Few First-Run Advances Thanks To Virus

Disruptions due to pandemic coverage kept the lid on with only four talkers, two courtrooms, one game and no magazines advancing during the week ending May 24.

Dr. Phil continued to be syndication’s healthiest show in the session ending May 24, improving its ratings for the fourth week in a row and topping the talkers for a second straight stanza with a nine-week high in the Nielsens.

While most strips were stalled in the wake of disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Phil grew 5% from the previous frame to a first-place 2.3 live-plus-same-day national rating, its best performance since the week ending March 22. The talk show king has led the category 183 times in the last 194 weeks, and over the past month has risen 28%.

Live with Kelly and Ryan was a strong second with a steady 2.0, and Ellen DeGeneres was next in line at an unchanged 1.5.

Among the rookie takers, leader Kelly Clarkson scored with a 10% spike to a  1.1 in households, and surged 25% in the key women 25-54 demo despite getting slammed with COVID-19 news preemptions and being partially in reruns.

Elsewhere in daytime, Judge Judy, syndication’s No. 1 show in the household ratings season to date, hung tough at a 5.9 and blew away the court shows for the 1,235th consecutive week even though the strip aired encore episodes on all five days.

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Top freshman jurist Judge Jerry, starring legendary talker Jerry Springer, was the hottest courtroom newcomer, surging 13% to a 0.9 despite being in repeats all week.


In access, half of the top six magazines were dragged lower by eight straight weeks of declining viewing levels as cities began to reopen and the weather got warmer. On the positive side, Access Hollywood, Extra and Daily Mail TV did well by bucking the downtrend and holding their ground at 1.3, 0.9 and 0.8, respectively.

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

  • Live with Kelly and Ryan (0.9, +13% from the week before)
  • Dr. Phil (0.8, unchanged)
  • Maury (0.7, unchanged)
  • Steve Wilkos (0.6, unchanged), tied with Ellen DeGeneres (0.6, unchanged)
  • Kelly Clarkson (0.5, +25%)

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 means not applicable.


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Dr. Phil (CTD) 2.3 +5%

Live with Kelly and Ryan (Disney-ABC) 2.0 NC

Ellen DeGeneres (WBDTD) 1.5 NC

Maury (NBCU) 1.2 +9%

Rachael Ray (CTD) 1.0 NC

Steve Wilkos (NBCU) 1.0 NC

Wendy Williams (Debmar-Mercury) 0.9** -10%

Dr. Oz (Sony) 0.7 -13%

The Real (WBDTD) 0.5 NC

The Doctors (CTD) 0.4 -20%

Jerry Springer (NBCU) 0.3 NC


The Kelly Clarkson Show (NBCU) 1.1 +10%

25 Words or Less (CTD) 1.0 NC

Judge Jerry (NBCU) 0.9 +13%

Tamron Hall (Disney-ABC) 0.9 NC

America Says (Sony) 0.8 NC

Personal Injury Court (MGM) 0.5 NC

Mel Robbins (Sony) 0.4 NC

Protection Court (Trifecta) 0.3 NC


Judge Judy (CTD) 5.9 NC

Hot Bench(CTD) 2.1 NC

People’s Court (WBDTD) 1.5 +7%

Judge Mathis (WBDTD) 0.9 -10%

Divorce Court (20th Television) 0.7 NC

Caught in Providence (Debmar-Mercury) 0.5 +25%


Family Feud (Debmar-Mercury/FMNA) 6.2 -5%

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Jeopardy (CTD) 6.0 +3%

Wheel of Fortune (CTD) 5.8 -3%

Funny You Should Ask(Entertainment Studios) 0.5 NC


Dateline M-F (NBCU) 1.2 +9%

Live PD: Police Patrol (Sony) 1.0 +25%

Chicago P.D. (NBCU) 1.0 +11%


Inside Edition (CTD) 2.6 -4%

Entertainment Tonight (CTD) 2.6 -4%

Access Hollywood (NBCU) 1.3 NC

TMZ (WBDTD) 1.0 -9%

Extra (WBDTD) 0.9 NC

Daily Mail TV (CTD) 0.8 NC

Celebrity Page (Trifecta) 0.2 NC


Big Bang Theory (WBDTD) 3.2 NC

Last Man Standing (20th Television) 2.1 NC

Modern Family (20th Television) 1.4 NC

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

The Goldbergs(Sony) 1.1 NC

Family Guy (20th Television) 1.0 -9%

Seinfeld (Sony) 1.0 -9%

Black-ish (Disney-ABC) 1.0 NC

Mike and Molly (WBDTD) 0.9 -10%

Mom (WBDTD) 0.9 NC

Two Broke Girls (WBDTD)


Dateline Weekly (NBCU) 3.9 +5%

Law & Order: SVU (NBCU) 1.6 NC

NCIS: New Orleans (CTD) 1.2 -8%

Castle (Disney-ABC) 1.1 NC

Law & Order: Criminal Intent (NBCU) 1.0 NC

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