Seventeen seasons into the series and Dancing With the Stars is still going strong!

Strong is relative, of course, and even though Nielsen’s new end-of-year statistics show DWTS was the most-viewed reality TV show of 2013, it’s down from its height of just a few years ago, and still not matching competitors like The Voice in that key 18-49 demographic. But it’s still a great achievement for a veteran show, and big numbers should count for a lot, even if advertisers are snobs about viewers over 50. (Ageists!)

Nielsen just released a detailed list called Tops of 2013: TV and Social Media, with DWTS mentioned in a couple of different categories.

For example, DWTS is the highest-ranking reality TV show in the list of Top 10 Primetime TV Programs of 2013 Regularly Scheduled. NBC Sunday Night Football tops the list with 21.7 million viewers, but at No. 5, after NCIS, is DWTS with 13,862,000 viewers. No. 6 is more football, with American Idol's Wednesday show at No. 7 with 13,384,000 viewers. The Big Bang Theory follows that, then American Idol's Thursday show, then the DWTS Results Show at No. 10. Remember the old Tuesday show? Sniff.

DWTS also ranks high on the Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings list, ranking the average unique audience and average tweets shared during each show. AMC's Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead have the top two spots, followed by FX's American Horror Story: Coven, then ABC's Scandal. DWTS is the top reality show again, though, taking the next spot with 78,000 average tweets from an average unique audience of 2,219,000. That beat NBC's The Voice, which had a lower count for its audience at 2,132,000 but did have a higher average of tweets at 208,000.

So, once again, DWTS has higher overall audience numbers than timeslot rival The Voice, and maybe they can use the Twitter stats to impress the network and advertisers.

The Powers That Be tend to get stuck on the youth angle, but perhaps combining the big audiences for the Monday and Tuesday DWTS shows with the large Twitter crowd will be enough to convince them that DWTS has the kind of engaged audience they should support in 2014 with two nights of programming. Bring back the Results Show!

Source: Nielsen