‘American Idol’ Finale A Ratings Bust

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american idol finale American Idol Finale A Ratings Bust

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

The American Idol season 11 finale was the least watched finale in the show’s history.

Wrapping up the season on a sour note, the Idol finale drew only about 21.5 million viewers, compared to the 29.3 fans who tuned in last year.  The glamorized talent show has been showing signs of fatigue all season with a 25 to 30% decline in viewership compared to last season.

In January, at the start of season 11, Idol saw its numbers fall below the 20-million mark for the first time since 2002.  Even with the audience slide, Idol remains the most-watched singing competition on TV.  During Wednesday night’s finale, Ryan Seacrest announced a record 132-million votes were cast between [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Phillip Phillips[/lastfm] and runner-up J[lastfm link_type="artist_info"]essica Sanchez[/lastfm].

Honestly, Idol will probably never be canceled, but for every [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Kelly Clarkson[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Carrier Underwood[/lastfm] and [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Jennifer Hudson[/lastfm] the show produces, it also gives us a [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Taylor Hicks[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Ruben Studdard[/lastfm] and [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Lee DeWyze[/lastfm].

Yes, Idol is showing its age, but as long as it’s a cash cow for the network it won’t be disappearing any time soon.

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