Ratings: Idol Finale Hits Lowest Rating Ever


American Idol's Season 9 finale delivered its weakest numbers ever for a season-ending show -- though it was still strong enough to lead Fox to a Wednesday night ratings win.


The finale, which saw Lee DeWyze defeat Crystal Bowersox for the title and marked Simon Cowell's last night as a judge on the show, drew 24.2 million viewers. The viewership was down 16 percent from a year ago (28.9 million viewers) and was the second-lowest ever behind the debut season's 22.8 million viewers.


Idol's 18-to-49 rating declined 18 percent from last year and was the lowest ever for a season finale.


As the only other network to broadcast new original episodes, CBS took second place for the night. The Criminal Minds and CSI: NY season finales drew 12.8 million viewers and 11.9 million viewers, respectively.


An airing of Transformers on ABC averaged 4.8 million viewers, making the network No. 3 for the night. NBC took fourth place with two hours of Minute to Win It repeats (averaging 3 million viewers) and a Law & Order: SVU repeat (3.9 million viewers).


A two-hour America's Next Top Model repeat averaged 1.4 million viewers for the CW.


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