Another season of Chicago Fire has come to an end, and the ratings prove that a whole lot of people tuned in to see what was going to happen before another hiatus kicks off. In fact, even though Chicago Fire regularly performs exceptionally well among scripted dramas, the finale won a bigger audience than expected. Here's how the finale fared at 9 p.m. ET on the night of April 15.
The Season 8 finale of Chicago Fire scored a 1.2 rating in the key 18-49 age demographic in live+same day numbers, according to Showbuzz Daily. While the 1.2 is steady with the penultimate episode of Season 8, which aired April 8, it places the Fire finale a full 0.1 above Chicago Med (which is often the One Chicago winner in live+same day calculations) at 8 p.m. ET and Chicago P.D. at 10 p.m. ET.
As if the impressive 1.2 isn't enough, the size of the audience is all but jaw-dropping. With its Season 8 finale (which was not originally planned as the season finale), Chicago Fire attracted an audience of more than 9.3 million. This places Fire on top of Med's 9.2 million and Fire's 7.9 million. In fact, Chicago Fire was the most-watched broadcast of the night.
The only broadcast on the night of April 15 that managed to interrupt the One Chicago viewership hot streak was CBS' Survivor episode, which attracted an audience of 8 million. The only losses for Chicago Fire on the night of its Season 8 finale were in overall ratings, as The Masked Singer won a 1.7 (despite angering viewers) and Survivor scored a 1.5.
Still, Chicago Fire easily won its slot at 9 p.m. ET in audience size and tied Fox's LEGO Masters in the ratings with the 1.2. On the whole, Fire definitely did better than expected, although there are some variables worth considering, especially as to why it beat Med.
Chicago Med faced the biggest non-Chicago competition of the night in the 8 p.m. slot with Survivor and The Masked Singer, and even then was only just below Fire in both ratings and viewership. With social distancing in place, TV ratings in general have also gotten some big boosts.
Still, the ratings consistency across One Chicago, led by Chicago Fire with the finales on April 15, is pretty remarkable. Unfortunately, all those viewers who tuned in to watch the Chicago Fire Season 8 finale live won't be watching the Season 9 finale any time too soon. The One Chicago series typically premiere new seasons in September and wrap in May. With no sign of when productions will be able to begin again, it's possible the wait will be longer than until September.
That said, a lot can happen between mid-April and the fall, so fans can just cross their fingers for good news coming sooner rather than later. As of now, the most concrete news about what's in store next for Chicago Fire (other than the whopping three-season renewal) is that one of the show's EMTs won't be back in Season 9.
For some viewing options between now and whenever Chicago Fire returns for its ninth season, be sure to check out our 2020 spring premiere schedule.