After a week of fever-pitch media coverage in anticipation of Megyn Kelly’s interview with controversial conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, her episode debuted Sunday night with a ratings flop.
The network was likely hoping that the controversy surrounding Kelly’s choice to interview Jones would deliver big ratings, but they’re hopes were dashed as the ratings came out Monday: the episode brought in an average of 3.5 million viewers.
As CNN notes, that’s “the fewest viewers that Kelly’s weekly news magazine telecast, Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly, has drawn since its debut three weeks ago.”
Kelly’s episode was walloped in the ratings race by a re-run of 60 Minutes, which netted 5.3 million viewers, and trounced in the prized 18-49 demo by a re-run of America’s Funniest Home Videos, per CNN.
The decision to interview Jones was met with criticism from those arguing a mainstream outlet like NBC should not give a platform to a dangerous conspiracy theorist — but Kelly’s tough questioning of Jones and some selective editing drew plaudits from skeptics who assumed Kelly would grant the Infowars host a puff piece.
Jones, for his part, live streamed a response to the interview — watched at its peak by nearly 20,000 people on YouTube — slamming the episode as “fake news.”
Since the debut of Kelly’s show, in which she interviewed Russian President Vladimir Putin drew an average of 6.1 million viewers, her ratings have steadily declined.
[image via screengrab]