You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Late-Night Ratings: Jimmy Kimmel Overtakes Stephen Colbert for First Time

After weeks of lagging CBS’ shiny new “Late Show with Stephen Colbert” in the late-night ratings race, ABC veteran “Jimmy Kimmel Live” is starting to make some noise — edging ahead of original episodes of the Eye program for the first time.

In Nielsen’s “live plus same-day” estimates for the week of Nov. 2-6, which saw NBC’s “Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” remain a dominant No. 1, “Kimmel” bested “Late Show” by 5% in both adults 18-49 rating (0.60 vs. 0.57) and total viewers (2.626 million vs. 2.492 million). The ABC program got a boost on Thursday when a visit by Hillary Clinton produced its most-watched telecast on any night in six months (3.116 million). It also won by 22% in 18-49 over “Late Show” that night (0.73 vs. 0.60).

Jimmy Kimmel Live” was the only 11:35 p.m. talkshow up week to week, rising 6% in 18-49 and 10% in total viewers; the show’s Tuesday averages were excluded due to Election Night coverage. “Tonight,” which averaged a 0.91 in 18-49 and 3.372 million total viewers, and “Late Show” were both down 6% in the demo.

For the first six weeks of Colbert’s stint as host of “The Late Show,” the newcomer beat “Kimmel” on average by about 40% in both adults 18-49 rating (0.73 to 0.52) and total viewers (3.19 million vs. 2.24 million), according to Nielsen. But a weeklong stint hosting from Brooklyn helped “Kimmel” move ahead of “Late Show” repeats during the week of Oct. 19-23. And the ABC program then shaved “Late Show’s” demo advantage to just 7% when all shows were back in originals th week of Oct. 26-30.

News of the breakthrough victory for Kimmel came one day after CBS announced that it would be airing a live episode of “Late Show” following the network’s Super Bowl coverage on Feb. 7.

For NBC, “Tonight Show” last week expanded its lead over “Late Show” to a largest-yet 60% in 18-49 rating (0.91 vs. 0.57). And behind it, “Late Night with Seth Meyers” pulled to within 0.05 of Colbert and 0.08 of Kimmel in 18-49 despite starting an hour later.

Head-to-head, “Late Night” dominated CBS’ “Late Late Show with James Corden,” winning by 73% in adults 18-49 rating (0.52 vs. 0.30) and by 26% in total viewers (1.636 million vs. 1.294 million).

More TV

  • Adam Lambert, of Queen, performs at

    Adam Lambert Back to 'Idol' to Mentor Finalists Through Queen's Catalog

    Adam Lambert famously launched his career on “American Idol” a decade ago performing a brilliant audition of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.” He wrapped that amazing eighth season performing with the band on the season finale, and years later earned his current spot as the front man touring as Queen + Adam Lambert. On April 28, Lambert comes full circle as he steps [...]

  • Lily Tomlin SAG Lifetime Acheivement Award

    TV News Roundup: Netflix's 'Laugh-In' 50th Anniversary Tribute Sets Premiere Date

    In today’s TV News roundup, Netflix sets the premiere date for its 50th anniversary special of “Laugh-In.” DATES “Laugh-In: The Stars Celebrate,” the 50th anniversary tribute to the original series by Dan Rowan and Dick Martin, will premiere on Netflix on May 14. The special, which was taped at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, pays [...]

  • Texas Tech's Norense Odiase (32) shoots

    Live+3 Ratings for Week of April 8: NCAA Championship Game Dunks on Competition

    The final of the 2019 NCAA basketball tournament, in which Virginia triumphed over a spirited Texas Tech team, unsurprisingly finished way out in front in the Live+3 ratings for the week of April 8. Although the sports broadcast’s scripted competition made some gains, its 5.4 ratings still more than doubled that of “Grey’s Anatomy” in [...]

  • Mueller Report Release Draws 11 Million

    Mueller Report Release Draws 11 Million Total Viewers Across TV News

    Coverage of the release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report into whether President Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice unsurprisingly caused a ratings bump across TV news yesterday. In terms of overall viewership, around 11 million people tuned in to see Attorney General William Barr’s news conference regarding the report’s release, and the news coverage surrounding it. According [...]

  • Neilsons Measurment Problems TV Digital

    WarnerMedia Pulls Out of Audience-Targeting Alliance Open A.P.

    WarnerMedia is going its own way when it comes to helping advertisers find specific groups of TV-watchers. The company, a founding member of the audience-targeting media alliance known as Open A.P., said Friday it would withdraw from the group, citing its desire to pursue its own strategy under owner AT&T. AT&T purchased Time Warner in [...]

  • BLESS THIS MESS - "The Chicken

    Listen: Lake Bell, Dax Shepard on Returning to Broadcast TV With 'Bless This Mess'

    Welcome to “TV Take,” Variety’s television podcast. In this week’s installment, Variety’s executive editor of TV, Daniel Holloway, chats with Lake Bell and Dax Shepard, stars of ABC’s “Bless This Mess,” which debuted on Monday. The show centers around a newly married couple, played by Bell and Shepard, who decide to ditch their shoebox New York City [...]

  • superstore renewed season 3

    'Superstore' Showrunner Justin Spitzer Steps Down as He, Gabe Miller, Jonathan Green Renew Overall Deals at UTV

    “Superstore” executive producers Justin Spitzer, Gabe Miller and Jonathan Green have all renewed their overall deals with Universal Television. In addition, Miller and Green will take over showrunner duties on “Superstore” while Spitzer — who also created the series — will shift to develop new projects for the studio beginning with the 2019-2020 season. “I [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content