scorecardresearch
TV Critic’s Corner

After decades-long climb, ‘Late Show’ rules late night

“Jimmy Kimmel Live!” is No. 3 late-night show. “The Late Show,” with host Stephen Colbert (top), is No. 1.
“Jimmy Kimmel Live!” is No. 3 late-night show. “The Late Show,” with host Stephen Colbert (top), is No. 1.(Richard Boeth/CBS via AP/file)

For the first time in more than 20 years, CBS’s “The Late Show” is the No. 1 show in late night. Stephen Colbert’s series has been winning significantly in total viewers for a few seasons, but now he’s also ahead in the all-important 18-49 demographic.

Looks like his focus on President Trump has been paying off.

The 2018-19 season officially ends this week, and Colbert has pulled ahead in the demo by a tiny but critical number — about a hundredth of a ratings point. “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” is third in the demo.

The last time “The Late Show” won the demo, which was in 1995, David Letterman was finishing up his second year at CBS.

Advertisement




Matthew Gilbert can be reached at gilbert@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.