I’m sure NBC didn’t need another reason to show why getting rid of Conan was a mistake (I’m seeing a trend here), but they got one anyway. It seems the Tonight Show has experienced some low ratings this summer. They are lower than Conan’s numbers last year and, in fact, are the lowest in the show’s history.
Since the end of the broadcast season, Leno is averaging 3.8 million viewers and a 1.0 adults 18-49 rating. That’s a 12% improvement in total audience compared with O’Brien, though off 23% in the demo and down in both measurements compared with Leno’s performance two years ago.
So, his total viewership is a bit higher, but the key demographics are down. They 18-49 range is what advertisers market to. So Leno draws older viewers. Much older. His average viewer age is 56, compared to Conan’s 46.