Share story

NEW YORK (AP) — The CBS drama “The Good Wife” is on pace to record its biggest audience in more than a year with a series finale that had more than a few of its loyal fans talking.

The Nielsen company said an estimated 10.6 million people watched Sunday’s finale. That is the show’s biggest audience on the night of its original airing since November 2014.

That finale left inconclusive the question of whether Alicia Florrick, played by series star Julianna Margulies, would divorce her pol husband and run off with her current lover. It also ended with a resounding slap, applied to Florrick by her law partner for exposing the affair of that woman’s husband in a court of law.

For a series widely regarded as broadcast television’s best drama, it was an ending that left many fans talking about their dissatisfaction online.

CBS said the show has been averaging 10.6 million viewers an episode this season, a number that includes an average of about 2.5 million people who watch on demand or on DVR up to a week after it is first show. By those averages, the finale’s viewership can expect to eventually exceed 13 million people.

It was a strong night for CBS, with about 10 million people also watching the title character of “Madam Secretary” receive an intriguing offer.

CBS easily won the week in prime time, averaging 7.9 million viewers. NBC had 5.5 million, ABC had 5.4 million, Fox had 2.7 million, Univision had 1.7 million, the CW had 1.5 million, Telemundo had 1.3 million and ION Television had 1.1 million.

TNT was the week’s most popular cable network, averaging 2.62 million viewers. Fox News Channel had 2.25 million, ESPN had 1.6 million, USA had 1.53 million and HGTV had 1.42 million.

NBC’s “Nightly News” topped the evening newscasts with an average of 8 million viewers. ABC’s “World News” was second with 7.9 million and the “CBS Evening News” had 6.7 million viewers.

For the week of May 2-8, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: “NCIS,” CBS, 14.86 million; “The Big Bang Theory,” CBS, 13.22 million; “NCIS: New Orleans,” CBS, 12.56 million; “Dancing With the Stars,” ABC, 11.81 million; “The Good Wife,” CBS, 10.62 million; “Blue Bloods,” CBS, 10.1 million; “Madam Secretary,” CBS, 9.99 million; “The Voice” (Monday), NBC, 9.97 million; “Survivor,” CBS, 9.49 million; “Empire,” Fox, 9.39 million.


ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox is owned by 21st Century Fox. NBC and Telemundo are owned by Comcast Corp. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks.