‘SNL Election Special’ Ratings Get Strong Vote, ‘Monday Night Football’ Steady

Dominic Patten
Deadline

On the eve of the election, America sat down in front of the TV last night for some satire, some singing and some football – with the first two scoring for NBC and the latter giving ESPN some NFL relief.

In the end, Monday Night Football will likely win the night on both broadcast and cable, and the trend looks good in metered market results with last night’s 31-25 Seattle Seahawks win over the Buffalo Bills was up 8% from last week. With a controversial call that didn’t see Seahawks quarterback Richard Sherman penalized by officials for what the NFL now say was an act of unnecessary roughness against Bills’ Dan Carpenter, the 8:15 – 11:54 PM game on ESPN got a 7.8 MM rating. In a season that has seen the NFL and its broadcasting partners face falling ratings, MNF’s result last night is steady flag flying for the Disney-owned sports channel.

Over on the Big 4, Monday was all about belting out a tune and get one last mock in on Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton – which means it was win for NBC. Up 29% overall among adults 18-49 over its Halloween primetime, NBC drew a 2.2/7 rating last night with 9.26 total million viewers.

The Voice (2.3/7) was up 15% in the key demo over its October 31 8-10 PM show and the top show of the night. The 2016 SNL Election Special (2.1/7) followed and snagged the number #2 spot of Monday demowise. Now, there wasn’t a 2012 version of a SNL Election Special but the weekly late night show did pump out a couple of politically themed Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday specials four years ago. Putting apples to apple juice, compared to the September 20, 2012 special, last night was up 31% among the 18-49s. Next to the September 27, 2012 Thursday special, The 2016 SNL Election Special was up 40% – proving while America might strongly disapprove of both candidates, they love to see them made fun of.

ABC had a bit of NFL bump with pre-emptions in the Buffalo market that may leave the fast affiliate numbers tentative. As it is right now, Dancing With The Stars (1.6/5) and Conviction (0.7/3) up a tenth and down a tenth respectively from their last originals. On the CW, Supergirl (0.7/3) and Jane The Virgin (0.5/2) are both up a tenth from their October 31 shows.

After a tepid Halloween outing and an NFL pre-emption last week, Kevin Can Wait (1.7/6) was up a strong 31% over the final numbers demo. Man With A Plan (1.4/4) and 2 Broke Girls (1.4/4) are both up a tenth over their October 31 final numbers, which were adjusted down from the fast affiliates. The Odd Couple (1.1/3) and Scorpion (1.1/4) were up 22% and even with last week’s final numbers respectively.

Tonight there is nothing on the Big 4 but Election Night coverage – and, though some of it will undoubtedly make you laugh, we don’t mean of the SNL kind.

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