Idol ratings are down ten percent
Should producers be worried? Maybe just a little.
According to Nielsen, the ratings for the Tuesday night performance shows have dropped about 10 percent compared to last season (from about 31 million to 28 million viewers). And last Wednesday's results show (April 4) reportedly had the lowest ratings of the season.
Producer Nigel Lythgoe isn't sweating the drop in ratings. He said, "Even if we lost 50 percent of our audience, we'd still be in the top three shows in the country."
Nice try, Nigel, but that's not exactly correct. If Idol's numbers did drop in half, it could be beat (according to March 27th ratings) by CSI, House, and Dancing with the Stars (both nights). Of course, Idol has a long way to go before it alienates 16 million fans and sinks into fifth place just ahead of Shark or 'Til Death.
Lythgoe, however, isn't blaming Sanjaya's hair for the ratings dive. He thinks the fact that Daylight Savings Time came three weeks earlier this year, is the reason a small portion of the audience has drifted away.
I imagine that extending the results show isn't going to win back those fans who have drifted away. If anything, it might be time for Idol's producers to acknowledge that "sometimes less is more."