Jimmy Fallon's ratings are slipping, and the New York Times has suggested that it's because the late-night host does not sharply criticize President Donald Trump.
What did the Times say?
The Times reported Tuesday that the ratings for "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" are down 21 percent year-over-year since the debut of the 2017 fall season in September.
"Ten months after Inauguration Day, the trend is holding: For late-night hosts, being sharply critical of President Trump is a winning strategy," Times writer John Koblin wrote, basing his findings on recent November sweeps in the Nielsen ratings. "And that is bad news for 'The Tonight Show.'"
According to the report, "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert," whose namesake host has targeted Trump nightly over the last year — often in obscene, expletive-laden rants — assumed the top ratings position in February, and his show's trajectory has continued on an upward climb ever since.
The fall 2016 season saw Fallon's total viewer numbers at 3.3 million, while Colbert sat at around 2.9 million.
For the fall 2017 season, Fallon's total viewer numbers are holding at 2.6 million, while Colbert has shot ahead to 3.5 million.
The Times reported that NBC executives have emphasized that Fallon still leads in the coveted 18-49 demographic — but according to year-over-year ratings, by just an increasingly small margin.
The fall 2016 season saw Fallon's 18-49 demographic viewers at 1.1 million, while Colbert trailed around 754,000.
For the fall 2017 season, Fallon's 18-49 demographic dipped year-over-year to 836,000, while Colbert's ratings declined on a smaller scale year-over-year to 746,000.