'Conan' Premiere Draws 2.8 Rating
O'Brien's TBS debut beats broadcast competition
By Jon Lafayette -- Broadcasting & Cable, 11/9/2010 8:32:54 AM
Conan's 2.8 beat its late night talk show competition. In metered markets, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno drew a 2.7 household rating, CBS' Late Show with David Letterman had a 2.5, ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live scored a 1.7, Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS had a 1.4 and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on NBC earned a 1.4.
Turner Broadcasting expected the first show to draw a big number, but expects the number to be about 1 million viewers when the excitement settles down.
O'Brien's first show featured several jokes about the unfortunate end to his late-night career on NBC, and guests Seth Rogan, Lea Michele and Jack White.
In a blog post last night, TV researcher Steven Sternberg said "TBS's relentless (and quite good) promotional efforts should result in decent viewer sampling, but then it will be up to him to maintain that audience. If he tries to appeal to a younger audience, there are more than 20 cable networks in primetime with average median ages under 40. He might be able to accumulate enough viewers from them to survive, and maybe even thrive."
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