CNN Faces Embarrassment As Network Sees Smallest Audience in Years

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CNN engaged celebrities and singers to bring relevancy to the faltering network for a strongly hyped Sunday night special, which ended up being the network’s second-lowest-rated Sunday primetime schedule from 8-11 p.m. since the year 1997

The 15th annual “CNN Heroes: All-Star Tribute,” presented by Anderson Cooper and Kelly Ripa, drew just 422,000 viewers overall, with an alarmingly low 42,000 in the advertiser-coveted 25-54 demographic.

From 8 to 10 p.m., “CNN Heroes” aired. ET, with a 10 p.m. repeat. till 12 a.m.

Despite appearances by “Law and Order” star Christopher Meloni, “Wonder Woman” actress Lynda Carter, “West Side Story” actress Rachel Zegler, musician Josh Groban, “Claws” star Niecy Nash, and singer Aloe Blacc, the special lost 55 percent of its total viewers and 76 percent of its demo audience compared to last year.

Over the last 25 years, the only Sunday primetime lineup with a lesser audience was on February 3, 2013, the night of Super Bowl XLVII.

Despite the admirable goal, “CNN Heroes,” which honors “amazing stories of common individuals transforming the world,” fails to connect with Americans. Shirley Raines, the CNN Hero of the Year for 2021, founded a charity organization that distributes food, clothes, and hair and cosmetics services to the poor in Los Angeles.