'American Idol' runs laps around Games with young viewers
Despite a shocking lack of, um, talent, on the first Guys Night of "American Idol" in primetime Wednesday the singing competition handily beat NBC's coverage of the Vancouver Winter Games, 23 million viewers to 19 million. It was like curling beating speed skating.
The singing competition's lead over the winter sports fest was even more pronounced among young viewers; 'Idol' led the Games in head-to-head competition by 76 percent among 18-49 year olds, who are the Holy Grail of Madison Avenue.
This is because the Games not only skew "chick" -- I know, counter-intuitive for sports programming, but let's face it, we're talking about figure skating and ice dancing in Aborigine costumes here -- they skew old. How old? Glad you asked. Nielsen has put out the stats on these Vancouver Games with just a few days left in the competition:
* Females compose 56% of the audience; Males make up 44%.
* Ratings among viewers age 55 and older are 82% higher than the national average. Conversely, ratings among teens are 57% lower than the average.
* Hispanic and African-American ratings are each 74% below the national average.
* Ratings are highest in the West Central region of the U.S. and lowest in the Southwest.
* Ratings in HD-capable homes are 14% higher than the national average. In DVR households, ratings are 12% higher.
For comparison sake, here are some stats for Super Bowl XLIV:
* Females compose 46% of the audience; Males make up 54%.
* Ratings among viewers age 55 and older are 15% higher than the national average. Conversely, ratings among teens are 20% lower.
* Hispanic ratings are 18% below the national average; African-American ratings are 49% below the national average.
* Ratings were highest in the East Central region of the U.S. and lowest in the Pacific region (this year's teams: the Indianapolis Colts and the New Orleans Saints).
Lisa de Moraes
February 25, 2010; 4:00 PM ET
Categories: "American Idol"
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