Updated with Comedy Central stats: Trevor Noah’s unveiling as new host of The Daily Show logged 1.09 million viewers on Comedy Central last night, according to Nielsen stats. The debut was, however, simulcast across a dozen other networks of Viacom Media Networks: MTV, VH1, Spike, BET, Nick at Nite, MTV2, CMT, TV Land, Centric, Logo, MTVU and VH1 Classic. Adding up the 11-11:30 PM stats from these networks brings Noah’s tally up to about 3.4M viewers for his premiere telecast on television alone.
Comedy Central this afternoon put Noah’s launch at an average of 3.7M total viewers, including an encore on Comedy Central and an adjusted number from Nielsen for Centric. The network touted Noah’s 7.5M viewers – the number of people who had sampled one minute or more of his first night hosting.
The 3.4M average audience would put Noah on par with Jon Stewart’s August swan song, which was watched by 3.5 million, though on Comedy Central only. Stewart’s so-long was the second best overall viewership in the late-night franchise’s history. That night Stewart logged 1.8 million demo viewers in his premiere telecast – also on par with Noah’s mega-simulcast demo audience average of 1.8M.
Stewart’s best Daily Show crowd is the 3.6M who tuned in on October 28, 2008, when a young senator and White House hopeful named Barack Obama was his guest.
For comparison’s sake, Stephen Colbert’s recent debut as host of CBS’ The Late Show logged 6.6 million viewers. That was a big boost compared with the 2.5 million who’d tuned in when Colbert signed off at Comedy Central in order to take over for David Letterman, in December. That 2.5M was a series best. On October 17, 2005, the unveiling of The Colbert Report as Stewart’s lead-out had drawn 1.13M viewers.
Noah’s mega-simulcast launch strategy mirrors Viacom’s most recent telecast of its MTV Video Music Awards.