TV Ratings: Early Oscars numbers for Seth MacFarlane and ‘Argo’ are positive

Fast National ratings for Sunday, February 24, 2013.
The combination of a blockbuster slate of Best Picture nominees — relatively speaking — plus buzzed-about host Seth MacFarlane appears to have given a ratings boost to Sunday’s Academy Awards telecast.
Due to the live nature of the show, all early figures are preliminary and won’t become final until the end of the day, but among adults 18-49, the 85th Academy Awards did a 12.1 rating, which was up by 19 percent over last year’s Fast Nationals. And last year’s numbers took a big jump between Fast Nationals, which really only reflect time period data and not the show itself, and final totals.
ABC broke its red carpet coverage into a trio of different primetime segments and each of them was up from last year, peaking with an 9.2 rating among adults 18-49 in the 8 p.m. half-hour.
Led by animation repeats, FOX was second for Sunday night among adults 18-49, while CBS was second overall. The night’s only real piece of new original counterprogramming was “The Amazing Race,” which dropped by 28 percent from last Sunday’s premiere and did a 1.8 rating among adults 18-49.
Here are the preliminary numbers…
Among adults 18-49, ABC averaged a 9.8 rating among adults 18-49, tops in the key demographic. FOX averaged a 1.3 key demo rating for Sunday night, followed by CBS’ 1.0 rating and the 0.8 key demo rating for NBC.
Overall, ABC averaged an estimated 32.43 million viewers and a 19.2 rating/28 share for Sunday primetime. CBS was far back in second with a 3.7/5 and 5.69 million viewers. FOX’s 1.7/3 and 2.87 million viewers and the 1.8/3 and 2.8 million viewers for NBC followed.
[Univision averaged 2.32 million viewers and a 0.8 rating among adults 18-49 for Sunday night.]
7 p.m. – ABC’s Oscars red carpet coverage averaged 21.59 million viewers and a 5.7 rating among adults 18-49 to win the 7 p.m. hour. CBS’ “60 Minutes” was second with 8.27 million viewers and a 1.3 key demo rating. “Dateline” had NBC in third with 4.085 million viewers and in fourth with a 0.8 key demo rating, compared to the 2.48 million viewers and 1.0 key demo rating for FOX’s repeats of “Bob’s Burgers” and “The Cleveland Show.”
8 p.m. – The end of red carpet coverage and the start of the Oscars averaged 36.93 million viewers and an 11.1 rating among adults 18-49 for ABC in the 8 p.m. hour. CBS’ “The Amazing Race” hit series lows with 6.78 million viewers and a 1.8 key demo rating. FOX’s repeats of “The Simpsons” and “The Cleveland Show” averaged 3.22 million viewers and a 1.4 key demo rating, beating the 3.21 million viewers and 0.8 key demo rating for NBC’s “Off Their Rockers” repeat.
9 p.m. – The Oscars telecast was up to 37.455 million viewers and an 11.7 rating among adults 18-49 for ABC in the 9 p.m. hour. CBS’ repeat of “The Mentalist” was second overall with 4.44 million viewers and tied for third with a 0.7 key demo rating. FOX’s repeats of “Family Guy” and “American Dad” averaged 2.92 million viewers and a 1.3 key demo rating. Another “Saturday Night Live” decade special repeat did 1.91 million viewers and a 0.7 key demo rating on NBC.
10 p.m. – The primetime portion of the Oscars concluded with 33.76 million viewers and a 10.8 rating among adults 18-49, though the show continued for a full hour. CBS’ “Good Wife” repeat averaged 3.29 million viewers and a 0.5 key demo rating, while NBC’s “SNL” special averaged 1.98 million viewers and a 0.8 key demo rating.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change, particularly in the case of live events.