NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” opened its 40th season to soft ratings on Saturday night, according to early numbers.
The episode, with host Chris Pratt and musical guest Ariana Grande, averaged a 4.0/10 in household results in Nielsen’s 56 metered markets and a 2.1/10 in adults 18-49 in the 25 markets with local people meters. That was lower than last year’s season premiere with host Tina Fey and musical guest Arcade Fire on Sept. 28, 2013, which earned a 4.7/12 and a 2.7/13.
The 40th season premiere was the highest-rated telecast of the night in both metered markets and the local 18-49 ratings.
For further context, it did match last year’s season finale with host Andy Samberg and musical guest St. Vincent which earned a 4.0/10, 2.1/10. It was the the show’s highest metered-market household rating since March 8 with host Lena Dunham and musical guest The National which earned a 4.1/11. And as for the advertiser-coveted 18-49, it closely matched the episode hosted by Anna Kendrick and musical guest Pharrell on April 5 which garnered a 2.2/10.
Sarah Silverman will host “SNL” next Saturday, Oct. 4 with musical guest Maroon 5. And “SNL” alum Bill Hader will return to the show as host on Oct. 11 with musical guest Hozier.