The final ratings for Season 46 of Saturday Night Live are in, and the venerable late-night sketch program ranked as the No. 1 entertainment show among all ad-supported networks in the adults 18-49 demo. The show averaged a 2.06 rating in 18-49 and 9 million total viewers overall in Live+7 numbers.
For the second year in a row, SNL also finished as the No. 1 comedy on ad-supported television in the demo. It ranked as No.2 in total viewers after leading the pack for most of the season.
The top finishes come despite SNL ending the season by hitting lows in its last episodes. The strong season averages stem largely from a red-hot fall run leading to and immediately following the November Presidential election. It marked the first time SNL aired originals for six weeks in a row – Oct. 3 through Nov. 7. The run was bookmarked by the Oct. 3 season premiere, hosted by Chris Rock, and the post-election Nov. 7 telecast, hosted by Dave Chappelle, which rank as SNL‘s two highest-rated episodes of the season in 18-49.
The show got a late ratings boost with the May 8 edition, hosted by Elon Musk, which became the program’s third highest-rated episode of the season in the demo behind the Chappelle (No. 1) and Rock (No. 2) installments.
“SNL is one of the most culturally significant shows in television history, and being No. 1 in its 46th season is a testament to how that relevance has continued to grow over the past five decades,” said Susan Rovner, Chairman, Entertainment Content, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. “One of the greatest gifts of this role is being able to watch the ‘SNL’ team do what they do each week, all while keeping the show as strong and vibrant as ever.”
SNL generated the No. 1 most YouTube video views (1.6 billion) of any late-night show in all of TV. It also gained the No. 1 most new fans/followers/subscribers (2.7 million) across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube of any late-night show in all of TV.
“Congratulations to Lorne Michaels and the entire cast and crew for this milestone. What makes it even more remarkable is that it was accomplished during a pandemic, amid quarantines and strict protocols. It required an outstanding blend of brilliant, creative entertainment and technological talent,” said Katie Hockmeyer, EVP, Late Night Programming, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming.