4.3 Million Watched the Emmys, a New Low

The Emmy Awards ratings collapse continues.

An audience of 4.3 million people watched the Emmys on Fox on Monday night, the lowest viewership since records have been kept, according to preliminary Nielsen data. In 2022, the Emmys garnered 5.9 million viewers, the previous low.

The ratings have put the Emmys dangerously close to the Tony Awards, which for decades has drawn a significantly smaller audience. But in June, 4.3 million people tuned into the Tonys, an increase from its previous ceremony.

The final Emmy numbers, which will be released on Wednesday, will probably increase somewhat from the preliminary figures.

The Emmys had a lot going against it. The ceremony had been delayed by four months because of last year’s screenwriter and actor strikes, the most significant postponement for the event in more than two decades.

Indeed, the competition was stiff on Monday night. The Emmys went head-to-head against a Monday night football playoff game and the Iowa caucuses.

Ratings for the football game, between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, were not yet available but first round playoff games generally draw more than 25 million viewers. Roughly 4.7 million people tuned into the three big cable news networks between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. for Iowa returns, according to the preliminary Nielsen data.

The Emmys also faced competition from other award shows. All the big winners on Monday night — “Succession,” “The Bear” and “Beef” — had been honored at the Golden Globes last week, and the Critics Choice Awards on Sunday night.

Yet the Emmys even had trouble holding its own against a rerun of a network television show. A repeat of “NCIS” on CBS at 8 p.m. on Monday night — which had the benefit of a lead-in from another playoff football game — drew 4.9 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen data.

Most other major award shows — despite lower audience figures compared with a decade ago — have seen ratings rebound recently. Oscar ratings have ticked up two years in a row. So have the Grammys. Even the scandal-plagued Golden Globes saw a big increase in audience last week.

The Emmys telecast, which was broadcast on Fox and hosted by Anthony Anderson, cannot be blamed. The ceremony got generally warm reviews, with critics appreciating the number of cast reunions — including “Cheers,” “Ally McBeal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” — that were staged in honor of the 75th Anniversary of the awards.

The Emmys will not be gone long. The next ceremony will be in September, and broadcast on ABC.

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