Viewers Welcome Leno Back

It was a gamble that seems to have paid off—at least for its first night. The Monday night premiere of NBC’s Jay Leno Show was watched by more than 17 million viewers and managed a 5.1 preliminary rating among adults aged 18-49, which is 34 percent better in demographic than the premiere of The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien in June. “Obviously Jay got off to a very nice start last night" with "an incredibly strong audience,” NBC chief Jeff Zucker said Tuesday morning. But hoping to lower expectations, he added, “There's a very long way to go from here. We'll judge this on 52 weeks, not one night."