August 21, 2012 1:15pm PT by Michael O'Connell
Rihanna Interview Gives OWN Second-Highest Ratings Ever With 2.5 Million
The Oprah Winfrey Network continues to see its best ratings returns with what its founder's audience has long come to expect from her: sit-down interviews with big stars.
Sunday night saw the network's second-highest ratings ever thanks to a well-publicized appearance from Rihanna on Oprah's Next Chapter. The one-hour broadcast, which saw Winfrey visiting the singer in her native Barbados, pulled in 2.5 million viewers. Only the Next Chapter episode in the wake of Whitney Houston's death fared better with 3.5 million viewers.
Oprah's Next Chapter also sealed up time-slot victories in its coveted female demographics across ad-supported cable, earning a 2.4 rating among women 25-54 and a 2.5 rating with women 18-49.
Strategic placement ahead of the 10 p.m. series premiere of OWN original Lovetown, USA gave the network another boost. Although it retained little more than 30 percent of its lead-in, Lovetown now ranks as the second-highest-rated original premiere in OWN history. Its 758,000-viewer haul marked 11 percent growth, year over year, in the time slot.