Emmys Viewers Hit New All-Time Low Against NFL Playoffs: Down 27% from 2022

Fox’s Emmys, hosted by “We Are Family” host Anthony Anderson (“Black-ish”), drew 4.3 million viewers on Monday. That number was down 27 percent from the awards show’s last telecast — a Monday night in September 2022 on NBC. It’s a new record low, though as Fox pointed out on Tuesday, it marked the broadcast net’s most-watched Monday unscripted telecast in more than eight years (a June 2015 “So You Think You Can Dance” episode). Quite a few asterisks there, but fair is fair.

The 2022 Emmys averaged 5.9 million total viewers, which at the time set a new record low — awards shows have been trending this way since on-demand streaming (further) fragmented audiences. The 2021 Emmy Awards, which aired on CBS on a Sunday, averaged 7.9 million total viewers. CBS tends to draw the most overall viewers on linear television, a fact the Golden Globes learned last week.

Last night, HBO drama “Succession,” FX comedy “The Bear,” and Netflix limited series “Beef” damn near swept the awards in their respective categories. Find Monday’s full list of winners here, and the previously announced winners from the Creative Arts Emmys here.

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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 15: Niecy Nash-Betts, winner of the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie award for “Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story,” poses in the press room during the 75th Primetime Emmy Awards at Peacock Theater on January 15, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Jenna Ortega

IndieWire TV critic Ben Travers called these 75th Emmys a “low-key charmer.” The show was packed with cast (and set) reunions, including those for “Cheers,” “The Sopranos,” “American Horror Story,” “Saturday Night Live,” “Martin,” “Community,” and “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” Travers gave the telecast a “B” grade.

Awards shows generally do best on a Sunday night, but that is God’s the NFL’s day. NFL Wildcard Weekend was this past weekend; there was also a game on Monday night, directly opposite the Emmys. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers creamed the Philadelphia Eagles 32-9. Monday marked the first time the Emmys were up against the NFL Playoffs.

It was the writers and actors strikes that ultimately pushed these Emmys to Martin Luther King Jr. Day; it is theoretically better to have a telecast on a work/school night that a holiday weekend. Originally, the 75th Emmy Awards were booked for September 18, 2023; the WGA strike ended on September 27, 2023 and the SAG-AFTRA strike concluded on November 9, 2023.

The Golden Globes on CBS preceded the Emmys by eight days. The move from NBC to CBS (and from Monday night back to Sunday night) paid off; the 81st Golden Globe Awards jumped 50 percent in viewers to 9.4 million. The Globes have a not-so-secret weapon: they also honor films, which this year meant both sides of the “Barbenheimer” craze.

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