Five chatfests posted gains from the week before. The other genres weren’t so successful with lower numbers the norm for court shows, most magazines and game shows.
As expected, ratings for most of syndication slipped in the holiday week ending April 12. It was the first week after the sweep and many shows began airing repeats as Passover, Good Friday and Easter all came in the same week.
In addition, viewing levels declined and some shows with clearances on CBS affiliates were preempted by coverage of the NCAA men’s basketball championship game on April 6.
The only bright spot was the talk arena, where five chatfests were up from the week before. NBCU’s Martha had largest percentage increase, jumping 14% to a 0.8. The big show was an episode with Joan Rivers helping Stewart turn traditional matzoh into a special treat, which reached a total audience of 1.6 million viewers on April 6.
Warner Bros.’ Tyra Banks matched its season-high 1.2, growing 9% after seeing an 18% jump to a 1.3 for a headline-making interview on April 6 with Levi Johnston, the former fiancée of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s daughter Bristol. NBCU’s Jerry Springer also rose 9% to a 1.2; NBCU’s Maury gained 6% to a 1.8 and Disney-ABC’s Live with Regis and Kelly inched up 4% to a 2.7.
In addition, four talkers outperformed their year-ago delivery: CBS Television Distribution’s Rachael Ray was up 6% from last year to a 1.8; Tyra and Springer up each up 9% to a 1.2; and NBCU’s Steve Wilkos Show was up 11% to a 1.0.
CBS Television Distribution’s Oprah held onto the top spot on the talk list but had the worst decline in any show in daytime, sinking 21% from the week before to a 4.6. CBS Television Distribution’s Dr. Phil was down 9% to a 3.0; Warner Bros.’ Ellen DeGeneres lost 17% to a 1.9 with an all-rerun week; Ray held steady at a 1.8; and Wilkos dropped 9% to a 1.0.
All of the court shows were down week to week, except for Twentieth’s Divorce Court, which held steady at a 1.3 nationally and grew 9% in the metered markets.
CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy continued to dominate the category, holding a 2-1 margin over its nearest courtroom competitor after dipping 2% to a 4.2. Jo CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Joe Brown e was down 5% to 2.1; Warner Bros.’ People’s Court lost 5% to a 1.8; Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis and Twentieth’s Judge Alex each dropped to new season lows, sliding 7% to a 1.4; Twentieth’s Cristina’s Court fell 9% to a 1.0; and Sony’s Judge David Young was down 13% to a 0.7.
Among rookies, CBS Television Distribution’s The Doctors made it an even dozen weeks in a row as freshman champion despite dipping 5% with five repeat shows to a 1.8. Running a solid second was NBCU’s Deal or No Deal with a 1.6, down 6%; Warner Bros.’ Bonnie Hunt was flat at a 0.9; followed Sony’s Judge Karen, which tumbled 11% to a new season low 0.8; Debmar-Mercury’s Trivial Pursuit: America Plays was flat at a 0.6; and Program Partners’ Family Court with Judge Penny plummeted 20% to new season low 0.4.
Heading the mags was CBS Television Distribution’s Entertainment Tonight, which was down 5% to 3.9, although its weekend version, Entertainment Tonight, Weekend rose 13% to a 1.7. CBS Television Distribution’s Inside Edition and Warner Bros.’ TMZ were flat at 2.9 and 2.2, respectively; NBCU’s Access Hollywood fell 5% to a 2.0; CBS Television Distribution’s The Insider slipped 6% to a 1.7 after losing its primary run in 10 big markets — including Los Angeles — due to the basketball championship on April 6; and Warner Bros.’ Extra declined 11% to a 1.6.
Among games, CBS Television Distribution’s Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!each skidded 8% to 6.6 and 5.6, respectively. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire fell 4% to a 2.3; and Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud remained flat at a 1.4.
In off-net news, Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men was on top but down 2% to a 4.8; Twentieth’s Family Guy held firm at a 4.0; Sony’s Seinfeld slipped 5% to a 3.5; while Warner Bros.’ George Lopez Show jumped 11% to a 3.1.
CBS Television Distribution’s CSI: NY led the new off-net weekly hours with an unchanged 3.4; NBCU’s House was marked down 8% to a 2.3; Twentieth’s Boston Legal and NBCU’s Monk were flat at 1.7 and 1.6, respectively; but Disney-ABC’s Desperate Housewives was up 15% to a 1.5.
First-run action hour Disney-ABC’s Legend of the Seeker remained at its season low 1.4 for a second week. The off-cable Litton’s Storm Stories was calm at an unchanged 1.4 while the off-TBS strip Debmar-Mercury’s House of Payne added 10% to a 2.3.