Predict the ratings for Lost's Finale

Let’s not make this a hate fest on Lost. No matter what you think, the ratings will be pretty big. I mean, a lot of people will be checking in on it just to see what is going on and how it’s going to end.

So, how big do you think the ratings will be for it?

Let’s see.

  1. It’s on Sunday, which is different.

  2. However, it’s against the Celebrity Apprentice finale, which I guess will pull slightly from it.

  3. It’s 2 1/2 hours long, which is a lot to ask for people who aren’t fans of it.

I’m going with an average rating of: 28 million

Big, but not gigantic.

I’m going to predict that the ratings aren’t that much higher than they’ve been all season. Most shows have a bigger than usual series finale because most viewers are fairly casual and don’t catch every episode unless it’s a big event, and people who haven’t watched the show in a few years want to see how it ends. But Lost isn’t really suited for casual viewers and most of the people who lost interest aren’t going to be up for seeing how it ends.

15 million viewers and American Idol still beats it.

I agree with 2ply. Anyone wanting to become a fan of Lost after-the-fact is going to avoid the finale like the plague and wait to buy it whole on DVD. I can’t think of anyone I know who would watch the finale that doesn’t currently watch it every week.

Heck, I download 100% of all the other shows I watch, but I actually tune in every week on a real television to watch Lost.

Whatever the usual weekly count is is what it will be Sunday…except maybe a small percentage of people who might usually watch it online the next day who will be able to catch it Sunday.

Hope you realize that Lost series finale is set to be on SUNDAY not a regular Tuesday.

I predict 35million American viewers will watch it during its Sunday timeslot and a zillion more will download it and watch it illegally a day after.

I think a lot of people who haven’t kept up with it will start watching, then get so confused they won’t stay till the end. And yes, 2-1/2 hours is a lot to sit through, except for the die-hard fans.

Tivo is my friend. :slight_smile:

I meant to say that American Idol will still be the #1 show that week. But even on Tuesday, Glee has still been edging out Lost at 9pm.

The season premiere this year had 12.1 million viewers. Tuesday’s episode was down to 10.4 million. Lost is not on opposite American Idol. It’s an hour later, where it ranks third to NCIS and Glee. The highest rated show last Sunday was the Survivor finale, which peaked at 13.6 million. That’s about double what any of the Fox shows managed. That is a slight advantage in that it’s easier to pull in viewers from non-television watching activities rather than make them switch away from popular shows.

Even the 15 million 2ply suggested is a full 50% higher than last week’s show. I think some additional fans will use curiosity nudged by the heavy promotion to get them in front of their sets. But 50% more is unlikely. I say it will match the Survivor finale numbers. That’s a nice 31% jump over last week. Obviously I would be stunned if it hit numbers like the 28 million and 35 million thrown around here. The highest it ever got was for Man of Science, Man Of Faith" (season two) which brought in 23.47 million. There is simply not a chance those numbers will be seen on Sunday. 13 million people who walked away suddenly return for a show they couldn’t make possibly make sense of after a weird pull stuff out of their ass season just to see the finale? I don’t buy it.

A decent bump, yes. More than the religious faithful who felt they had to watch every show. But not the return of every bored dropout and every one they alienated. 13.6 million. And since I’m pretty sure that the viewership I’m quoting did not include those who recorded the show or watched it on computers, the final tally will be higher, just as the previous number would be higher if those were included. The percentages would be about the same, though.

I don’t know numbers, but I will say top ten all-time.

Excluding sporting events and the Oscars?

Maybe, but I doubt it. Of the last 5 years? Probably.

I would guess this is the biggest finale since Friends, right? It aired in 2004 and pulled 50+ million viewers. I’ve basically cut that in half for Lost.

I’m including TIVO in my guess, by the way.

I think it’ll be higher than the usual weekly average, just because people who’ve lost interest over the years may want to check it out, at least until they get lost and can’t follow it because so much has changed since they lost track of it. I don’t think they’ll set any ratings records or anything. If they’ve been doing 10-12 million, I think 15-20 million is a good guess.

I’m just glad Fox didn’t move the 24 finale to Sunday.


I’m guessing 90% of its highest audience using the logic that most people who gave up on it will tune in to the finale just to see the big mysteries explained.

Sweet, thanks for the legwork.

Looks like I predict 21.1 million.

I’m going to make a bold prediction and say 25 mil. I’m basing this number on the theory that a lot of the Lost fans who watch the show online or illegally will tune in live for the finale.

I’m still trying to find out what ABC is predicting. They sold the ads for this episode special, so they had to justify it to the sponsors somehow. They price their ads based on expected viewers, so I’m not sure what they predicted.

Nailed it.

Good job, Exapno.

I guess I thought it was going to attract way more casual viewers than it did. Wayyyy more.


So how did the network manage to convince sponsors to pay such a huge premium for ad space?

I guess they did not charge the most that has been charged.

It was $900,000 for a 30 second commercial.

The really amazing number is the 9.8 million for the first hour. That’s 600,000 less than the previous week. I have to assume that represents an enormous amount of alienation. The final 90 minutes rose less than 40% from that low.

I wonder if the ad buyers got an audience guarantee and a rebate for low ratings. That’s normal for regular season shows, but it doesn’t always happen for special buys. If not, then they wildly overpaid. The costs for shows with comparable ratings are less than half this.

More figures are coming in. Unfortunately, they confuse the picture.

TVbythenumbers says:

So which is the right number? Average viewership of 13.5 million? Peak viewers of 15.31 million? Or anybody who tuned in at all at 20.5 million?

In the data I dug up for my comparisons, the numbers appear to be average viewers. I certainly tried to base my estimate on those, so they would be like to like.

Anybody who wants to argue for a higher number now has some ammunition, though.