NBC gave Timeless a beautiful ending (or a new beginning?) last night. So how many Clockblockers tuned in for "The Miracle of Christmas"?
According to early numbers from TVLine, the December 20 Timeless two-hour finale special had 3.22 million viewers and a 0.6 rating in the advertiser-loving 18-49 demographic. That made it the largest overall audience since the Season 1 finale -- which had 3.37 million viewers (and a 0.9 rating). It was also on par with the Season 2 average rating of 0.6, while exceeding the overall Season 2 average of 2.5 million viewers.
The Timeless Season 2 finale in May posted 2.43 million viewers and a 0.6 rating in the 18-49 demo, according to TV by the Numbers. So this wrap-up finale had more viewers, but the same numbers in the demo. That doesn't really bode well for a surprise last-second Season 3 revival from NBC, but some outlet out there may still want to pick up this passionate fan base. Streamers aren't really bound to the Nielsen 18-49 gods like network TV.
When it comes to NBC and other such networks, they're looking for numbers more like what This Is Us is still posting for NBC, despite being down in Season 3. Or what Manifest has been doing in its first season; that show had a record-breaking start for NBC, and Season 1 still averages about 6-7 million every Monday at 10 p.m., with ratings above 1.1. There's tough competition out there.
Timeless aired its pilot after The Voice back on Monday, October 3, 2016, picking up 7.60 million viewers and a rating of 1.8. But the numbers dropped steadily from there, and Timeless was cancelled after Season 1. Just days after NBC cancelled the show the first time, fan outcry brought it back for Season 2. But that trick only worked one time.
NBC moved Timeless from Mondays to Sundays at 10 p.m. for Season 2, which aired 10 episodes from March to May 2018. NBC cancelled Timeless again after Season 2, albeit offering a Christmas special wrap-up to give closure after the big Season 2 finale cliffhanger.
The Christmas special -- which aired 8-10 p.m. ET on Thursday, a third night for Timeless -- definitely had an open ending. That ending left fans hopeful that maybe the show could live on via another outlet. There's more story to tell. It's clear NBC is ready to move on, but so many cancelled shows have found new lives on Hulu, Amazon, Netflix, or even other networks. Why not Timeless? We'll see.
For now, fans can continue to support Timeless by spreading the word to others to watch the finale -- get those DVR numbers up, since it can't hurt. And Clockblockers can rewatch the finale themselves to let that haunting cover of "Time After Time" wash all the feels over them. If Timeless does end on that note for The Time Team, at least it was a good one.
Gina grew up in Massachusetts and California in her own version of The Parent Trap. She went to three different middle schools, four high schools, and three universities -- including half a year in Perth, Western Australia. She currently lives in a small town in Maine, the kind Stephen King regularly sets terrible things in, so this may be the last you hear from her.
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