Conan O’Brien’s ratings momentum shows no sign of slowing, with the Coco Express picking up steam as it prepares to speed off to destinations unknown.
For the first time in quite some time, "The Tonight Show" beat "Late Show with David Letterman" in the overall household ratings, according to Nielsen’s metered market averages. Conan averaged a 3.2 in overall homes, while Dave earned a 3.0/6.
And in the adult 18-49 demographic — the one most important to networks such as NBC — O’Brien has maintained his big lead over Letterman this week (usually, the two shows are tied.)
Friday’s "Tonight" averaged a 1.85 demo number, more than doubling the 0.85 average for "Late Show."
This, despite the fact that CBS provided a far stronger lead-in to "Late Show" (as usual). "Numbers" brought in 9.5 million viewers at 10 on CBS and notched a 2.2/7 in the demo, while "The Jay Leno Show" was seen by just 5.4 million folks and earned a 1.4 in the demo.
We believe Dick Ebersol would call this "an astounding failure."
Meanwhile, Gavin Polone isn’t the only one dismissing the idiotic New York Post Page Six report about Conan’s staffers somehow being upset with O’Brien for deciding not to stay with NBC after the network went back on its commitment to his hosting "The Tonight Show" at 11:35.
Even some inside NBC — which might benefit from any bad PR O’Brien might get — are bewildered about the Post’s story.
"It’s a complete lie," one Peacock staffer said, adding that Team Coco appears solidly behind its leader.
Indeed, as TV MoJoe first reported early Friday morning, O’Brien’s camp has been making a big deal out of making sure severance packages were as generous as possible. What’s more, it’s expected many (if not most) of the current staffers would end up coming with O’Brien to any new gig he started.