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Fallon's 'Tonight' debut draws 11.3 million viewers

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Jimmy Fallon's start as host of "The Tonight Show" is a ratings winner for NBC.

Nielsen company figures released Tuesday show 11.3 million people tuned in to watch Fallon's New York debut on Monday night.

It was the second-biggest audience for "Tonight" since May 2009, when Jay Leno stepped down for Conan O'Brien's brief run as host.

Fallon's "Tonight" debut fell short of the 14.6 million who tuned in Feb. 6 to see Leno sign off, again, after 22 years as host in Burbank.

Enjoying a post-Winter Olympics time slot, Fallon drew 2 million-plus viewers more than O'Brien's June 2009 "Tonight" opening audience of nearly 9.2 million.

NBC says Fallon's "Tonight" debut, with guests Will Smith and U2, was up 71 percent over his Feb. 6 "Late Night" farewell's audience of 6.6 million.

TV Guide Weighs In On Jimmy Fallon's 'Tonight Show' Debut

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JKM February 18 2014 at 4:09 PM

I will switch to Conan.

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resqadog February 18 2014 at 4:10 PM

Don't particularly like him on the Tonight Show; he's immature and silly and would be a better fit for SNL than the Tonight Show. Miss Jay Leno. . .

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ellih01 February 18 2014 at 4:10 PM

I think Jimmy is Funny, entertaining and he appeals to all ages. It reminds me of what I would like to be like if I was young again. By the way, I think he is handsome and cute too.

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1 reply
morelliklm18 ellih01 February 18 2014 at 4:19 PM

He doesn't appeal to sane people

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ewelike February 18 2014 at 4:11 PM

It tells how many people tuned in with an open mind. I turned it off after 15 minutes. I will probably give him another shot, because I have been watching Tonight Show since Steve Allen days. I would be unhappy to have to find another source of late night entertainment.

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skitzlpk February 18 2014 at 4:11 PM

Many who commented today on Fallon's debut said it was doubtful they'd be watching anymore. I'm thinking the curiosity factor bumped the ratings. Give it two months & they'll be wishing Leno was back..

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whats up Maxwell February 18 2014 at 4:12 PM

Watched the show and turned it off after 30 minutes. Too much talking about himself and his crew. Not enough show.

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spongeworthy06 February 18 2014 at 4:12 PM

Only NBC would replace the number one guy in that time slot.

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1 reply
Dean spongeworthy06 February 18 2014 at 4:15 PM

That is true.However ,Jimmy Fallon is very funny.

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MASTER February 18 2014 at 4:12 PM

Well, he's no Arsenio Hall, that's for sure.

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1 reply
preedsr MASTER February 18 2014 at 4:17 PM

Yea Arsenio is terrible

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Clay February 18 2014 at 4:13 PM

He need to make changes want last

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tmbaranic February 18 2014 at 4:14 PM

NBC will sacrifice a significant portion of over 50 viewers, in order to attract a younger audience. Fallon's ratings will shrink as time passes. Conan & Fallon on Late Night is fine, but the Tonight time slot is a whole different ballgame.

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