Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Scores Highest Audience Tally in 5 Years

Lea Michele - Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Roy Rochlin/NBC

NBC and Peacock gobbled up TV audiences this Thanksgiving. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, which aired live on NBC and was simulcast on Peacock on Thursday, November 22, scored the annual event’s highest tally of total viewers in five years, Nielsen’s figures show.

According to Deadline, which reported the Nielsen data, the parade landed a 7.2 rating in the 18-to-49 demographic and brought in 27.7 million viewers including its digital, streaming, and encore audience. Furthermore, the parade coverage was NBC’s most-watched entertainment program of the year, with 22.3 million viewers, and this year’s highest-rated NBC entertainment program in the 18–49 demo, with a 5.5 rating.

Al Roker had to miss this year’s parade as he recovered from blood clots in his legs and lungs, marking the first time in 27 years that the Today meteorologist wasn’t reporting from the parade’s sidelines.

But there was no shortage of starpower in Herald Square on Thursday morning. Lea Michelle opened the NBC broadcast with the song “Don’t Rain on My Parade,” a song she performed in Glee and is now belting out in the Broadway revival of Funny Girl. And in the parade’s grand finale, Mariah Carey performed her hit “All I Want for Christmas Is You” as Santa Claus arrived at the flagship Macy’s location in Manhattan.

The good news kept coming for NBC as the day went on Thursday: The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon garnered 3.4 million viewers and a 0.9 rating in the demo that night, marking the best stats in both metrics that the late-night show has gotten in three years. And Late Night With Seth Meyers had its most-watched broadcast in three years on Thursday, with 1.7 million viewers and a 0.9 in the demo.