Super Bowl XLVIII was most watched TV show in US history

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DENVER — Sunday’s Super Bowl game between the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks was the most watched program in U.S. history.

According to the company which measures TV viewership, Nielsen, the game drew a record 111.5 million viewers.

The game was a dream matchup of the NFL’s top-rated offense (Broncos) and its highest-rated defense (Seawhawks), and held in the nation’s largest market for the first time.

It’s likely the viewership would have been larger had the Seahawks not jumped out to a 22-0 lead by halftime, analysts said.  The Seahawks went on to win 43-8.

Still the impressive viewership demonstrates the influence of the NFL and the interest in the game’s humorous advertising.

Super Bowl games have held record viewership for six of the last seven years. The previous record holders for most-watched events in U.S. TV history were 2012′s Super Bowl, seen by 111.3 million, and the 2010 game, with 111 million viewers.

Locally some 809,000 homes turned to the game, according to data released by Nielsen. The telecast scored a 51.4 rating with an 83 share — meaning 83 percent of the television audience was watching the game.

Audiences stayed with FOX31 Denver for 90 minutes of coverage after the game with reporters inside the stadium, in locker rooms and anchors Deborah Takahara and Jeremy Hubbard outside MetLife stadium.

The post-game viewership was larger than that on the Official Broncos station, 9News.

Interestingly, the most-watched non-sports program Sunday night was “Downtown Abbey” on PBS, which drew in 6.8 million viewers in the 7 p.m. hour.

According to Twitter, more than 24.9 million Tweets were made during the live telecast of the game. On Facebook, more than 50 million people had more than 185 million interactions (posts, comments and likes) related to the Super Bowl.

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