2021 Emmys accomplishes award show rarity as ratings go up to 7.4 million viewers

6.1 million people watched the Emmys in 2020, compared to 6.9 million the year prior

The Emmys accomplished what is becoming a rarity for awards shows these days, by actually increasing its viewership over the previous years.

The Nielsen company estimated that 7.4 million people watched Sunday night's show, where the comedy "Ted Lasso" and streaming service Netflix were the big winners.

That's up from the 6.1 million people who watched a ceremony sharply curtailed by the COVID-19 pandemic last year. The previous year, 6.9 million people watched the show that celebrates television programming.

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The Nielsen company estimated that 7.4 million people watched Sunday night's show – up from 6.1 million viewers in 2020.

The Nielsen company estimated that 7.4 million people watched Sunday night's show – up from 6.1 million viewers in 2020. (ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)

CBS estimates the viewership number should increase slightly when Nielsen's count of people who watched outside of their homes is included. Those numbers weren't immediately available on Monday.

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Awards shows of all types have struggled in the ratings the past couple of years, victims of television's trend toward streaming and viewers deciding what they want to watch and when.

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Streaming services were celebrated at the Emmys, where Netflix tied a record for most individual awards in a year, helped primarily by "The Crown" and "The Queen's Gambit." The comedy "Ted Lasso" is on the Apple TV+ service.