Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly hit a new ratings low in its most recent installment.
The newsmagazine was pushed to 9 p.m. Eastern because of the telecast of the rain-delayed Brickyard 400 on NBC. The NASCAR race had about 5.9 million viewers, but more than half of the audience apparently reached for the remote once the Megyn Kelly show started.
Nielsen data indicates that only 2.71 million viewers stayed to watch. By way of comparison, her July 16 episode attracted 3.1 million total watchers, so the trend seemingly is not her friend.
In the 9 p.m. time slot, Steve Harvey’s Funderdome finished first with 4.2 9 million viewers. Megyn Kelly’s program finished ahead of Candy Crush on CBS, however.
The popular Game of Thrones also airs at 9 p.m., and may be a factor, but only a relatively small portion of the U.S. population subscribes to HBO.
Had Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly aired at its usual time slot, it would again have lost badly to 60 Minutes and America’s Funniest Home Videos reruns.
In its June 4 premiere, Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly pulled in 6.1 million viewers, but it has been on the decline ever since.
In fairness, TV viewership is generally down in the summer months, which makes it a challenging time to launch any new show, particularly one focused on news content. Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly will go dark once NFL football resumes on NBC. Whether it returns after football season is now an open question.
“She slightly improved in the 18-49 demo, getting a 0.5 rating compared to her 0.4 rating the previous two weeks,” Breitbart News noted about Sunday evening’s edition and the advertiser-coveted demographic.
The former Fox News Channel anchor who hosted the high-rated Kelly File officially went to work for NBC News on May 1 after declining a lucrative offer to stay at FNC. Her primary gig involves taking over the 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., Monday through Friday time slot on NBC; it’s yet to be nailed down as to whether that hour will still be designated as part of the Today franchise.
Megyn Kelly’s NBC morning show will premiere on September 25 in front of a live audience. There may or may not be any correlation with her Sunday night ratings and the likelihood of success in the competitive daypart.
According to Roger Friedman of Showbiz 411, Megyn Kelly in the morning could also fall short of expectations.
“I do think NBC’s audience equates Kelly with Trump and Fox and doesn’t want to listen to her. When she comes up against Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest this fall, she’s likely doomed. And it won’t take long for Andy Lack to pull her if the ratings tank. The Today show will not be sacrificed to Megyn Kelly. You can bet the house on that.”
As the Inquisitr has similarly outlined, those Fox News viewers disillusioned with Megyn Kelly over all the anti-Trump content on The Kelly File seem unlikely to follow her to NBC. On the flip side, more liberal NBC viewers could be reluctant to welcome Megyn Kelly into their living rooms because of her FNC resume.
Or, as an Inquisitr commenter previously observed, “The left hates her and the right has disowned her.”
That said, it may be very premature to count Megyn Kelly out, especially in just sifting through summer ratings, but the former corporate lawyer, 46, has yet to demonstrate what might be considered crossover appeal.
With its high-profile hire, NBC is paying Megyn Kelly big bucks, so she may be too big to fail, to borrow a phrase from the banking industry. No doubt the network will do all it can to boost ratings for her fall debut through its promotional infrastructure.
[Featured Image by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP Images]