By DAVID BAUDER, Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) — NBC hoped the Super Bowl would prompt viewers to sample a couple of its promising new shows. At least initially, the network is getting its wish.
The Nielsen company says the second season of "The Voice" premiered to 37.6 million people right after the Super Bowl on Sunday. The game itself had a staggering audience of 111.3 million, the largest ever for a television show in the U.S.
Perhaps more importantly, "The Voice" had 17.7 million viewers the next night, on Monday, up by 49 percent from its average during the first season. The backstage Broadway drama "Smash" got just under 12 million viewers for its premiere episode on Monday.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.