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VMA ratings: Biggest MTV audience ever

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Bruno Mars VMA
Getty Images

Lady Gaga is going to have to host the show next year to top this. MTV’s annual Video Music Awards just scored its biggest audience ever last night — 12.4 million viewers.

Not only are those record-setting numbers for the VMAs, but last night’s show was also the most-watched single telecast in MTV’s history. The viewership is up 9 percent from last year’s show and stands as the most-watched non-sports cable telecast of the year (VMA winners and losers here).

UPDATE: Jersey Shore, which served as a lead in (recap here), netted a good — but not record setting — 8 million viewers. The pilot preview of I Want My Pants Back (exclusive trailer here) landed 5.1 million viewers after the show — though quite a drop off from the VMAs, that’s still a strong sampling for MTV, especially for a scripted show. The comedy is set to debut Jan. 2012.

Read more:

MTV VMAs 2011: Best/Worst Style

MTV VMAs 2011: Grading the Performances

MTV 2011 VMAs: Beyonce’s baby bump, the moving Amy Winehouse tribute, and other memorable moments

The MTV Video Music Awards was a conservative show, not a bad thing: A review

MTV 2011 VMAs: Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Adele big winners

Tyler, the Creator: Learn more about the potty-mouthed 2011 VMAs’ Best New Artist winner

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