‘Empire’ Ratings in the Gutter in Jussie Smollett’s Last Episode of the Season


Ratings for the FOX series Empire continue to bottom out as Jussie Smollett starred in his last episode of the season Wednesday night.

According to Variety, Wednesday’s Empire episode earned only a 1.1 rating.

The episode, in which Smollett’s character Jamal Lyon tied the knot in TV’s first-ever black, gay wedding, returned a 1.1 rating in the key 18-49 demo and 3.8 million total viewers. Those numbers are a tick up on the 1.07 rating of the previous two weeks, but are still down on the season 5 average, which currently sits at around 1.4.

The episode was Smollett’s last confirmed appearance in the season 5 of the Fox drama, after he was removed from the final two episodes following his arrest for allegedly filing a false police report.

The show’s ratings have been low since Jussie Smollett was arrested in February for allegedly faking a racist attack against himself in downtown Chicago. He was initially charged with 16 felony counts. But all criminal charges against him were suddenly dropped in March amid suspicious circumstances.

After the arrest, ratings fell 35 percent in the demo. Following the charges being dropped, Empire‘s ratings hit an all-time low. The week after, they just slightly improved, still near the all-time low number.

Cast members of Empire are sticking by the 36-year-old, calling him “innocent” and “filled with integrity.”


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