Ruh-roh? After drawing 22 million fans Wednesday, Thursday night's American Idol declined to a (still very healthy) 17.7 million viewers Thursday from 8 to 9 p.m. However, in the advertiser-beloved demo of adults under 50, Fox's veteran music competition dropped about 28 percent over its Wednesday average to an estimated 5.6 rating in preliminary Nielsen ratings (the fall-off was a less severe 20 percent if you just compare ratings from Wednesday's first hour). This isn't completely unexpected: Last year, the first Thursday episode of Idol fell about 25 percent from its Wednesday bow, and with CBS's The Big Bang Theory airing a much-promoted 100th episode last night, competition was a tad tougher this year. Indeed, CBS is noting that BBT, at least in the preliminary numbers, beat Idol from 8 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday in the 18 to 49 demo. [Update: Per Fox, updated final ratings show BBT and Idol tied in the 8-8:30 p.m. half-hour. Bazinga!] A year ago, Idol trounced the Chuck Lorre sitcom, and it was rare that any show, anywhere on TV, outdrew any half-hour of Idol in the demo. (Idol still brought in more overall viewers than BBT). So: Should we expect the folks at Fox to start making like the little Mad Men guy currently falling down your Vulture.com screen? Not yet. Even at these depressed numbers, Idol is still a very big show. But you know how producers always like to issue a preseason statement that this season, Idol has found "our best singers ever"? It would be helpful if that were actually true this year.
Most Viewed Stories
We'll Probably Never See Queen Elizabeth II Be This Sassy Ever Again
Jimmy Fallon and Paul Rudd's Recreation of a Styx Music Video Is So Good, It Might Transport You Back To 1981
What’s New on Netflix: May 2016
Behind Jamie and Claire’s Daybed Scene on Outlander
Man Thinks Amy Schumer Owes Him Photos if He Demands Them
Watch President Obama's Wonderful Correspondents’ Dinner Speech
Why the Ghostbusters Trailer Is the Most-Hated Movie Trailer on YouTube
Outlander’s Rosie Day on Suffocating Corsets, Time Travel, and Rape Culture
24 Outrageous Prince Stories
What’s Wrong With Game of Thrones’ Dorne Plot?
Latest News from VultureHaim's Cover of Fleetwood Mac's 'Dreams' Will Have You Seeing Crystal Visions in No Time
Players only love you when they're playing Rumours.You'll Probably Need Aloe Vera For All of the Burns From Larry Wilmore's Correspondents' Dinner Monologue
"I've been watching CNN a long time. I used to watch it back when it was a news network."Watch President Obama's Wonderful Correspondents’ Dinner Speech
"Helen Mirren is here tonight. I don’t even have a joke here, I just think Helen Mirren is awesome."Outlander’s Rosie Day on Suffocating Corsets, Time Travel, and Rape Culture
"You're not taught about women's history at school. They rush over the hardships that women had to endure."Behind Jamie and Claire’s Daybed Scene on Outlander
"We wanted it to be special."Outlander Recap: The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover
Sorry, Claire: No dinner party is complete without a fistfight.The Girlfriend Experience Recap: Mirror, Mirror
A client's death brings Christine an enormous inheritance — with strings attached.A Teacher Thought It Was a Good Idea to Show The Human Centipede 2 in Class, But It Really Wasn't
Director Tom Six responded that the movie should be required viewing in all schools.We'll Probably Never See Queen Elizabeth II Be This Sassy Ever Again
Revel in the royal shade.Man Thinks Amy Schumer Owes Him Photos if He Demands Them
"I will not take pictures with people anymore and it's because of this dude in Greenville."
But that might be a bit misleading.Prince’s Cornucopia of 2,000+ Unreleased Songs Has Reportedly Been Opened
This is the most exciting opening of a vault since Geraldo excavated Al Capone’s.The Original Ghostbusters is Returning to Theaters For a Very Limited, Very Spooky Engagement
I ain't afraid of no AMC Theaters.Jimmy Fallon and Paul Rudd's Recreation of a Styx Music Video Is So Good, It Might Transport You Back To 1981
So. Many. Wigs.Radiohead 'Knows Where You Live,' Teases the Long-Awaited Song 'Burn the Witch' With Creepy Leaflets
It's been gestating since at least 2003.The Flash Director Seth Grahame-Smith Leaves Film in a Hurry
He won't make his directorial debut with The Flash after all.Will Ferrell and Chad Smith Attempt Another Drum-Off, But in a Classic Rock and Roll Power Move, Get Other Musicians to Do the Drumming on Their Behalf
Who comes out victorious?Yee-haw Buckaroos, The Ranch is Renewed For Season 2
More Kutcher and Masterson for us.The Vampire Diaries Recap: Her Burden
Operation: Save Bonnie Bennett is a go, people!In a Continued Quest to Distance Himself From Jim Halpert, John Krasinski Will Star in Amazon's Jack Ryan
What a dreamboat CIA hero.