The Tonys are the theater buff’s equivalent of Oscars, but they don’t pull in any Academy-worthy ratings. On Sunday, June 10 HBO’s fan favorite True Blood bested CBS’ Tonys broadcast, complete with Neil Patrick Harris dance numbers and all.
While the Tonys raked in 6 million viewers — a number CBS hasn’t encountered often — True Blood nabbed 6.3 million viewers for the highly-anticipated premiere of the supernatural series. It’s not a big margin, but it is worth noting that while CBS’ ratings were reaching lows they never fathomed (even their reruns of Big Bang Theory nab around eight million viewers an episode), HBO was experiencing an uptick in ratings, which have been hovering around the 5.5 million mark for the latter half of True Blood’s fourth season.
And while HBO is likely celebrating, it’s a sad day for Tony. The stunted audience marks a 21-year low for the Broadway awards ceremony, according to TVLine
, despite its wealth of song and dance and the charms of awards show host extraordinaire Harris. It seemed that with TV audiences flocking to more and more theater-based series like Glee
that the Tonys could experience a surge of extra mini-Rachel Berrys and mini-Karen Cartwrights tuning in for their chance to catch a glimpse of this year’s singing heroes. However, the TV trend didn’t translate to a winning night for the awards. But does it spell danger for the broadcast?