Viewership Down For “Idol” Finale

American Idol winner Lee DeWyze

Lee DeWyze emerged victorious last night, as the ninth season of American Idol came to a close. The show drew 24.2 million total viewers, down 15.9% from the 28.8 million that watched last year’s Idol finale, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Last night was the lowest-rated season finale for the show since the first season, when Kelly Clarkson was the title. That finale earned 22.7 million viewers. The highest-rated finale happened in 2003, when Ruben Studdard won and 38 million viewers watched.

As the winner was revealed in the second hour, the show’s viewership on Wednesday night jumped dramatically. 19.7 million watched the first hour, while 26.5 million tuned in for the final hour, including the show’s seven minute overrun.


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