TV ratings: ‘Scandal’s’ Season 3 ends strong


The third season finale of ABC’s Beltway drama “Scandal” was high in emotion and ratings.

According to early numbers from Nielsen, Thursday’s season closer drew 10.5 million viewers overall and a rating of 3.4 among key 18-to-49-year-olds, marking the series’ highest rated finale yet and its second highest rated episode ever.

The series high was the Season 3 premiere, in which the show returned from a major cliffhanger.


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Compared with the Season 2 finale, Thursday night’s episode was up 15% in total viewership and 6% in 18-49.

ABC won the night in the 18-49 demo, notching an average of 2.2 -- where a ratings point equals roughly 1.3 million viewers -- driven by “Scandal,” which posted Thursday’s best 18-49 rating.

CBS was all reruns except for a double dose of Robin Williams’ “The Crazy Ones” to end its season. A special 9 p.m. episode drew a 1.6 in 18-49, while the 9:30 p.m. finale scored a modest 1.3.

Fox generated weekly gains with “Hell’s Kitchen” and “American Idol.” The Gordon Ramsay cooking show rose 21% to a 1.7 in 18-49 this week, whereas the veteran sing-off competition improved 12% to a 1.9. However, the new comedy “Surviving Jack” sunk to a low 1.0 whereas its total viewership held generally steady.

NBC’s “Parenthood” rose week-to-week in its season finale by 18% to a 1.3. “Community” recovered a bit from last week’s low to a 1.0 with its season finale, though it was down from last season’s closer. “Parks & Recreation” fell to a series low of 0.9.


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Twitter: @rfaughnder