You’d think the entertainment industry would have figured it out by now. Americans do not like their jesters having political opinions. We pay you to entertain us, to dance, to sing, to joke, to play a sport.
We do not pay you to tell the peasants how to live from your ivory towers, and the ratings are showing.
Jimmy Kimmel’s return as Oscars host received an 18.9 rating in Nielsen’s overnight numbers from 8-11 p.m. ET, down 15.6 percent from his 2017 debut. Of course, the ABC special ran about 50 minutes after primetime’s cutoff, so these numbers are subject to some adjustment.
Last year’s Oscars landed a 22.4 rating in Nielsen’s overnight numbers, which count 56 metered markets. That was down 4.3 percent from 2016’s very preliminary numbers, when Chris Rock hosted.
Rock’s turn had already dipped 8 percent from its own predecessor.
The 2017 Oscars eventually tabulated 32.9 million total viewers, which was down 4 percent from the Rock-hosted ceremony. Last night’s overall audience tally should be in by noon PT today.
The Oscars is the preeminent awards telecast that is historically the most-watched entertainment program of the year is no longer an automatic default choice for viewers. The Grammy Awards and the Super Bowl both experienced ratings declines this year. Both have also seen a dramatic uprise in leftist activism, racism, protests over fiction, inaction against actual issues, and general hypocrisy in the entertainment industry has turned once ardent fans away.
The Oscars’ television audience also has been dropping in recent years as voting members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences have tended to celebrate smaller movies. The 2018 winner for best picture, “The Shape of Water,” has earned $57.4 million at the box office in the U.S. and Canada, making it the highest-grossing honoree in the category since “Argo” in 2013.
Viewers may have also become weary of this year’s awards-show speechifying about the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements exposing and combating sexual harassment in the entertainment industry. In a particularly insider-y moment, lead actress winner Frances McDormand finished an otherwise emotional tribute to the other female nominees with the term “inclusion rider,” referring to a contractual clause that requires a specific level of diversity in the cast and crew of a project.
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk