Winfrey Interview With Prince Harry, Meghan Tops 18 Million Viewers

HOLLYWOOD (CNS) - Oprah Winfrey's interview with Prince Harry and his wife Meghan drew the second-largest audience for an entertainment program since the 2020 Oscars, trailing only CBS' post-Super Bowl premiere of “The Equalizer.''

The two-hour interview that aired Sunday night on CBS averaged 17.813 million viewers, according to live-plus-same-day figures released Tuesday by Nielsen.

CBS also had the only other prime-time program between March 1 and Sunday to average more than 10 million viewers, “60 Minutes.'' The venerable newsmagazine show averaged 10.038 million viewers, 23.5% more than its 8.127 million average when it was first the previous week.

CBS also had the most-watched scripted program, the action drama “NCIS,'' third for the week averaging 9.609 million viewers, and the most-watched comedy, “Young Sheldon,'' fifth for the week averaging 7.71 million.

The two-hour spring season premiere of the NBC singing competition “The Voice,'' was the most-watched non-CBS program, averaging 7.901 million viewers, putting it fourth for the week. An hourlong edition the following night was eighth, averaging 6.361 million viewers.

CBS finished first in the network race for the seventh consecutive week and ninth time in the 24-week-old 2020-21 television season, averaging 6.02 million viewers.

The order of finish behind CBS among the five major English-language broadcast networks was the same as the previous five weeks. ABC was second, averaging 3.47 million viewers, and NBC third, averaging 3.21 million. Fox was fourth, averaging 2.49 million viewers for its 15 hours of prime-time programming. The CW was fifth, averaging 570,000 for its 13 hours.

CBS, ABC and NBC each aired 22 hours of prime-time programming for the week.

The procedural drama “9-1-1'' was Fox's  most-watched program for the seventh consecutive week, averaging 6.41 million viewers, putting it seventh for the week.

ABC's most-watched program was “Celebrity Wheel of Fortune,''  13th for the week, averaging 5.717 million viewers.

For the second time in the two weeks it has aired, the superhero drama “Superman & Lois'' was The CW's most-watched program, averaging 1.239 million viewers, 104th among broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.

Viewership was down 29% from the 1.745 million average for its premiere. Viewership for second episodes of broadcast programming is almost always lower than the premieres.

The only scripted premiere on the five major broadcast networks, the NBC science fiction series “Debris,'' was first in its 10 p.m. time slot March 1, fourth among the week's shows beginning at 10 p.m. and 23rd overall, averaging 4.376 million viewers, following the spring season premiere of “The Voice.''

The premiere of the six-episode ABC News magazine “Soul of a Nation'' averaged 1.905 million viewers, 65th among broadcast programs.

Despite drawing a record-low audience among available figures, the week's most-watched prime-time cable program was Sunday's NBA All-Star Game, whose simulcast on TNT and TBS averaged 5.943 million viewers, 10th for the week. The previous low was 6.33 million viewers in 2008. Figures date back to 1990.

The game's first one hour, 35 minutes aired opposite “Oprah with Meghan and Harry: A CBS Primetime Special" in the Eastern and Central time zones, where the bulk of the nation's population lives.

Official viewership for nearly all forms of programming has decreased because of increased viewing of streaming programming, including the same program shown on traditional television.

Fox News Channel was the most-watched cable channel in prime-time for the sixth consecutive week, averaging 2.365 million viewers. MSNBC second for the second consecutive week, averaging 1.877 million.

Coverage of the NBA All-Star Game, Skills Challenge and 3-Point Contest lifted TNT to third, five spots higher than the previous week, averaging 1.414 million viewers,  59.4% higher than its 887,000 average the previous week.

CNN was fourth after five consecutive third-place finishes, averaging 1.247 million viewers, 2.8% less than its 1.283 million average the previous week.

MSNBC had nine of the top 20 prime-time cable programs, Fox News Channel had eight, TNT two and The History Channel one.

For the second consecutive week and eighth time in 12 weeks, an episode of the Univision telenovela “Vencer el desamor'' was the most-watched Spanish-language program, with the Wednesday episode averaging 1.753 million viewers, 70th among broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.

Univision was the most-watched Spanish-language network for the 66th consecutive week and 68th time in 69 weeks, averaging 1.28 million viewers. Telemundo was second, averaging 990,000 viewers followed by UniMas (620,000), Estrella TV (130,000) and Azteca America (50,000).

ABC's “World News Tonight with David Muir'' was the most-watched network nightly newscast for the 66th consecutive week, the 117th time in 118 weeks and the 169th time in 171 weeks, averaging 9.261 million viewers.

“NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt'' was second, averaging 7.488 million viewers, followed by the “CBS Evening News with Norah O'Donnell,'' which averaged 5.496 million viewers.

The week's 10 most-watched prime-time programs were CBS'  ”Oprah with Meghan and Harry: A CBS Primetime Special,'' “60 Minutes'' and “NCIS''; the Monday edition of NBC's “The Voice''; CBS' “Young Sheldon'' and “FBI''; Fox's “9-1-1''; the Tuesday edition of “The Voice''; CBS' “Blue Bloods''; and the TNT-TBS simulcast of the NBA All-Star Game.

Photo: Getty Images

Copyright 2021, City News Service, Inc.

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content