Jimmy Fallon made his long awaited debut on The Tonight Show Monday night, and now the ratings have come in. Fallon’s ratings were exceptional, Fallon raked in an average 3.8 rating for adult ages 18-49, and 11.31 million viewers to top it off. This has been the second biggest audience for The Tonight Show. Jay Leno’s final episode is the highest for The Tonight Show with ratings at an all time high of 14.64 million viewers, and this gave The Tonight Show its highest viewership in 15 years.
With the Olympics also airing on NBC, this gives Jimmy Fallon a great advantage of viewership, because all viewers have to do is wait until the Olympics are over to watch The Tonight Show. This advantage gave Jimmy an 80% dominance over Jimmy Kimmel’s show on ABC, and David Letterman on CBS. Kimmel and Letterman better step their game up if they dont want to lose any viewers.
The 3.8 rating for adult ages 18-49 is a major increase from Fallon’s previous show Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, which had a rating of 2.1 for his final Late Night episode.
For these ratings Jimmy had to bring some star power, and yes he did. His first guests were Will Smith, and U2. Fallon even had surprise guests such as Stephen Colbert, Robert De Niro, Tina fey and other A-list celebrities. Fallon even had U2 perform on top of the Rockefeller Center Rooftop for a two-song concert.
However, this was the first episode for The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon, so it was pretty obvious to viewers that Fallon was nervous in the beginning, but who wouldn’t be? This is the career move Jimmy Fallon has been waiting for his entire life. Eventually Fallon will be just as comfortable as Leno was with 22 years of being the host of The Tonight Show under his belt.
A major overlooked fact is that this is the first time The Tonight Show has been in New York City since 1972, where the show had its start. The Tonight Show is NBC’s crown Jewel, because it has always been NBC’s number 1 rated show. NBC has taken advantage of transitions of new hosts for viewership. Some viewers may be disappointed with Leno leaving, but change is always good, and the ratings demonstrate that.
It’s exciting to see what else Jimmy Fallon will bring to the table for his upcoming The Tonight Show episodes. Tune in to find out what else The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon will have on NBC this week.