'The Office' wins Thursday finale ratings showdown


Image Credit: NBC

Nine season finales aired Thursday night and NBC’s one-hour celebrity-stuffed The Office closer came out on top.

The Office delivered 7.1 million viewers and a 3.8 preliminary rating among the adults 18-49 demographic, rising 12 percent from its finale last year (and only had to cast half of Hollywood to do it!). That beat the finales for Fox’s Bones (10 million, 3.2) ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy (9.6 million, 3.4) and CBS’ two-hour Red John showdown on The Mentalist (13.7 million, 2.7).

The Office was the only finale to post an increase compared to last year’s closer, though. Most ranged from being down a mild 9 percent (Parks & Recreation) to a steep 37 percent (Grey’s Anatomy).

Overall Fox won the night with American Idol (21.2 million, 6.2) ranking as the night’s highest-rated show.

CBS was second with finales for Big Bang Theory (11.1 million, 3.5) and Rules of Engagement (8.8 million, 2.5) leading into Mentalist.

ABC also had closers for Wipeout (5.6 million, 1.7) and Private Practice (7.5 million, 2.5). You know, ABC has been leaning more heavily on Wipeout, which started as just a summer show and now seems to be on every week to fill holes in ABC’s schedule. As a result, the series has taken a ratings tumble this year.

Though The Office was stretched to an hour and was the night’s top-rated scripted show, NBC was in fourth, thanks to repeats at 8 p.m. Back-to-back finale episodes of Parks & Recreation (3.9 million, 2.2) filled 10 p.m.


Comments (26 total) Add your comment
  • whatevs

    Wow, I hadn’t realized that the ratings for Grey’s had gone down so much. I stopped watching after last season, but I guess that shows that quality writing does matter sometimes.

    • tfs

      If quality writing mattered, Parks and Recreation would be the #1 show in the country.

      • whatevs

        That’s why I said sometimes.

      • Rich

        I wish I could live in a world where “Parks & Rec” trounced “American Idol” every week.

      • LMFAO

        It’s hard to believe that less than 4 million people watched Parks and Recreation. It’s a travesty that so many are missing the best comedy on TV.

  • Kem

    Bones beat out Grey’s!!!

    • Dave


    • AK

      Not where it matters: adults 18-49.

  • Michael

    I don’t get it, Grey’s had 9.6 million viewers and The Office had 7.1 million… so how is The Office the victor?

    • Kathryn

      in Adults 18-49 the “important” demographic

      • Tom

        And also in share. The percentage of TVs that were watching at the time. But I’m still confused on the numbers. Why the face?

  • Liv

    Yay Parks & Rec! Keep it up friends!

  • tomm

    I would have bet that Office would tank after ‘Michael’ left. But, show’s got legs.

    I only saw last few minutes and Darryl should be the new boss. Premise is sane boss with goofy workers,

  • tomm

    I hate Rob Lowe’s ‘Mr Perfect’ character, but I think that is the point.

  • gerritv

    Those numbers don’t seem right. It looks like the Office got the least pair of eyes. What’s going on here?

    • dan

      It depends on how the numbers are being reported: if it is “total viewers” then Fox (AI) and the CBS shows were tops, but if using the 18-49 demographic then “Office” did better. Truth is, more people were actually watching just about everything BUT “The Office” so the headline and opening paragraph are deceiving.

    • James Hibberd

      Broadcasters sell advertising off the adult demo. So it’s what they base their decisions on. So “who wins” is based on that since that’s what they’re all aiming for. A show can have a lot of viewers but if it’s tanking in the demo it will get cancelled (unfair, yes, but it’s the way the game is played … )

  • Mya

    Most of the articles written on the EW website are either so badly written or so misguided that I have stopped bothering to respond to any of them. You expect idiotic comments from alot of the usual suspects that show up on these threads but the asinine grammar, the constant rancid recaps, poor sentence structure within said recaps and articles, poor paragraph development, and deceptive wording are just a turn off to even caring about what has been written.
    If EW had writers that actually wrote things as they are rather than as they hope to hype them up to be, they would have a better image and some semblance of trustworthiness in their reporting.

    • liver

      You missed a comma in your comment. As such, I don’t care about anything you just said.

  • Mya

    Here’s a simple and effective way to report the ratings:

    American Idol Wins By A Landslide!

    Top 5 Shows in Viewers
    1. American Idol 21.2 million
    2. The Mentalist 13.7 million
    3. Big Bang Theory 11.1 million
    4. Bones 10 million
    5. Grey’s Anatomy 9.6 million

    Top 5 Shows Demo

    1. American Idol 6.2
    2. The Office 3.8
    3. Big Bang Theory 3.5
    4. Grey’s Anatomy 3.4
    5. Bones 3.2
    Final numbers subject to change.

  • Joe F

    mentalist kicked it. Never had an interest in the Office. it’s just too boring and slow. so how does 13.4 million people create a 2. something rating? and 7 million create a 3.4? guess hollywood never once hired somebody fluent in Mathematics

    • bill from ecuador

      @joe f even though 2 or 3 already explained it ur still dumb enough to doubt it..long story short : the mentalist is watched by a lot of old people n the office by people most likely to spend,buy,being influenced..n that’s what matters

    • liver

      And you’re incapable of educating yourself on how they calculate those numbers. Imagine the world we would live in if we made decisions only based on total numbers, rather than taking other metrics into consideration. We’d probably still be living in caves.

  • Kate

    While I watched it all live (and I think that should speak to the CW how many of us watch TVD and Nikita), my program guide did not indicate the Parks & Rec were even new episodes. I bet those DVR numbers will skyrocket the whole hour.

  • kim

    Grey’s shootin’ fest in last year’s finale is hard to outdo.

  • Erin

    I think The Mentalist (which had a great finale) would have done better if it was left in it’s perfect Tuesday slot after NCIS (where it used to kick the ass of NCIS). Instead they had to bring on that crappy NCIS:LA which is so subpar compared to the mothership.

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