Jimmy Fallon attracted a predictably big crowd for his first night as host of The Tonight Show. Per preliminary Nielsen data, Fallon’s premiere notched a 7.1 household rating in the nation’s 56 biggest TV markets. While that’s a bit lower than Leno’s final show earlier this month (9.2 household rating), it tied the ratings for Conan O’Brien’s first-ever Tonight back in 2009 and was easily Fallon’s top-rated show ever as a late-night host. In terms of viewers under 50, Fallon notched a 3.4 rating in the top 25 cities. That’s good, but not amazing: O’Brien’s last night on Tonight did a 4.8 demo rating back in 2010. In any case, opening-night numbers in late-night are always a bit meaningless, given all the hype surrounding debuts — but last night’s are particularly wonky. On the one hand, airing during the Olympics gave Fallon a huge advantage that, for example, O’Brien didn’t have for his June 1 kickoff. On the other, Fallon started at midnight, rather than 11:35, and that no doubt depressed viewership a bit, since viewership in late-night always takes a big drop after midnight. Bottom line: Lots and lots of people saw Fallon’s first show, and even more are talking about it today thanks to all of the show’s viral moments.
Watch our new series!
Vulture’s Secret History of Television
Who First Said ‘Motherf*cker’ on TV?View all videos
Most Viewed Stories
Game of Thrones Will Run for at Least 8 Seasons, and at Most, Infinity
Jon Stewart’s Final The Daily Show Guests Are All Comedians
Amy Schumer Came Up With Even More Insults for That Guy’s Big Dick
9 Embarrassing Ways Brands Are Responding to Drake and Meek Mill’s Beef
Amy Schumer Is Now the Human Pyramid on Which Jennifer Lawrence Stands
Sean Penn and Charlize Theron Are Living Out Your Worst Breakup Fears
Everything You Need to Know About Chris Hemsworth’s Prosthetic Penis in Vacation
What’s New on Netflix: August 2015
Candace Cameron Bure on Fuller House and Separating Church and Career
All 74 Led Zeppelin Songs, Ranked From Worst to Best
Latest News from VultureIan McShane Joins Game of Thrones Season 6
McShane plays scary men of authority better than anyone else.Bill Nye Reads Mean Tweets, Responds Seriously
He also suggests that watching paint dry could be interesting, because Science.Ok, So Channing Tatum Is OFFICIALLY Gambit Now
The actor finally signed a real deal to play the card-throwing mutant.Roddy Piper's Anti-Epic Fight Scene in They Live
The film’s iconic six-minute fight is a seminal moment of beefcake Dadaism.Best of Enemies Is the Saddest Film of the Year
William F. Buckley and Gore Vidal engage in political bloodsport.Snoop Dogg's Tour of European Legal Trouble Continues
The rapper was stopped by Italian customs for carrying $422,000 in cash.Nicki Minaj Allegedly Dumps Meek Mill, Poor Guy
This guy is having an awful week.Pro Wrestler ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper Dies at 61
"I've come to chew bubblegum and kick ass ... and I'm all out of bubblegum."The Creators of UnREAL Have No Shortage of Options for Season 2
“It’s like a starfish: You cut off a leg and one grows back in another direction."What’s New on Hulu: August 2015
Here's what's new on Hulu this August.
"Did your dick get stung by 90 bees?"Kendrick Lamar Gets Extra Theatrical in His New Video
Has Kendrick ever considered acting?Candace Cameron Bure on Fuller House and Separating Church and Career
And why it will be as family-friendly as ever.Watch Katherine Heigl Tearfully Come Out As a Lesbian in This Jenny’s Wedding Clip
In this movie, her love interest is Gilmore Girls star Alexis Bledel.Amy Schumer Is Now the Human Pyramid on Which Jennifer Lawrence Stands
#FriendshipGoals9 Embarrassing Ways Brands Are Responding to Drake and Meek Mill’s Beef
You won't believe who chimed in.This Coach Taylor Movie-Theater PSA Is As Close As You’re Going to Get to a Friday Night Lights Movie, So Enjoy!
Already crying.Roland Emmerich Discusses His Gay-Rights Drama Stonewall and Debuts the Exclusive Poster
"It was a huge challenge to make this movie," says the Independence Day director.Key & Peele: It’s Hard Forming Your Own Opinion About The Dark Knight, Okay?
Ooookay.Wet Hot American Summer’s Undefinable Brand of Smart Stupidity
Call it dumb-smart, its dumbness freshly imbued with a deep, winking self-awareness.