The talk show tops first run gainers with a 16% rise from the previous week. Despite preemptions for March Madness, many other shows turned in strong performances for the week ending March 29.
CBS Television Distribution’s Dr. Phil scored the biggest week-to-week increase of any strip in first-run syndication, although plenty of other daytime shows were hot in the week ending March 29.
The strong week came despite the continuation of March Madness, which bumped many shows on CBS affiliates out of their usual time periods. In total, seven talk shows were up from the week before, four were unchanged and none were down.
Phil had the sharpest increase, leaping 16% to a 3.6. The gain came despite the fact that the show runs on numerous CBS stations and was widely preempted due to the NCAA men’s basketball tournament on March 26 and 27. In fact, Phil did not air in seven of the top 20 markets, including Los Angeles.
Top-rated chatfest CBS Television Distribution’s Oprah was up 8% to a 5.3; Disney-ABC’s Live with Regis and Kelly also added 8% to a 2.8; Warner Bros.’ Ellen DeGeneres jumped 5% to a 2.3 with a show featuring Noah Wyle discussing his ER series finale pulling a 2.4 on March 23; CBS Television Distribution’s Rachael Ray rose 6% to a 1.8 after getting an 18% boost to a 2.0 from a Joy Behar appearance on March 27; NBCU’s Maury was flat at a 1.8; Warner Bros.’ Tyra Banks matched her season high with a 9% improvement to a 1.2 as a show about a mother trying to leave her X-rated lifestyle sent ratings up 18% to a 1.3 on March 25; and NBCU’s Steve Wilkos Show was up 9% to a 1.2, equaling its previous season high.
Freshman shows were also on the move. CBS Television Distribution’s The Doctors made it 10 weeks in a row as the No. 1 rookie (including ties) with growth of 6% from the week before to a 1.9.
NBCU’s Deal or No Deal kept pace, gaining 6% to a 1.8; Warner Bros.’ Bonnie Hunt climbed 11% to 1.0; and Sony’s Judge Karen, Debmar-Mercury’s Trivial Pursuit: America Plays and Program Partners’ Family Court with Judge Penny remained stuck at 0.9, 0.6 and 0.5, respectively.
Court shows joined the ratings rally as leader CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy increased its dominance over the category with a 7% gain to a 4.4. A child custody case with a 21-year-old mom and a 53-year-old dad was awarded a 15% ratings spike to a weekly high 4.7 for Judy on March 23.
Second-place CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Joe Brown was up for a second week, advancing 5% to a 2.3; Warner Bros.’ People’s Court was flat at a 2.0, but Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis gained 6% to 1.7 and Twentieth’s Judge Alex advanced 7% to a 1.6.
CBS Television Distribution’s Entertainment Tonight easily led the mags with a 4.3, dipping 2% week to week, but still growing 10% over last year at this time, which was the biggest year-to-year improvement of any access strip in first run.
CBS Television Distribution’s Inside Edition was flat at a 2.9; Warner Bros.’ TMZ rose 5%, both week to week and year to year, to a 2.3; NBCU’s Access Hollywood and Warner Bros.’ Extra were unchanged at a 2.2 and 1.8, respectively; while CBS Television Distribution’s The Insider fell 16% to a 1.6 after getting hit with a slew of basketball preemptions.
Game shows posted modest gains, with CBS Television Distribution’s Wheel of Fortune inching up 1% to a 7.3; CBS Television Distribution’s Jeopardy! edging ahead 4% to a 5.7; and Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire recovering 4% to a 2.4 after falling to a new season low the week before. At the back of the pack, Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud was flat at a 1.5.
Off-net sitcoms were up, with Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men moving 2% higher to a 4.9; Twentieth’s Family Guy gained 5% to a 4.0; and Sony’s Seinfeld surged 9% to a 3.7, although CBS Television Distribution’s Everybody Loves Raymond slipped 3% to a 3.0.
New off-net weekly hours were topped by CBS Television Distribution’s CSI: NY, which added 3% to a 3.5; NBCU’s House appreciated 9% to a 2.4; NBCU’s Monk jumped 20% to a 1.8, but Twentieth’s Boston Legal lost 6% to a 1.5.
The off-TBS strip Debmar-Mercury’s House of Payne picked up 5% to a 2.3 and the off-cable Litton’s Storm Stories was unchanged at a 1.3.