Jersey Shore ratings down but it’s still TV’s top show for the kids

Jersey Shore ended its fourth season on Thursday, and though ratings were down from both the start of this season and the end of last season, it still packs a drunken punch, and is the top show among people 12 to 34 on TV.

That’s according to MTV, which said in a press release that it averaged 5.4 million viewers that age and “was the #1 series across all television this past season.” The finale even beat broadcast shows among viewers 18 to 49.

But it may have reached its peak. The season began with a record 8.8 million viewers, and its episodes averaged 7.3 million viewers, but the finale was only watched by 6.6 million people. That follows the same trend as last season, which had fewer viewers for its finale than its premiere, but Thursday’s episode had about one million fewer viewers than last season’s finale in March.

The show will be back, of course: a repeat of the reunion with new footage added will air Thursday, and the next season will debut in January, with the cast just in New Jersey, where they belong.

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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, 37, 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.