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‘Empire’ Ratings Rise, NBA Playoffs Score, ‘Criminal Minds’ Finale Down From 2016

Deadline logo Deadline 5/11/2017 Dominic Patten
© Provided by Deadline

Facing Game 5 of the Boston Celtics vs. Washington Wizards NBA Playoffs semifinals on TNT, the title of last night’s Empire (2.1/8) was “Absent Child.” However, with brotherly love and the intrigue you expect from the hip hop hit drama, what was not absent on Wednesday was ratings.

After hitting a series low and dipping below 2.0 for the first time ever while facing a NBA double header last week, the Ilene Chaiken run Empire bounced back last night with a 17% rise among adults 18-49 from the fast affiliate results of its May 3 show, which went up a tenth in the finals. All of which puts Empire back as the highest rated show of the night and, with 8 PM’s Shots Fired (0.8/9) even with last week, puts Fox back on top alone as the highest rated net of the night with a 1.5/6 to CBS’ 1.4/5.

On a night that saw Survivor (1.7/7) and Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders (0.8/3) both down a tenth in the key demo, the House of Moonves was tops in total viewership with an audience of 7 million to Fox’s fourth place 4.68 million.

Even with the return of Shemar Moore on last night’s Criminal Minds (1.5/6) Season 12 finale, the procedural remained the same as the final numbers of last week’s show. However, that May 3 show was adjusted up a tenth from its fast affiliates, as was Empire, so there might be traction to be had later in the day. Right now, Criminal Minds’ Season 12 ender is down 17% from its Season 11 finale of May 4 last year.

Further up the dial, TNT scored a 3.0 in metered market results for that Celtics 123-101 win over the Wizard to now lead their conference semifinals 3-2. Up 15% from the comparable first game of May 3, last night’s Celtics victory was also another win for TNT, who won the night on cable.

As it is that time of year, there was another finale on the Big 4 with Black-ish (1.3/4) ending its third season. With a medical emergency and tears of joy, the Kenya Barris created series was up a tenth from last week but down 13% in the demo from its Season 2 finale of May 18, 2016. At 10 PM, POTUS drama Designated Survivor (1.0/4) was also up a tenth from last week, as were NBC’s not yet renewed Law & Order: SVU (1.1/4) and the CW’s Arrow (0.6/2) with less NBA pressure.

Yet, the rest of ABC’s comedies may have felt the heat from that Celtics/Wizards game or something with The Goldbergs (1.3/6), Speechless (1.0/4) and Modern Family (1.5/6) all stumbling two tenth from last week to series lows. Looking for a silver lining, ABC notes that Modern Family has been seeing some hefty Live + 3 lifts against the NBA Playoffs and even matching Empire in the metric with a 1.1 ratings point raise.

The Comcast-owned net’s now renewed Blindspot (0.8/3) was down 11% from its May 3 airing but NBC’s 10 PM offering of Chicago P.D. (1.2/5) was the same, as was the CW’s The 100 (0.3/1) with its final numbers.

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