MTV's 2002 Video Music Awards, fueled in no small part by GUNS N' ROSES' "surprise" appearance in the show's finale, earned record overnight ratings, according to Hits Daily Double. An average of 7.8 million people watched the show, with a 11.1 rating for persons 12-34, up 5% from 2001. That made the VMAs the #1 rated and most-watched basic cable program for 2002 among households and 12-34-year-olds, with a 8.3 HH number. The 2002 VMAs were also the highest-rated ever among 25-34-year-olds, and the second highest-rated telecast among persons 12-34 in the history of the channel. MTV/MTV2 President Van Toffler called the show "a success on so many different levels—an amazing lineup of live performances, a great host, beautiful stars, and tons of surprises that the VMAs are known for. Especially Christina Aguilera's schmata." The pre-show ratings were up 16% among 12-34-year-olds, while the post-show was up 33%, garnering a 7.0 for 12-34-year-olds.
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