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Strong Return for 'American Idol' - Despite Fox's Counterprogramming

13 March 2018, 03:00 | Myron Mathis

Strong Return for 'American Idol' - Despite Fox's Counterprogramming

Strong Return for 'American Idol' - Despite Fox's Counterprogramming

That figure is roughly on par with the show's final and 15th season on Fox, when it launched with about 11 million viewers, then fell to about 8 million during subsequent weeks, before closing out its historic run with 13.3 million viewers on April 7, 2016.

"American Idol" is back, and the early ratings suggest ABC's revival is off to a strong start.

The "Idol" opening numbers were better than all but two of the telecasts during Fox's final season of the show, including the January 6, 2016 season opener, which was seen by 11 million people, Nielsen said. During the second night of auditions, judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan will meet Venezuela-born singer (and dancer) Michelle Sussett. So, the only familiar face (that you saw in the previous seasons) is Ryan Seacrest, who has been hosting the show since its conception in 2002.

American Idol airs Sunday and Monday nights at 8/7c on ABC. Michelle's boots weren't just made for walkin' but dancin' too.

ABC on Sunday night also had to contend with Fox's Old School counter-programming strategy, in which the former conservator of "Idol" attempted to steal share from the premiere by airing an archived interview with NFL Hall of Famer/double-homicide suspect O.J. Simpson.

For the most part, the new "American Idols" gained positive reviews from critics. Viewership steadily increased seasons two through seven, seeing its peak in seasons four through eight, when premiere nights drew in 30 million or more viewers.

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