Last night marked the end of two series, though one more permanent than the other. ABC wrapped up the first season of its second Marvel Cinematic Universe series, Agent Carter. Later, NBC aired the series finale of Parks and Recreation, the network’s last remaining series from its acclaimed Thursday night comedy lineup.
The finale of Parks and Recreation offered an emotional send off (read our review) to the show’s seventh season. NBC aired the shortened final season for six weeks doubling up episodes in an effort to “eventize” Parks And Recreation’s last run. In terms of ratings, it seems the network's strategy may have worked.
TVLine is reporting that the series finale of Parks and Recreation had its highest audience since January 2012 with 4.2 million viewers, a 50 percent increase of week-to-week. The episode also scored a 1.6 demo rating, which is a 33 percent increase of the week-to-week. Comparatively, the sixth season finale of Parks and Recreation only garnered 2.7 million viewers and a 1.0 demo rating.
Given the amount of buzz surrounding the final season of Parks and Recreation, a show beloved by critics and fans alike, the bump in the ratings don’t come as a surprise. Though it’s unclear whether the ratings were a result of (or despite) NBC’s programming schedule, which pushed Parks and Recreation to a different timeslot for the finale. Nevertheless, fans of the series showed their love of Parks and Recreation through the hashtag #ParksFarewell (which was trending on Twitter for most of Tuesday) and tuning in to the series’ final episode.
As for ABC’s Agent Carter, TVLine is reporting the ratings decreased to 4 million viewers with a 1.3 demo rating, which means the finale tied with the show’s series low. However, according to the network, these numbers are an improvement upon ratings garnered during Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s winter hiatus last year by 43 and 25 percent.
Agent Carter initially received critical praise for offering new insight to the MCU and how Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) helped to found S.H.I.E.L.D., but the short series was not without fault. Although the ratings for Agent Carter’s season 1 finale were among its worst, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.also saw a ratings drop after the initial high of the show’s premiere.
However, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. significantly improved its storytelling toward the end of its first season and, in season 2, has become more integral to moving the story of the MCU forward by introducing the Inhumans. If Agent Carter can prove to be similarly indispensable in a second season, perhaps that could justify a renewal, aside from simply boosting the network’s ratings during Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s midseason hiatus.
Parks and Recreation aired on NBC 2009 - 2015.
Stay tuned to Screen Rant for updates on Agent Carter season 2.
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