'American Idol' finale draws record low ratings

Audience numbers reflect show's declining popularity

5/17/2013
ASSOCIATED PRESS
APTOPIX-2013-American-Idol-Finale-Show

Host Ryan Seacrest, left, and finalists Candice Glover, center, and Kree Harrison speak on stage at the 'American Idol' finale Thursday night.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Host Ryan Seacrest, left, and finalists Candice Glover, center, and Kree Harrison speak on stage at the 'American Idol' finale Thursday night.
Host Ryan Seacrest, left, and finalists Candice Glover, center, and Kree Harrison speak on stage at the 'American Idol' finale Thursday night.

NEW YORK  — Ratings for the “American Idol” finale plunged to a record low for the 12-year-old show.

According to preliminary Nielsen Co. figures Friday, Candice Glover’s victory over Kree Harrison was watched by 14.2 million viewers. That’s a 34 percent drop from the year before, when nearly 22 million viewers saw Phillip Phillips claim the “Idol” crown. That represented the show’s previous record low finale audience.

Among advertiser-coveted young adults, “American Idol” saw an even steeper 42 percent drop for Thursday’s finale.

The lack of interest in the winner of this year’s contest parallels the show’s declining ratings for the season. Fox is scrambling to revive the singing contest that once dominated TV, revamping the judges’ panel and making yet-to-be detailed format changes.

Original judge Randy Jackson has already announced his exit.