The 2015 “American Music Awards” gave ABC its strongest Sunday of the television season even if it came in a little below last year’s event in key ratings categories. NBC dominated the night overall as usual with “Sunday Night Football,” but its Cincinnati-Arizona matchup produced season-low results.
The “AMAs,” hosted by Jennifer Lopez from Los Angeles, averaged a 3.5 rating/10 share in adults 18-49 and 11 million viewers overall from 8 to 11 p.m., placing second to football in the demo for its time period. The kudocast was down 8% (0.3) in the demo and off by about 600,000 total viewers from last year and gave ABC its top-rated Sunday night since the night of the Billboard Music Awards in May (3.8 in 18-49, 11.2 million total viewers). The “AMAs” led its time period in key female demos as well as teens 12-17 (3.5/15).
Kicking off the night, “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (1.1/3 in 18-49, 5.7 million viewers overall) matched its season high in the demos while drawing its largest overall audience of the season. “Videos” and the awards show helped ABC more than double its nightly average from last Sunday (1.4).
At NBC, “Sunday Night Football” averaged an 11.7 overnight household rating/19 share in Nielsen’s metered markets, down 7% from last week’s 12.7 overnight rating, which had been a season low. Last night’s game was a high-scoring, down-to-the-wire matchup between two of the league’s best teams, though neither the Bengals nor Cardinals is much of a national draw. The Cardinals’ 34-31 victory averaged a 39.4/57 in Cincinnati (the highest ever for a regular-season Bengals game on “SNF”) and a 31.7/45 in Phoenix.
Last night’s game averaged a 5.6/16 in 18-49 and 16.7 million viewers overall on NBC’s stations from 8:30 to 11 p.m., and these numbers are expected to rise by 10% or more in the nationals.
Elsewhere, Fox had the football doubleheader lead-in, which lifted the ratings for “The Simpsons” (2.3/7 in 18-49, 5.6 million viewers overall), “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (1.7/5 in 18-49, 3.9 million viewers overall), “Family Guy” (1.6/4 in 18-49, 3.3 million viewers overall) and “The Last Man on Earth” (1.3/3 in 18-49, 3.3 million viewers overall). The comedy block, though, was below its average on previous nights this fall with a football lead-in.
CBS opened with good numbers (1.5/5 in 18-49, 10.9 million viewers overall) for a “60 Minutes” that did not have a national football lead-in. It was followed by a below-average “Madam Secretary” (1.1/3 in 18-49, 9.9 million viewers overall) and “The Good Wife” (0.9/2 in 18-49, 7.8 million viewers overall) and a decent “CSI: Cyber” (0.9/3 in 18-49, 6.3 million viewers overall).
Ratings for Sunday’s cable action won’t be available until Tuesday, but AMC’s “The Walking Dead” dominated as usual in the overnights with a 7.0 household rating — on par with last week, which translated into a . Behind it, “Into the Badlands” (2.6) was down about 25% from last week’s strong premiere (3.5).