Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade Ratings Steady With 2018 As Al Roker Battles Butter Man

Confetti kicked off a parade that many thought would be grounded due to the weather, but viewership was down a tad AP

In the end, the weather didn’t ground the balloons at this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, but NBC’s Al Roker almost got shut down by a walking, talking stick of butter. Seriously.

The Today veteran was handling his hosting duties for the annual New York City shindig on Thursday morning when he was interrupted twice on the street by a dude adorned as butter. The first time, Roker tried to take control of the situation by charging the yellow costumed gentleman, giving him an on-air shove and declaring “I hate to butter you up, but you’ve got to move on.”

It wasn’t that successful an attempt.

Not only did America spread around the moment online, but the butter man in question returned to haunt Roker again later in the day. “Butter your turkey, butter your ham!” the unnamed stick proclaimed. Second time round, Roker went for comic timing rather than physical contact.

“And that’s why everybody loves clowns,” he said to the camera and viewing audience.

Speaking of that viewing audience, ratings for the 2019 march by the iconic retailer were basically about even with 2018. Broadcast from 9 AM-noon ET on the Comcast-owned network, the 93rd Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade averaged 22.1 million sets of eyeballs, according to Nielsen. Packing Central Park West with performances by the likes of the Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon and The Roots and Broadway shows plus the array of lower-flying-than-usual balloons such as SpongeBob SquarePants, newbies Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham and Astronaut Snoopy, yesterday’s parade dipped 7% in total audience from last year.

The third largest entertainment offering of the year so far after the Academy Awards on ABC and the post-Super Bowl preview of the James Corden-hosted World’s Best on CBS, the 2019 Macy’s parade beat the 20 million who tuned in for the Grammys for a second time in a row.

Look at the key demographic of adults 18-49, yesterday’s parade snagged a 5.5 rating. Similar to overall audience, that result is a slip of 8% from last year.

In another year of minor declines, don’t feel too bad for NBC right now as you get your Black Friday on. In what is one of the biggest small-screen days of the year, NBC again had the double threat of the primetime NFL game that captured many of us during our post-turkey food coma.

Hope you get some great deals.

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