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ABC's DWTS Recap Special Outdraws Part 1 of 'Idol' Finale

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ABC's DWTS Recap Special Outdraws Part 1 of 'Idol' Finale

Up against the 2-hour finale of NBC's "The Voice" and part 1 of Fox's "American Idol" finale, ABC finished as the most-watched TV network on the final Tuesday of the season (No. 1 in each half-hour), outdrawing runner-up NBC by 3.5 million viewers (13.7 million vs. 10.2 million). It was ABC's 3rd straight night to rank as the No. 1 network in Total Viewers, and 4th time in 5 nights. The Net ran a very competitive No. 2 on the evening in Adults 18-49 (2.1/7), beating FOX with "Idol" and the series debut of "I Wanna Marry Harry" by 75% (1.2/4) and CBS' original lineup by 133% (0.9/3).

ABC's 18th season finale of "Dancing with the Stars" was the night's dominant, most-watched TV show (14.9 million). The ABC unscripted series was a strong No. 2 on the night in Adults 18-49, outdelivering "Idol" by 41% (2.4/7 vs. 1.7/6).

The Net marked its most-watched Tuesday overall in 1-1/2 years - since 11/27/12.

"DWTS: Road to the Finals" (8:00-9:00 p.m. - 11.4 million and 1.6/6 in AD18-49):
In the 8 o'clock hour, ABC's "DWTS: Road to the Finals" recap special was the most-watched TV show in its slot (11.4 million), topping the first part of Fox's "American Idol" finale by 4.8 million viewers (6.6 million) and NBC's "The Voice" recap special by 4.0 million (7.4 million). In addition, the ABC special nearly tied "Idol" in The Hour with Adults 18-49 (1.6/6 vs. 1.7/6).

"Dancing with the Stars" (9:00-11:00 p.m. - 14.9 million and 2.4/7 in AD18-49):
From 9:00-11:00 p.m., ABC's "Dancing" finale faced a 2-hour season finale of "The Voice" for the first time ever, and came out on top by a wide margin. Please Note: In the past, a "Dancing" finale has never faced a finale of "The Voice." Head to head, "Dancing" outdrew "The Voice" by 3.3 million viewers (14.9 million vs. 11.6 million). In addition, "DWTS" ranked No. 2 in the time period among all key Adults (AD18-34/AD18-49/AD25-54). Olympic Gold Medalist Meryl Davis was crowned champion of Season 18 and awarded the coveted mirror ball trophy.

Despite going opposite the 2-hour "The Voice" finale, "Dancing" was up over its most recent finale in November with Total Viewers (14.8 million on 11/26/13) and on par with its year-ago May finale (15.2 million on 5/21/13). In addition, the show spiked over its Fall finale with Adults 18-34 (+14%) and Women 18-49 (+21%).

"DWTS" generated ABC's biggest non-sports audience in the 2-hour time period in 1 year and its top Adult 18-49 number in nearly 5 months - since 5/21/13 and 12/31/13, respectively.

A note about increasing DVR penetration and year-to-year rating comparisons: Year-to-year rating comparisons based on the Live + Same Day data stream are distorted by the level of DVR penetration in the Nielsen sample, which has jumped up to 49% currently, from 47% at the same point in 2013. More viewers are watching shows on their own timetables, which may not be reflected in the overnight next day numbers. The only truly valid year-
to-year comparison would be one based on the Live + 7 Day metric, once those stats are released by Nielsen.

Source: The Nielsen Company, Fast Affiliate Live + Same Day Ratings for 05/20/14.

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