TV Ratings: Final Debate Rules, ABC’s Halloween Scares Up a Win

The final debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump dominated the airwaves Wednesday night.

ABC was tops in total viewers within the 9-10:30 p.m. block, with an average audience of 9.84 million and a 2.8 18-49 rating. NBC averaged 9.18 million viewers and a 2.8 in the demo as well. CBS drew 9.29 million and a 2.2 demo rating. Fox came in with 6.3 million total viewers and a 2.0 demo.

The debate lasted until 10:36 p.m., at which point everyone but Fox went into post-brawl coverage. From 10:30-11, ABC averaged 7.7 million viewers and a 2.2 in the demo, NBC averaged 7.37 million viewers and a 2.2 in the demo, and CBS averaged 7.09 million viewers and a 1.7 demo rating.

But the debate wasn’t the only thing that aired last night on broadcast. ABC’s block of family Halloween programming at 8 p.m. easily bested everything else in the hour in the demo, including CBS stalwart “Survivor” (1.9 demo rating, 8.63 million viewers). Old classic “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” drew a 2.2 in the demo and 7.66 million viewers, and new classic “Toy Story of Terror” came in with a 2.0 demo and 6.7 million viewers.

On NBC, “Blindspot” added a couple tenths to its demo rating from last week, drawing a 1.3 in the demo and 5.62 million viewers.

Without its “Empire” lead-out, “Lethal Weapon” on Fox dropped a couple tenths from last week to a 1.7 demo rating and 6.6 million viewers.

Over on The CW, which, as usual, didn’t air debate coverage, “Arrow” ticked down again to a 0.6 demo rating (compared to a 0.7 last week) and 1.8 million total viewers. “Frequency” grew slightly, to a 0.4 in the demo and 1.05 million viewers.

As a reminder, most of these shows will see viewership gains of at least 50% once viewing within three and seven days is counted. But if the first two weeks of C3, or commercial, ratings are any indication, most of those gains won’t translate into the deliveries networks promise advertisers.

More TV

  • Tony Romo

    CBS Sports Re-Signs Tony Romo in Deal Valued Around $17 Million Per Year

    CBS Sports signed prize football analyst Tony Romo to a new deal, a major step in parent company ViacomCBS’ efforts to strike a new rights pact with the National Football League as its current contract heads toward the end of its term. CBS Sports said the company had signed Romo, the former Dallas Cowboys quarterback [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Writers Guild Says It Helped Negotiate 100 Deals for Agent-Less Members

    The Writers Guild of America has asserted that it has assisted in negotiating more than 100 deals in recent months for members without agents. The missive from the WGA West board of directors comes nearly a year after the guild leaders ordered their 15,000 members to fire their agents if the agents had not agreed [...]

  • Hilary Duff

    Hilary Duff Asks Disney to Move 'Lizzie McGuire' Revival to Hulu

    Hilary Duff has posted a statement asking that the planned revival of “Lizzie McGuire” be moved from Disney Plus to Hulu. “I’d be doing a disservice to everyone by limiting the realities of a 30 year old’s journey to live under the ceiling of a PG rating,” Duff wrote on Instagram. “It’s important to me [...]

  • Tan France Jameela Jamil

    TV News Roundup: Tan France, Jameela Jamil Among OZY Fest Headliners

    In today’s TV news roundup, OZY Media announced Tan France, Jameela Jamil and others as headliners of OZY Fest, and Netflix dropped the official trailer of “On My Block” Season 3. DATES Disney Channel‘s second season of “Just Roll With It” will premiere on Sunday, March 15 at 8:45 p.m. The sitcom follows the Bennett-Blatt family [...]

  • Lorraine Toussaint

    Queen Latifah's 'Equalizer' Reboot Pilot at CBS Casts Lorraine Toussaint

    Lorraine Toussaint has joined the CBS’ reboot pilot for “The Equalizer,” Variety has learned. She joins previously announced series lead Queen Latifah and recently announced cast member Liza Lapira. In the reimagined version, Queen Latifah stars as Robyn McCall, an enigmatic figure who uses her extensive skills to help those with nowhere else to turn. Toussaint [...]

  • Ben Schnetzer

    'Y: The Last Man' Series at FX Casts Ben Schnetzer as Yorick

    Ben Schnetzer has stepped into the role of Yorick Brown in FX’s upcoming “Y: The Last Man” series, Variety has learned. He takes over the role from Barry Keoghan, who exited the series at the beginning of this month. The show is based on Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s award-winning DC Comics graphic novel series [...]

  • Herb Dorfman Obit Dead

    Herb Dorfman, Orion Pictures Home Video Executive, Dies at 77

    Herb Dorfman, former Orion Pictures executive and a home video industry veteran, died Feb. 25 of complications from Parkinson’s disease and dementia. He was 77. Dorfman served as head of home entertainment for Orion Pictures from 1987 to late 1996. Orion was a prosperous independent studio in those days that turned out a steady stream [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content