Dave's Return Grabs Great Ratings
February 15, 2000
As expected, David Letterman's return to the Late Show Monday night scored huge ratings for CBS. The late night talk show earned a 9.3 rating and 23 share, capturing 12 million viewers, according to overnight Nielsen figures. That's triple the show's average ratings this season, and double what NBC rival Jay Leno scored.
Letterman's return resulted in the host's highest ratings since he moved from NBC to CBS in August 1993.
The Late Show handily defeated NBC rival The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, which earned a 4.7/11. Despite a rare appearance by attention-grabbing Howard Stern, Leno's ratings were down by about 19 percent, according to Variety.
Letterman's return to late night also gave a boost to CBS leadout The Late Late Show With Craig Kilborn, which posted its highest ratings since the show's premiere March 30. The Letterman hoopla helped Kilborn beat Conan O'Brien over on NBC.
While he recuperates from surgery, Dave will continue to host The Late Show Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, with guest hosts filling in on the other weeknights.