Jimmy Fallon Decidedly Not a Ratings Embarrassment

Awkward or not, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon's fairly decent premiere last night got solid ratings, beating his rival Craig Ferguson. He also improved on Conan's average, though that won't last long.

Fallon's scored a 2.3 rating which is an improvement, for now, on Conan's 1.7 average—we imagine that people will be less endeared to Fallon than they were to Conan, and will stop coming back once the new car smell disappears and the early slate of big guests has been cleared.

As far as his competition goes, Jimmy Kimmel, who starts a half hour earlier on ABC, drew a 2.5 rating with a synergistic stunt booking of the Bachelor on the same night as that show's finale. But over on CBS, Paris Hilton was no draw for Ferguson, scoring 35% fewer viewers than Fallon.

But still, good on the new late-night kid. He didn't flop or embarrass himself. Maybe once he gets his obvious nerves under control, the show can settle into a comfortable pace and work on slowly building a cultish audience.

[THR]