The debut of Howard Stern on America's Got Talent failed to boost ratings for the flagging talent show. In fact, the season premiere saw ratings plunge 30 percent from a year ago -- to 10.3 million viewers, according to overnight Nielsens -- versus the series' season premiere a year ago. However, the Los Angeles Times noted that Talent opened earlier this year than last and thus faced tougher competition than it did then. For NBC, which remains the lowest-rated broadcast network, the results must have proved disappointing -- particularly given the network's nonstop promotions for Stern's debut. Commenting on Stern's performance, the Times observed, "It seems we can look forward to him being, at turns, self-effacing and self-promoting, sincere and sassy, surprisingly in command and sometimes downright sentimental."