Fallen Idol (Ratings, That Is)
A two-hour American Idol finale that saw 17-year-old Jordin Sparks crowned the sixth Idol winner -- over Blake Lewis -- drew a 17.2 rating and a 28 share Wednesday night representing 29.5 million viewers, according to Nielsen overnight ratings. (A ten-minute overrun was not taken into account in the overnights. Final figures should push the result somewhat higher.) While those numbers were impressive, they paled compared to those for last year's finale, which saw 36.4 million people tune in. Giving the talent contest some solid competition was the two-hour season finale of ABC's Lost which averaged a 7.9/13, or 13.66 million viewers. Even a repeat of CSI: NY on CBS performed well, pulling a 7.1/12 or 10.22 million viewers. By contrast, NBC barely got out of the starting gate. A repeat of a two-hour Saturday Night Live special registered a 2.8/5 -- barely a blip on the Nielsen scale. It was followed by a Dateline interview with Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, which recorded a 3.3/5.