The season finale of "Dancing With the Stars" and performance finale brought good and bad news for their networks Tuesdsay night.
ABC's "DWTS" finale — featuring Green Bay Packers wide receiver Donald Driver being crowned the winner — was the most-watched show of the night in total viewers, with 17.5 million, and the season's highest-rated results show. But it was the show's lowest-rated finale on record in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic. "American Idol," meanwhile, was the highest-rated show of the night and led Fox to an overall ratings win — but it was the lowest-rated performance finale for the decade-old show.
The lows came in a season when many aging reality behemouths — from "Idol" to "The Bachelor" — have posted lower numbers.
Fox came in first in ratings with an average 3.6/10 share and second in total viewers with an average 11 million. "Idol" at 8 p.m. dropped 14 percent in the demo to a 4.2/13, and pulled 14.9 million total viewers. The "Glee" season finale the following hour jumped 20 percent to a 3.0/8 — a three-month high for the series — and took in 7.6 million total viewers.
ABC took second place in ratings and first in total viewers with an average 2.6/7 and 14.6 million. Following a "Dancing With the Stars" recap at 8, the season finale posted a 53 percent increase in the demo, hitting a season high of 3.2/9. But besides being the show's lowest-rated finale, it was down 30 percent from last May's finale.
NBC took third place in ratings and fourth in total viewers with an average 2.1/6 and 6.5 million. Following an "America's Got Talent" repeat at 8, a new episode the following hour drew a 3.2/9 and 9.3 million total viewers. the 20th anniversary special of "Dateline" at 10 posted a 1.6/4 and 5 million total viewers.
CBS, which ran repeats throughout the night, drew fourth place in ratings and third in total viewers with an average 1.5/4 and 8.6 million.