The ratings are in and a winner for this year’s battle of the late night shows has been declared: Stephen Colbert.
Thanks to a valiant effort and lots of Trump-inspired material, Colbert’s The Late Show has successfully bested its worthy opponent, Jimmy Fallon’s The Tonight Show in the 2016 – 2017 ratings.
According to Nielsen data that spans until May 19, Colbert’s CBS show has an average of 3.195 million viewers per episode, while Fallon is averaging 3.173 million on NBC, Variety reported.
That’s still pretty freaking close, Fallon. Yeesh.
Though Colbert had been struggling to gain a solid viewership and was reportedly “losing by more than a million viewers” this time last year, the late night host has been continually beating Fallon’s ratings this season, even throwing his staff members pizza parties to celebrate the victories.
The New York Times refers to the comeback as “one of the most surprising turnaround stories in recent television,” but Colbert admits he couldn’t have done it without Donald Trump and all of the political inspiration 2017 has unleashed on the world.
At a CBS presentation for advertisers, Colbert recently acknowledged his success, announcing, “It’s been a great year for Late Show. Thank you, Donald Trump.”
Despite the Late Show’s rise to the top, the Tonight Show is still scoring higher ratings with adults ages 18 to 49 – a key demographic for advertisers.
Fallon is averaging a 0.81 rating here, as compared to Colbert’s 0.58 rating.
Fallon may be down, Colbert, but he’s definitely not out.
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