In Depth

'Idol' Stays Strong in Wednesday Debut

The season premiere of “American Idol” continued Wednesday night and held on strong from its Tuesday performance. The Fox stalwart was off just 8% from last season's Wednesday premiere.

Last night’s two-hour “Idol” scored an 11.6 rating/29 share among adults 18-49, on par with its Tuesday performance, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research numbers. The show drew 29.9 million viewers, down just a few thousand from the previous night’s 30.1 million. (Click here for more info regarding "Idol's" performance from time-zone adjusted data.)

Compared with the Wednesday premiere last season, last night’s debut was down 8%, off a full ratings point (vs. 12.6 last year), but down just 2% in total viewers (vs. 30.5 million last year). This year’s Tuesday debut took a bigger dip compared with last year’s premiere.

This season’s on-par performance for the two-night debut contrasts with last year’s, when the show’s rating and total viewers dropped 9% from night to night.

(Updated: Added link in second graf. 1 p.m.)