Clint Eastwood's empty-chair speech fails to make the networks' day
Coverage of the final night of the GOP convention yielded ratings blows across the board for the networks airing it Thursday night, with CBS taking a win for the night based largely on a steady "Big Brother," according to preliminary numbers.
Thursday night's ratings for all networks are likely to change due to the nature of tracking live events and preemptions from pre-season football. But as things currently stand, CBS holds first place in both the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic with a 1.8 rating/5 share and in total viewers with 5.7 million.
Following repeats of "The Big Bang Theory" and "Two and a Half Men," "Big Brother" at 9 p.m. drew even with last week's episode for a 2.3/6 and had 6.5 million total viewers. The network's coverage of the Republican convention the following hour posted a 1.0/3 — down 29 percent from the equivalent night of the 2008 convention — and 3.5 million total viewers.
ABC took second place in ratings and total viewers with a 1.4/4 and 5.3 million. Aside from its convention coverage, the network's slate saw considerable boosts, starting with "Wipeout" at 8, which climbed 23 percent for a 1.6/5 and attracted 5.8 million total viewers. "Rookie Blue" the following hour jumped 50 percent in the demo, receiving a 1.5/4 and drew 5.7 million total viewers. ABC's convention coverage at 10 posted a 1.0/3, a 38 percent drop from the equivalent night of the 2008 convention, and had 4.2 million total viewers.
Univision drew third place in ratings with a 1.2/4 and fifth in total viewers with 2.9 million.
Fox, which ran repeats throughout the night, took fourth place in ratings and fourth in total viewers with a 1.1/3 and 3.5 million.
NBC drew fifth place in ratings and third in total viewers with a 1.0/3 and 3.6 million. Following repeats of "The Office" and "Parks and Recreation," "Saving Hope" at 9 spiked 83 percent for a 1.1/3 and drew 4.1 million total viewers. NBC's coverage of the Republican convention, meanwhile, plunged 76 percent from the equivalent night last year for a 0.8/2, and drew 3.3 million total viewers.