May 24, 2024

The Season 32 premiere of “Dancing With the Stars” opened to high scores on Tuesday night, earning a demo win for ABC on the night as it pushed past the competition.

According to Live+Same Day national viewership data from Nielsen, the episode recorded a .64 rating among the key adults 18-49 demographic — placing it ahead of NBC’s combo of “The Voice” Tuesday night premiere (.60) and the “America’s Got Talent” season finale (.55). The episode was simulcast on ABC and Disney+ and became available for next day streaming on Hulu on Wednesday.

While it’s not an exact comparison, the Season 30 opener — the last time “DWTS” aired on ABC, in 2021 — scored a significantly higher rating in the demo, pulling a .9 rating and reaching an audience of 5.48 million viewers. But a lot has changed since then: Disney spent a year conditioning fans of the series to watch “DWTS” on Disney+, instead of ABC, so many of those viewers perhaps stuck with the streamer. In other words, we won’t know until next week the fuller picture of how many people watched the “DWTS” premiere, until the multiplatform data is out. But for ABC alone, it was a solid number.

“Dancing with the Stars” did particularly well with women 25-54, averaging a 1.1 rating in that demo. In total viewers, “DWTS” averaged 4.8 million viewers, while “The Voice” won the night with 6.5 million, followed by “AGT” with 5.5 million.

After a bit of a controversial start (as WGA members picketed the show, which employs Writers Guild scribes), ABC kicked off the season — the show’s first since the death of judge Len Goodman — with a new crop of stars including Ariana Madix, Mauricio Umansky, and Charity Lawson, among others. Celebrities as always competed for a chance at what has now been dubbed the Len Goodman Mirrorball Trophy.

Lawson and her partner, Artem Chigvintsev, finished the night at the top of the scoreboard with 22 points as the first and only pair from the night to earn an 8. Jason Mraz and Danielle Karagh, along with Ariana Madix and partner Pasha Pashkov tied for second place with a score of 21. Umansky ended at the bottom of the list, but in the end, Matt Walsh, who was partnered with Koko Iwasaki, was eliminated from the competition.

Elsewhere on the evening, in the 18-49 demo CBS averaged a .18 rating for the night with encore episodes of “FBI” (.22), “FBI: International” (.18) and “FBI: Most Wanted” (.14), just barely etching ahead of Fox, which averaged a .16 rating for the night. The CW earned a .06 rating in the demo with a new episode of “Inside the NFL,” which recorded a .06 rating, and “Swarm,” which earned a rating of .05.

In total viewers, NBC won the night with 5.9 million, followed by ABC (4.4 million), CBS (2.6 million), Fox (878,000) and The CW (343,000).

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