% from last week to tie a series low. There was a small uptick, 8%, in total viewers, to 4.2 million. Vs. its first season finale in the Monday 10 PM slot, Revolution was down 45%. Law & Order: SVU (1.6) was flat with last week, down a tenth from last season’s closer, while Chicago PD (1.6) closed out its freshman season up a tenth from last week.
Following The 100 repeat, an original episode of the renewed freshman drama pulled in a 0.5, down a tenth from last week to tie a series low.