Most-Watched TV Programs, Total Viewers
Game Total Viewers
Super Bowl XLIII (Cardinals-Steelers), 2/1/09 151.6 million
Super Bowl XLII (Giants-Patriots), 2/3/08 148.3 million
Super Bowl XXXVIII (Patriots-Panthers), 2/1/04 144.4 million
Super Bowl XL (Steelers-Seahawks), 2/5/06 141.4 million
Super Bowl XLI (Colts-Chicago), 2/4/07 139.8 million
Source: NFL, Nielsen Media Research
Additional Super Bowl XLIII TV Notes of interest…
The record 98.7 million average viewers for Super Bowl XLIII exceeded the combined total of the 2008 American Idol season premiere (33.5 million), 2008 Academy Awards (32.0 million viewers), and the Nov. 2008 Dancing with the Stars finale (20.7 million) – 86.2 million
- An average of 105 million people were watching when Steelers LB James Harrison returned an interception a Super Bowl-record 100 yards for a touchdown at the end of the first half.
- An average of 106.2 million people were watching when Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald broke free for a 64-yard touchdown in fourth quarter
- An average of 111.6 million people were watching when Steelers WR Santonio Holmes made the game-winning TD catch in fourth quarter
Super Bowl XLIII Had Most Female Viewers for Any Show in 15 Years
Super Bowl XLIII was watched by an average of 38.3 million women – the most since 38.6 million women watched the 1994 Winter Olympic figure skating competition featuring Nancy Kerrigan on Feb. 25, 1994.
The 38.3 million women watching Super Bowl XLIII also represents the third-largest female viewership since Nielsen Media Research began tracking the demographic in Sept. 1991. The top two shows among women: two nights of 1994 Winter Olympic figure skating featuring Nancy Kerrigan (40.9 million on Feb. 23, 1994; 38.6 million on Feb. 25, 1994).