Here’s a deeper look at the last night before NBC begins Godzilla-ing through the Nielsen charts for 17 solid days, courtesy of mostly live primetime coverage of the Games of the XXXI Olympiad:
NBC’s Rio Olympics preview special at 8 p.m. drew a 1.1 rating in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic and 5.02 million total viewers, losing out to the aforementioned “Big Bang Theory” repeat (1.3 demo, 6.79 million total) but topping a “Life in Pieces” repeat in the demo by a 10th of a ratings point. Lest anyone think that augers poorly for tonight’s Opening Ceremonies, it’s worth a reminder that NBC’s telecast of the 2012 Opening Ceremony in London pulled in 40.7 million viewers.
CBS’ “Big Brother” at 9 p.m. won the demo competition handily with a 1.9 and brought in 5.86 million total viewers. ABC trotted out a new installment of BattleBots (0.8, 3.27 million total) and a two-hour finale for singing showcase “Greatest Hits” (0.9, 3.5 million total) — “Greatest Hits” improving its demo performance last week by a good 50%. Fox’s two-hour finale of the Mike Holmes-Tim Tebow reality competition series “Home Free” pulled in a 0.6 demo rating and 2.01 million viewers. The CW was in repeats (“DC’s Legends of Tomorrow,” followed by “Beauty and the Beast”).