New Syndies Get Season Off To Strong Start

A slew of closely watched, brand new and returning syndicated strips delivered high national numbers for their season premieres in the session ending Sept. 15, despite being preempted by the Democratic presidential debates and suffering schedule upheavals for 9/11 memorial coverage in some cases.

Among the prominent new talkers launched on Sept. 9, The Kelly Clarkson Show debuted to a huge 1.6 live-plus-same-day national Nielsen rating, the most powerful first week of any first-run program since 2012.

Among all 14 syndicated talkers, Clarkson’s initial weekly outing ranks right behind only Ellen DeGeneres, Live with Kelly and Ryan and talk leader Dr. Phil.

Also premiering Sept. 9, Tamron Hall, which has fewer multiple runs than Clarkson’s widely cleared show, still scored a very respectable 1.0 premiere week with well over 1.3 million daily viewers.

Compared to the veteran talkers, Tamron’s first week tied the popular Rachael Ray and even out-performed several of the best-known, long-running gab fests. Additionally, despite having its primary run preempted in top market New York on Sept. 11, Tamron’s rating represented the highest premiere week for any first-run show since 2016 other than Clarkson and the reboot of Steve Harvey.

Following Tamron was the third new talk entry, The Mel Robbins Show, which got underway Sept. 16 and for its debut week averaged a weighted 0.4 rating/2 share for its primary runs in the metered markets. That was down 50% from the strip’s year-ago time period.


Meanwhile, the first week’s national rating for Judge Jerry starring Jerry Springer got a very favorable Nielsen verdict of a 1.1 for the frame ending Sept. 15. That was the highest opening week for an original court show since hit gaveler Hot Bench bowed in 2014.

Among the veterans, Dr. Phil began its 18th season with a 5% improvement to a 2.3, leading the talk brigade for a staggering 158th week in a row.

Live, which did not air in New York on Sept. 11, still hung tough at a 1.9, tying the 17th season premiere week of Ellen. Ellen, which now follows the new Clarkson in over a dozen big markets — including all of the top six — soared 36% to a 1.9.

Easily leading all of syndication for the seventh straight session was the Hon. Judge Judy, which blew away all other shows with a 10% surge to a 16-week high 6.7 for its 24th season premiere week.

In access, the biggest percentage mover by far was Access Hollywood, which soared 27% to a 27-week high 1.4 for its Season 24 opener. In addition, the show skyrocketed 40% in the key women 25-54 demo and rose 17% from last year, the most of any magazine.

Inside Edition led the magazines with an unchanged 2.6.

The week’s top-rated daytime talk shows in the women 25-54 demo were:

  • Dr. Phil (1.0, unchanged from the week before)
  • Live with Kelly and Ryan (0.9, unchanged), tied with Ellen DeGeneres (0.9, +50%)
  • Kelly Clarkson (0.7, premiere week), tied with Maury (0.7, +17%)
  • Steve Wilkos (0.5, unchanged)

In the household rating rankings that follow, % change is from the previous week; * indicates a new season-high rating; ** indicates a new season low; NC indicates no change from the previous week; NA mean not applicable.


Dr. Phil (CTD) 2.3 +5%

Live with Kelly and Ryan (Disney-ABC) 1.9 NC

Ellen DeGeneres (WBDTD) 1.9 +36

Maury (NBCU) 1.2 NC

Rachael Ray (CTD) 1.0 NC

Steve Wilkos (NBCU) 1.0 NC

Wendy Williams (Debmar-Mercury) 0.9 NC

Dr. Oz (Sony) 0.9 +13%

The Real (WBDTD) 0.5 +25%

The Doctors (CTD) 0.5 NC

Jerry Springer (NBCU) 0.3 -25%


The Kelly Clarkson Show (NBCU) 1.6

Judge Jerry (NBCU) 1.1

Tamron Hall (Disney-ABC) 1.0


Judge Judy (CTD) 6.7 +10%

Hot Bench(CTD) 1.9 -5%

People’s Court (WBDTD) 1.5 +25%

Judge Mathis (WBDTD) 1.0 +11%

Divorce Court (20th Television) 0.7 NC

Caught in Providence (Debmar-Mercury) 0.5 NC


Family Feud (Debmar-Mercury/FMNA) 5.7 NC

Jeopardy (CTD) 5.5 +20%

Wheel of Fortune (CTD) 5.3 +10%

Funny You Should Ask(Entertainment Studios) 0.5 NC


Dateline M-F (NBCU) 1.2 NC

Live PD: Police Patrol (Sony) 1.0 NC

Chicago P.D. (NBCU) 0.8 -11%


Inside Edition (CTD) 2.6 NC

Entertainment Tonight (CTD) 2.5 NC

Access Hollywood (NBCU) 1.4 +27%


Extra (WBDTD) 0.9 -10%

Daily Mail TV (CTD) 0.8 -11%

Page Six TV(20th Television) 0.4 -20%

Celebrity Page (Trifecta) 0.2 NC


Big Bang Theory (WBDTD) 2.9** -22%

Last Man Standing (20th Television) 2.1 NC

Modern Family (20th Television) 1.5 NC

Two and a Half Men (WBDTD) 1.2 -8%

The Goldbergs(Sony) 1.2 NC

Family Guy (20th Television) 1.0 NC

Black-ish (Disney-ABC) 1.0 NC

Mike and Molly (WBDTD) 0.9 -10%

Seinfeld (Sony) 0.9 -10%

Two Broke Girls (WBDTD) 0.8 NC


Dateline Weekly (NBCU) 3.3 +6%

Law & Order: Criminal Intent (NBCU) 1.4 +8%

NCIS: New Orleans (CTD) 1.3 -7%

Chicago P.D. (NBCU) 1.1 -8%

Castle (Disney-ABC) 1.0 -9%

Madam Secretary (CTD) 0.9 NC

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