NBC’s odd scheduling for the Olympics closing ceremony Sunday night (Aug. 13) drew one last barrage of angry tweets, but it also gave new comedy “Animal Practice” a pretty good platform to be seen by viewers.
The commercial-free preview, which started at 10:58 p.m. ET, drew 12.8 million viewers and a 4.1 rating among adults 18-49. Those are pretty good numbers, but not as strong as the 16.1 million viewers and 5.6 demo rating for a similar sneak peek of “Go On” last week.
NBC notes, however, that “Animal Practice” had similar retention rate to the “Go On” preview: 49 percent of the 18-49 audience in the half-hour prior to the preview stuck around Sunday vs. 54 percent for “Go On.”
How NBC scheduled the night, though, left a lot of people scratching their heads. After a 90-minute special called “London Gold” that started at 7 p.m. ET, the network showed an abbreviated version of the closing ceremony before breaking for “Animal Practice” and local newscasts. More coverage of the closing ceremony — or “closing party,” as NBC renamed it — aired at midnight.
As with “Go On,” the “Animal Practice” preview won’t be part of the official Nielsen ratings because it aired without ads. The show’s official premiere is set for Wednesday, Sept. 26.