house series finale ratings TV ratings: 'House' finale rises Monday; decent start for 'American Ninja Warrior' on NBCFast National ratings for Monday, May 21, 2012

The series finale of “House” drew some of its best ratings of the season Monday night, but like the final episode of “Desperate Housewives” the previous week, it didn’t come close to the heights it reached at its peak.

Elsewhere, the final performances on “Dancing With the Stars” drew the night’s biggest overall audience, and “America’s Got Talent” had the best numbers among adults 18-49. “AGT” also helped NBC’s summer series “American Ninja Warrior” get off to an OK start.

ABC finished on top among total viewers in primetime, averaging 10.6 million people and a 7.1 rating/11 share in households. FOX (7.4 million, 4.6/7) edged NBC (7.2 million, 4.1/7) for second place. A night of reruns and specials put CBS (5.7 million, 3.7/6) in fourth. The CW was way back with just over 560,000 viewers and a 0.4/1.

In the adults 18-49 demographic, NBC’s 2.6 rating led a tight pack, with ABC (2.5) and FOX (2.4) right behind. CBS finished fourth with a 1.5, and The CW managed only a 0.2.

]]>8 p.m. ABC: “Dancing With the Stars” (16.45 million viewers, 10.6/17 households)
NBC: “America’s Got Talent” (9.5 million, 5.6/9)
FOX: “House: Swan Song” (6.15 million, 3.8/6)
CBS: “How I Met Your Mother” rerun (4.1 million, 2.7/4)/”2 Broke Girls” rerun (4.65 million, 3.0/5)
The CW: “One Tree Hill” rerun (602,000, 0.4/1) 18-49 leader: “America’s Got Talent” (3.1) 9 p.m. FOX: “House” series finale (8.7 million, 5.4/8)
ABC: “The Bachelorette” (8.4 million, 5.8/9)
CBS: “Two and a Half Men” rerun (7.2 million, 4.5/7)/”Mike & Molly” rerun (6.4 million, 4.1/6)
NBC: “American Ninja Warrior” premiere (6.6 million, 3.7/6)
The CW: “One Tree Hill” rerun (524,000, 0.4/1) 18-49 leader: “House” (2.9) 10 p.m. ABC: “The Bachelorette” (7.1 million, 5.0/8)
CBS: Special – “Clash of the Commercials” (6 million, 3.8/6)
NBC: “American Ninja Warrior” premiere (5.5 million, 3.2/5) 18-49 leader: “The Bachelorette” (2.3)

Ratings information includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are preliminary and subject to change. Source: The Nielsen Company. More ratings at Zap2it: Daily, weekly and cable