Saturday Night Live returned from a brief hiatus last night with the second episode to air live on both coasts. Hosted by Chris Pine with musical guest LCD Soundsystem, the telecast averaged 6.919 million viewers overall and a 1.87 rating in adults 18-49 in official fast Live+Same Day numbers that include the live audiences on both coasts plus unduplicated viewers from 11:30 encores in western markets.
That was down from SNL‘s first truly live installment three weeks ago hosted by Jimmy Fallon (7.880 million viewers, 2.27 adults 18-49 rating) and was also behind the highly rated episodes hosted by Alec Baldwin and Dave Chappelle earlier this season, which aired live on the East Coast only.
Last night’s total audience still was the biggest for a May SNL edition since the May 19, 2012 season finale (with host and musical guest Mick Jagger, 6.954 million). In 18-49, it was the best since the May 17, 2014 season finale with host Andy Samberg (2.09) and out-rated every primetime telecast on the broadcast networks so far this week in adults 18-49 except The Big Bang Theory (2.48).
SNL‘s ratings are expected to spike next week when Melissa McCarthy, who has delivered the extremely popular Sean Spicer impersonation this season, is returning as host.
The average 10.952 million viewers in L+7 makes this SNL’s most-watched season at this point in 23 years (versus prior seasons’ original telecasts through comparable dates), best since 1993-94 (11.213 million for that season’s first 19 originals). The 3.51 average in L+7 adults 18-49 rating average is the show’s best performances in the demo at this point since 2008-09 (3.93 for that season’s first 20 originals).