More people watch the Top 2 than watch the Top 3. The average Top 2 performance episode (Seasons 1-9) got a higher Nielsen rating than the Top 3 by an average of 0.83 in the 18-49 demographic. It has never gone down.
Until this year.
This is the first evidence I’ve seen that the voting system in Idol might be having problems. The public was liking this season better than last year’s contest. The Top 3 was markedly better than last year, but last night many fewer people watched.
Huge caveat: the episode last night was moved to Tuesday from its normal slot on Wednesday to get the Finale into the May sweeps schedule. So, it’s possible Dancing With The Stars took some votes away here.
Nevertheless, it’s hard not to see that the voters voted in a Top 2 that fewer people went out of their way to watch.
PS: The drop in Season 7 after the Top 5 was when Brooke White was eliminated. What’s up with that???