New Caitlyn Jenner Interview Brings ’20/20′ Ratings Down, ‘Dateline’ Rises


While there is still time, someone might want to give Tucker Carlson’s booking team a call. Based on how 20/20 (0.8/3) stumbled last night with a sit-down & catch-up interview with Caitlyn Jenner, the Fox New Channel host may find his April 24 debut in Bill O’Reilly’s old time slot proving less than golden with the former Olympian as a guest.

Two years after Diane Sawyer’s ratings multi-year record breaking chat with the transitioning 1976 decathlete and reality TV participant, last night’s chat with Caitlyn saw 20/20 down double-digits. Not entirely surprising, Friday’s 1-hour 20/20 was down 85% among adults 18-49 from the 2-hour April 24, 2015 interview, that was Jenner’s first real revelation to the world of who she was becoming. However, with all the hype power behind last night’s show and plugging Jenner’s new The Secrets of My Life book, the ABC News mag took an 11% demo decline from its April 14 show – which received barely any such promotion.

Now last night’s 20/20 was coming out of a Shark Tank (1.0/4) that was down a tenth form last week, even though it was tied for the highest rated show of Friday’s primetime. The small consolation that the Disney-owned net can take is that 20/20’s total viewership was up 11% from last week for its best numbers since February 24.

Overall, with CBS’s Blue Bloods (0.6/3) and more in repeats, the night belonged to NBC with a 0.9/4 demo win over ABC’s 0.8/3. Still, with the encore of the Tom Selleck-led NYPD family drama proving the most watched show of the night with 6.49 million tuning in, the House of Moonves won the total audience category with 5.85 million sets of eyeballs.

The Comcast-owned net’s night started off with an even First Dates (0.7/3) and then saw a two-hour Dateline NBC (1.0/4) jump up 25% in the 18-49 demo – to match Shark Tank as the night’s highest rated show.  In the 25-54 news demo, Dateline got a 1.4, a 17% increase over last week.

Facing First Dates at 8 PM, ABC’s The Toy Box (0.6/3) was down tenth from last week on an overall declining night for the net. In the same slot and airing its penultimate episode of the season, FOX’s Rosewood (0.6/3) was another rare riser for Friday with a 20% increase over its April 14 show.

Like CBS, the CW was all encores last night.

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