UPDATE: In updated Live+3 estimates from Nielsen, the series finale of BET’s “The Game” surged to 2.3 million total viewers, including about 1.3 million adults 18-49 (1.02 rating). In total viewership, this was a nice 16% increase over the eighth-season finale of earlier this year.

In social media, the “Game” finale garnered a total of 36,000 Tweets and 2.3 million impressions by more than 13,000 users. It trended on Twitter for more than four hours on Wednesday.


Sitcom “The Game,” the rare scripted series to have aired original episodes on three different networks, ended its lengthy run Wednesday night on BET with season-high ratings.

Nielsen estimates that the hourlong finale of the comedy created by Mara Brock Akil averaged a 0.74 rating in adults 18-49 and 1.769 million viewers overall in the 10 o’clock hour — week-to-week gains of 7% in the demo and 23% in total viewers. It was cable’s No. 1 original program for the night in all key female demos and ranked No. 2 (behind MTV’s “Catfish”) among all originals in adults 18-34 (0.68).

“The Game” was a spinoff of the long-running comedy “Girlfriends,” which debuted on UPN in 2000 before moving over to CW in 2006. It aired for three seasons on CW but was canceled in the spring of 2009 after averaging 1.8 million viewers on Friday nights.

See more: Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil Ink Overall Deal with Warner Bros.

BET, which had been airing the comedy in syndication, revived “The Game” with new episodes in 2011. Its premiere on the network in January 2011 stunned the industry by drawing 7.68 million viewers — the largest basic cable audience ever for an original comedy on a non-kids network — and a 3.6 rating/10 share in adults 18-49 that beat all of the broadcast networks in its time period.

“The Game” fell off this year, but its “live plus-3” average audience prior to Wednesday’s finale (1.85 million) was the largest for any original basic cable comedy this summer (excluding kids networks).

Elsewhere in same-day Wednesday cable ratings, ABC Family’s “Melissa and Joey” ended the second half of its fourth season with summer highs, including a 0.41 rating in adults 18-49, a 0.49 rating in adults 18-34 and 935,000 viewers overall. Lead-out “Baby Daddy” ended its season with a 0.36 rating in 18-49, a 0.42 in 18-34 and 909,000 total viewers.

At USA, “Mr. Robot” was up week to week in both 18-49 (0.47 vs. 0.42) and adults 25-54 (0.53 vs. 0.48) while drawing about 1.15 million total viewers overall. Both it and lead-in “Suits” (0.59 in 18-49, 0.71 in 25-54, 2.08 million viewers overall) have been among the most steady scripted cable performers this summer.

A&E’s “Duck Dynasty” (0.75 rating in 18-49, 2.07 million viewers overall) edged out “The Game” as cable’s No. 1 original for the night in 18-49, and lead-out “Wahlburgers” (0.70 in 18-49, 1.53 million viewers overall) hit summer highs and held an impressive 93% of the young-adult “Duck” audience.

Outside of primetime, the penultimate episode of “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” matched its best 18-49 rating (0.61) since February and drew the show’s largest overall audience (1.821 million) since last December.

(Live plus same-day)

Adults 18-49 rating
1.  Duck Dynasty (A&E), 0.75
2.  The Game (BET), 0.74
3.  Wahlburgers (A&E), 0.70
4.  American Pickers (History), 0.65
5.  Suits (USA), 0.59
6.  Catfish (MTV), 0.53
7.  Donnie Loves Jenny (A&E), 0.49
8.  Key & Peele (Comedy), 0.47
8.  Mr. Robot (USA), 0.47
10.  Little Women L.A. (Lifetime), 0.42

Total Viewers (in millions)
1.  American Pickers (History), 2.907
2.  The O’Reilly Factor (FNC), 2.844
3.  The Kelly File (FNC), 2.450
4.  Suits *USA), 2.083
5.  Duck Dynasty (A&E), 2.072
6.  House Hunters (HGTV), 1.961
7.  Hannity (FNC), 1.914
8.  The Game (BET), 1.769
9.  Property Bros. Buy and Sell (HGTV), 1.720
10.  House Hunters Intl. (HGTV), 1.698

Source: Nielsen
(Each 18-49 ratings point represents roughly 1.27 million viewers)