37.3 million viewers watched American Idol 6′s debut, its second-highest rated episode ever

Despite less-than-positive reviews and reactions from critics, American Idol 6 was watched by more viewers than any other episode of the series ever, with the exception of the second-season finale.

An average of 37.3 million viewers tuned in last night, according to Variety. Last season, 35.5 million people watched the first episode, while an average of 36.3 million watched the finale.

As Variety notes, that “makes it the highest-rated entertainment telecast in adults 18-49 on any net since the series finale of NBC’s ‘Friends’ in May 2004.” It’s also “43% higher in adults 18-49 than the season premiere of ABC’s ‘Grey’s Anatomy.’”

Unsurprisingly, The Hollywood Reporter says that “it could have been the biggest premiere in the 20-year history of Fox Broadcasting.”

‘Idol’ bigger than ever [Variety]
37.3 mil tune in for ‘Idol’ premiere, a Fox record [Hollywood Reporter]

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.