Ad Gauge: Which Shows Command Top Dollar For Commercials?

'Glee's Lea Michele, 'American Idol' host Ryan Seacrest and 'Mike & Molly's Melissa McCarthy (Fox/CBS)

'Glee's Lea Michele, 'American Idol' host Ryan Seacrest and 'Mike & Molly's Melissa McCarthy (Fox/CBS)

American Idol‘ might have an uncertain future as far as how Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler will fare behind the judges’ table once Season 10 starts, but one thing’s for sure: TV’s most watched series continues to print money for Fox.

Advertising Age reports that ad rates for ‘Idol’ remain the highest in primetime, with the Tuesday-night performance shows fetching an average of $467,617 per 30-second spot, while Wednesday’s results shows command a cool $400K per commercial.

Compare those numbers to the shows ‘Idol’ is up against – CBS’ well-watched ‘NCIS’ ($150,708 per commercial) and ‘Survivor’ ($153,636 per spot) – and they seem especially impressive.

‘Idol’s unbeatable audience shines a golden afterglow on ‘Glee‘: The hit musicomedy’s average ad rate jumps from $273,000/spot to $373,000 when ‘Idol’ is in season and leads off the night.

Fox in fact airs half of the highest-priced programs on TV. Here’s a look at primetime’s Top 5 scripted shows, according to Ad Age:

1. ‘Glee,’ Fox – $273K/spot ($373K when it airs after ‘Idol’)
2. ‘Family Guy,’ Fox – $260K/spot
3. ‘The Simpsons,’ Fox – $253K/spot
4. ‘House,’ Fox – $226K/spot
5. ‘Grey’s Anatomy,’ ABC – $222K/spot

During ‘Idol’s “off season,” it’s NBC’s weekly Sunday night NFL broadcast that tops the pack, piling on $415,000 per 30-second commercial.

Other ad rates of note from Ad Age‘s report:

* CBS’ ‘Mike & Molly‘ is filling the fattest wallet of any freshman show, averaging $189,000 per spot. It’s followed by NBC’s ‘The Event‘ and CBS’ ‘Hawaii Five-0‘ (both of which fetch about $135K). Jimmy Smits’ ‘Outlaw’ was collecting a mere $59K/spot when it got plucked out of production by the Peacock.

* Got some spare change in the sofa or under your Hyundai’s floor mat? TV’s two biggest bargains live on The CW: ‘Hellcats‘ and ‘Supernatural‘ both will sell you 30 seconds of time for just $30,000.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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