Back on a Sunday after last year’s move to Monday by NBC, and up against Sunday Night Football, there was some history and some surprises last night on the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards. The history saw barrier-breaking wins by Viola Davis and by HBO’s Game Of Thrones – even as the Emmys took a big hit in the ratings. Surprise number one on the almost 3-hour show had to be the appearance of Tracy Morgan to hand out the Best Drama series award. Before uttering a word, the phoenix-like comedian brought the Microsoft Theater to its feet. Once he spoke there was barely a dry eye in the joint. Surprise number two for the Fox broadcast ceremony had to be how the Andy Samberg-hosted show was nimble on its feet and finished 2-minutes under time at 7:58 PM ET – but being under time didn’t seem to garner the Emmys any points in the early ratings.
On a competitive night that saw the Green Bay Packers beat the Seattle Seahawks 27 – 17 in Week 2 of NBC and the NFL’s Sunday Night Football, the 2015 Emmy Awards scored a 8.7/14 in metered markets. With no red carpet coverage but an all-wrapped-up NFL lead-in instead, last night’s Fox ceremony was down a hard 20% from the 10.9/18 that last year’s Emmys pulled in on NBC on August 25. Perhaps more importantly and telling is that the 2015 Emmy Awards fell 28% from the 12.1/19 metered market results of the 2013 Emmy Awards – which were also on a traditional Sunday.
The September 22, 2013 ceremony had a few minutes of NFL overruns on CBS and faced SNF. Last night’s Dallas Cowboys 20- 10 easy win Philadelphia Eagles game was over on Fox with more than 15 minutes to spare before the Emmys started – though post-game coverage kept going from the red carpet in L.A. until the ceremony started. For the record, last night’s Emmys were also down 9% in MM results from the 9.6/15 of the 2012 ceremony on ABC and 7% form the 2011 show on Fox.
Last night’s SNF game snagged a 16.3/27 in metered markets, which is basically steady with last week’s opener. That September 14 Dallas Cowboys’ win over the NY Giants got a 16.7/28, meaning last night saw a dip of 2% in MM results. The Packers win over the Seahawks was also up 16% from the 14.0/23 MM result that Week 2 Chicago Bears 28-20 victory over the San Francisco 49ers drew on September 14 last year.
We’ll update with more Emmy and SNF ratings later, but here are some numbers to ponder. Last year’s Emmys, which were on a Monday on NBC, got a 4.2/14 rating and 15.6 million viewers in the final numbers. The 2013 Emmys, which were on a Sunday on CBS, pulled in a 4.9/13 rating among adults 18-49 and 17.8 million viewers in its final numbers.
And for you NFL fans, two things – first the 16 overnight rating for last night’s SNF is the third 16 rating in a row that NBC has had consecutively this season. The Thursday kickoff had a 16 as did last Sunday’s Cowboys vs Giants game. That’s the first time in the 10 seasons that NBC has had SNF that it has scored such a goal. Looking specifically at last night’s game, the Top 5 local markets for Packers win over the Seahawks were Milwaukee (52.5/73), then Seattle (50.6/75), Portland (25.8/46), Las Vegas (24.9/49) and Denver (22.9/40).
2nd UPDATE, 9:59 AM: The final numbers are in for last night’s 67th Primetime Emmy Awards and …well, they got tackled to what looks like an all-time low. With a 3.6 rating among adults 18-49 and total viewership of 11.9 million, Sunday’s 2015 Emmys were down 14% and 24% respectively from 2014. Now, it has to be noted that last year, the Emmys didn’t face Sunday Night Football on NBC because broadcaster NBC moved the show to August 25, a Monday.
The 2013 Emmys did face off against SNF but that CBS telecast ended up getting a 4.9/13 rating and viewership of 17.8 million. The 2012 Emmys on ABC had 13.2 million viewers and a 3.8 rating – which was down 10% in the demo from the 2011 show on Fox. Looking at the total viewership, last night’s Emmys may be the worst the show has ever done. While audience numbers from the Seventies are not available, the 2015 Emmys fell below the known low of 12.3 million that the show had on ABC in 1990 and on Fox in 2008.
UPDATE, 9:08 AM: The second round of the Emmy Awards ratings are in and, like the metered market numbers from earlier, the ceremony is down double-digits from last year and 2013. In fast nationals, Fox’s broadcast drew a 3.2/9 among adults 18-49 with 10.37 million total viewers in the 8 – 11 PM slot. Fast nationals to fast nationals, last night’s Emmys is down 16% from the 2014 show, which was shown on NBC on a Monday and didn’t face Sunday Night Football on August 25 last year. The 2015 Emmys are also down 26% compared to the unadjusted fast nationals of the 2013 ceremony, which ran on CBS on a Sunday and facing off against the NFL on NBC.
The 2014 Emmys ended up getting a 4.2/14 rating and 15.6 million viewers in the final number. The 2013 Emmys had a 4.9/13 rating among the key demo and 17.8 million viewers when all was tallied up.
The big winners on Sunday night this year was the Green Bay Packers and NBC. The midwestern team beat the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday Night Football (8.5/25) and the net saw just an 8% dip from last week’s official season opener. Last night’s SNF was up 12% in the demo from the second week of last season on September 14, 2014. In the early numbers, last night’s SNF scored nearly 23 million total viewers – that’s up from the 19.43 million who watched the second week of SNF in 2014 and down 14% from the near record 26.8 million who watched last Sunday’s primetime game on NBC. The Comcast-owned network won the night with a 7.1/22 rating and 19.58 million viewers. Fox was second with 4.1/13 and 12.58 million, in no small part to that NFL game running into the 7 -8 PM slot.
On a night of half hour primetime delays because of NFL pre-emptions across the country, CBS’ only original of the night was Big Brother (1.8/5). Though unreliable, the numbers right now have the vet reality show down 22% in the demo from last week. ABC was all encores on Sunday.