Dancing With The Stars TV Ratings: Finale Earns 6-Month Highs For ABC And More

Good news for TV Ratings for Dancing With The Stars. Our show moved up from 8th place during semi-finals week to 5th and 6th place during it’s Finale week. The viewership numbers may be a little down from last fall’s Season 15 Finale of 16.7 million, but, it was neck and neck with Season 16 finale ratings.

Below is more of the overall Primetime tv ratings and viewership numbers from the Star Tribune via Nielson’s TV ratings for November 25th to December 1st:

1. NFL Football Thanksgiving Special: Pittsburgh at Baltimore, NBC, 21.07 million.

2. “60 Minutes,” CBS, 18.09 million.

3. NFL Football: NY Giants at Washington, NBC, 17.75 million.

4. NFL Thursday Post-Game, Oakland at Dallas, CBS, 17.47 million.

5. “Dancing With the Stars Special” (Tuesday), ABC, 14.75 million.

6. “Dancing With the Stars,” ABC, 14.61 million.

7. NFL Football: San Francisco at Washington, ESPN, 13.16 million.

8. NFL Thanksgiving Pre-Kick, NBC, 12.67 million.

9. “NCIS: Los Angeles,” CBS, 12.32 million.

10. “The Walking Dead,” AMC, 12.05 million.

11. “Person of Interest,” CBS, 11.89 million.

12. NFL Pre-Kick, NBC, 11.71 million.

13. “The Voice,” NBC, 11.52 million.

14. “Castle,” ABC, 11.41 million.

15. “Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer,” CBS, 11.31 million.

ABC Media Net is also reporting these ratings and numbers….

ABC’s Monday Finale of “Dancing with the Stars” is the Top Entertainment Show And Outdraws NBC’s “The Voice” by its Largest Margin of the Season

Hitting a Season High, ABC is the Most-Watched Net on the Sweep’s Final Tuesday, With the “Dancing” Season Finale Finishing as the Night’s Dominant No. 1 TV Show

The “Dancing with the Stars” Finale Earns 6-Month Highs for ABC in its Time Period


“Dancing with the Stars” (8:00-10:01 p.m. – 14.6 million and 2.2/6 in AD18-49):

Building its numbers on night 1 of its 2-night season finale, ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” was Monday’s most-watched entertainment show for the 5th week in a row. Bill Engvall was the next celebrity dancer eliminated from the competition. Growing week to week in Total Viewers (+6%) and Adults 18-49 (+10%), “DWTS” drew its biggest audience since its season premiere and scored a 9-week high with young adults – since 9/16/13 and 9/23/13, respectively.


ABC finished as the dominant most-watched TV network on the final Tuesday of the November Sweep (+1.2 million over second-place CBS – 13.0 million vs. 11.8 million) and ranked No. 1 in Adults 18-49 (2.5/7-tied w/CBS). ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” finale stood as Tuesday’s most-watched TV show by 20% over runner-up CBS’ “NCIS: LA” (14.8 million vs. 12.3 million from 9:00-10:00 p.m.) and “S.H.I.E.L.D.” was night’s No. 1 scripted series in Adults 18-49.

“Dancing with the Stars” (9:01-11:00 p.m. – 14.8 million and 2.4/7 in AD18-49):

From 9:00-11:00 p.m., the season finale of “Dancing with the Stars” made ABC the No. 1 network in the 2-hour time period with Total Viewers and key Women (W18-49/W25-54), while ranking as the top broadcaster with Kids 2-11. Dominating its final half-hour from 10:30-11:00 p.m., as Amber Riley won the coveted Mirror Ball Trophy, “Dancing” delivered 15.6 million viewers and a 2.6/8 in Adults 18-49 to lead its nearest competition (CBS’ “Person of Interest” = 11.8 million and 2.1/6) by 3.8 million viewers and by 24% in young adults.

Let’s see if Heidi has something to add….

Heidi: Well, the “rank” means very little when it comes to ratings. Throw 15 football games up there and knock it out of the top 10 and that won’t hurt it as long as the same or more people are watching the show, if you know what I mean. The important points to come out of the above are that it is still beating the Voice in total viewer numbers AND it’s still growing week to week. Six percent growth from the semi-finals to the finals is nothing to sneeze at, for sure (take note, Maks fans).  The finale (results show) was down from the all star season…but what do you expect when people get OUT of the habit of watching DWTS on Tuesday night??  Not to mention that the ALL Star Season was a bit of an anomaly.  I think the producers were on crack when they thought that the ratings for that season were down because no one wants to see great dancing. Bull. Your show is aging, and TV viewership is falling across the board. You can’t look at it in a vacuum.  All TV continues to sink in viewer number – except probably cable.  People have more choices now.  Looking at it very simply…this is where the Rank plays a part. How can DWTS STILL be Top 10 show while still falling in ratings season after season?? Simple…because ALL TV is falling season after season. If DWTS were the only show with declining viewer numbers, it would have fallen out of the Top 10 by now.

Heidi Still: And for those who insist that a particular guest judge – be it Julianne OR Maks – has a dramatic impact on ratings…guess again. Here are the total viewers each week:

September 16 – 16.01
September 23 – 13.4
September 30 – 13.1
October 7 – 13
October 14 – 12.99
October 21 – 13.35
October 28 – 13.28
November 4 – 13.72
November 11 – 12.57 (pre-empted in Boston and Charlotte = 3% of the US Market)
November 18 – 13.8
November 25 – 14.2

As you can see, the season starts out very high and then drops consistently until week 5, when it starts inching it’s way back up again. If not for November 11th, it would show fairly consistent growth from a mid season low to the season finale. From what I can see, the only thing having a major impact on ratings was the pre-empting in Boston and Charlotte. Everything else falls on a very nice curve – very similar to curves shown when I graphed previous seasons. It appears that the theory that people want to watch bad dancing may not be true. How else do you explain that people tune in to the first show, then fall out until past the halfway point??