Magazines the only genre to post gains in the week ended July 2.
Only syndie magazines had something to celebrate as the four-day July 4th weekend kicked off on the week ending July 2. Magazines and games both held their own or improved, while court largely held steady and off-net sitcoms were down year-to-year across the board.
Magazines are significantly helped by being one of the few syndie genres to not be in repeats. They also got a boost from their continuing coverage Star Jones Reynolds’ resignation/firing from ABC’s daytime talkfest, The View, and Reynolds’ public feud with creator, host and executive producer Barbara Walters.
Ratings for all five magazines were up over last year, an anomaly in recent syndication ratings. By comparison, no other genre had more than two shows that improved year to year.
CBS Paramount’s Entertainment Tonight had its highest ratings in five weeks, with a 4.7 household rating, according to Nielsen’s live plus same day ratings. That’s up 12% over last year and was the strongest year-over-year performance in the genre. ET also was up 2% from the prior week.
In second place, King World’s Inside Edition at a 3.1 was up 11% over last year and even with the prior week. CBS Paramount’s ET spin-off, The Insider, showed its best rating in six weeks at a 2.6. That was up 4% for the year and the week.
At a 2.2, NBC Universal’s Access Hollywood was up 10% over last year, although down 4% on the week. And Warner Bros.’ Extra! was up 5% for the year and week to a 2.0.
Game shows were the next-best performers, with two of the four, Buena Vista’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire and Tribune’s Family Feud, showing year-over-year increases. King World’s Wheel of Fortune, perennially syndication’s top strip, remained the top game with a 6.9, up 1% for the week and down 7% from last year. King World’s Jeopardy! held its second place standing with a 5.6, flat for the week and down 8% from last year. Millionaire at a 3.1 was unchanged for the week but up 7% from last year. And Feud at a 2.2 was up 5% for the week and 16% for the year.
Meanwhile, the talk shows, mostly in summer repeats, were mixed. King World’s Oprah dropped to a new season low 5.2, the show’s third new low in the past four weeks. The show was down 9% on the week and 5% on the year. At a 4.3, King World’s Dr. Phil dipped 4% for the week and 10% for the year. Buena Vista’s Live with Regis and Kelly, which is rarely in repeats, had hit a new season low in the prior week, but recovered this week to a 3.3, a 14% increase for the week and flat compared last year.
In fourth place, NBC Universal’s Maury at a 2.6 was even with the prior week, but down 10% from the prior year. CBS Paramount’s Montel Williams was up 6% to a 1.9, and unchanged from last year. That was good enough for struggling Montel to pull ahead of NBC Universal’s Jerry Springer, which has been facing large year-to-year drops for the past few months. Springer, at a 1.8, fell 5% for the week and lost 22% for the year, the biggest year-to-year decline for any talker.
Finally, Warner Bros.’ Ellen Degeneres hit a new season low for the second week in a row, losing 6% to drop to a 1.6. Last year, Nielsen broke out Ellen’s ratings on all five days of this week due to coverage of the Wimbledon tennis tournament.
Warner Bros.’ Tyra Banks was the week’s top rookie talker for the fourth week in a row with a 1.4, holding steady with the prior week. NBCU’s Martha was a close second with a 1.3, up 8% for the week.
Among the court shows, CBS Paramount’s Judge Judy at a 4.5 was unchanged for the week and up 2% from last year. CBS Paramount’s Judge Joe Brown at a 2.9 was up 4% for the week but down 3% from last year. Warner Bros.’ People’s Court at a 2.7 was up 4% for the week and unchanged from last year. Twentieth’s Divorce Court was down 2% to a 2.4, down 8% from last year. Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis was up 5% to a 2.3 but down 8% from last year. Twentieth’s rookie Judge Alex was unchanged at a 2.0 and Sony’s Judge Hatchett was down 6% to a 1.7, falling 11% from last year.
The off-net sitcoms continued to struggle year to year, with King World’s Everybody Loves Raymond up 2% to a 5.0, but down 12% from last year. Sony’s Seinfeld was second at a 4.6, flat for the week and down 12% from last year. Warner Bros.’ Friends was reprocessed by Nielsen for a third straight week, so no rating was available.
Twentieth’s Bernie Mac was the winner among the off-net rookies, jumping 6% for the week to a 1.9, tying Buena Vista’s My Wife and Kids, which was down 5%. Warner Bros.’ Sex and the City fell to a new season-low 1.8, dropping 10% for the week.