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January 19, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

In the end, the biggest “get” of the past year (or longer) didn’t get the massive audience that had been predicted for it. Pt. 1 of Oprah Winfrey’s much-hyped interview with disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong, which aired on Thursday night on OWN, attracted just 3.2 million viewers — far fewer than the 6 million she averaged daily during the last year of her syndicated show. Even her interview last March with Bobbi Kristina Brown, Whitney Houston’s daughter, also on OWN, drew more viewers — 3.5 million. To be sure, the Armstrong interview, which was carried by Winfrey’s hard-to-find cable network, was up against some formidable competition from broadcast TV, namely the season debut of American Idol on Fox, Grey’s Anatomy on ABC, and CBS’s comedy lineup. Even so, the ratings figure failed to live up to expectations. The interview did pull in an additional 1.1 million viewers in a repeat at 10:30, but that figure was less than the 1.59 million who watched The Daily Show on Comedy Central at 11:00 p.m., not to mention the 3.55 million who watched the Lakers-Heat basketball game on TNT at 10:30 p.m. The network did put out a news release noting that the interview drew the most male viewers in its history — a dubious distinction given that its target audience is women 25-54.