"Idol" finale crowd hits 23 million
About 23.2 million people watched Simon Cowell's swan song on "American Idol" Wednesday night, according to early stats. Oh, and viewers voted to crown yet another scruffy Super-Safe Rocker Boy with soulful eyes winner of this alleged singing competition......zzzzzzzzzzz
"Idol's" Tuesday and Wednesday broadcasts were already secure of their status as the No. 1 and No. 2 shows of the TV season, respectively, going into this week's final performance and results episodes.
But Wednesday's two-plus-hour finale attracted the show's smallest audience since the franchise's very first season, when Kelly Clarkson was crowned "American Idol's" very first winner in the summer of 2002. An even 23 million tuned in to that episode. But who knows how many people tuned in to this past Wednesday's show just to see how Simon would bow out, and what unpredictable former judge Paula Abdul might say and/or do in making her triumphant one-night return to the show.
Early numbers for this past Wednesday do not include the several-minute overrun so final ratings could go up. But there's no way the numbers will wind up anywhere near the 28.8 million who watched last May's 8th season finale when Kris Allen was named Ford Motor Company's new "Idol" ad spokesman, er, the 2009 American Idol.
About 30 million bright-eyed fans tuned in to the very first episode of "Idol" this season.
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