The second episode of “Empire” after the arrest of one of its stars, Jussie Smollett, was the lowest rated in the series’ history.
The March 20 episode scored a 1.1 rating in the 18-49 demo, and was watched by just under 4 million total viewers. Last week’s midseason premiere also struggled, with a 1.3 rating and 4.4 million viewers, which means the show dipped by 11% in the ratings and 10% in total viewership since last week.
While that isn’t as bad as the 17% ratings and 13% viewership dip from the show’s final episode of 2018 to the midseason premiere, last night’s episode was still down on the previous “Empire” ratings low, which came on Halloween 2018, when the show had a 1.2 rating and 4.2 million viewers.
“Empire” showrunner Lee Daniels said in an Instagram video that he and the cast of the show “have experienced pain, anger, sadness and frustration,” in the wake of Smollett’s arrest.
Elsewhere on the night, “Survivor” on CBS was the highest rated and most watched show of the night, achieving a 1.3 rating and 7 million total viewers. Close behind was ABC’s “The Goldbergs,” which came in with a 1.2 rating and just under 4.5 million viewers.
In the overall network race, CBS and Fox tied for first, both with a 1.1 rating in the 18-49 demo. CBS was first in total viewers, with an average of 6.3 million across their two shows, “Survivor” and “Seal Team.”
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