For the first time in a long time, most syndicated shows showed week-to-week improvement in the week ended Oct. 15, even after numerous preemptions due to Major League Baseball playoffs.
For the first time in a long time, most syndicated shows showed week-to-week improvement in the week ended Oct. 15, even after numerous preemptions due to Major League Baseball playoffs. Meanwhile, things weren’t looking nearly as good for many shows on a year-to-year basis.
Buena Vista’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire, hosted by new Today Show anchor Meredith Vieira, showed the biggest year-to-year improvement of any syndicated strip for the second week in a row. That’s perhaps because the show, entering its fifth season, has seen upgrades in several markets.
During the week of Oct. 15, the show hit its highest ratings since early April and was up 18% over last year to a 3.3, according to Nielsen’s national live plus same day household ratings. The show also was up 6% from the prior week.
Otherwise, the magazines were the most improved genre both week to week and year to year. Comparatively, none of the court or talk shows improved for the year, although most of them were up for the week.
CBS Paramount’s Entertainment Tonight remained the top-rated magazine with a 5.2, the show’s best performance in more than six months. The show’s ratings were fueled by coverage of New York Yankees’ pitcher Cory Lidle crashing his small plane into a New York City apartment building. That show averaged a 5.6 household rating on Oct. 11. ET was up 2% for the week and had the biggest year-to-year increase among magazines, jumping 6% from last year.
Inside Edition was unchanged at a 3.5 and up 3% from last year. In third place, CBS Paramount’s The Insider showed the largest weekly gain in the genre, jumping 8% to a 2.7, a 4% bump over last year. NBC Universal’s Access Hollywood was unchanged for both the week and year at a 2.6 and Warner Bros.’ Extra! was up 5% to a 2.2, holding steady with last year.
Twentieth’s new magazine, Geraldo at Large, was down 7% to a 1.3. The show, which airs almost exclusively on Fox owned stations and affiliates in large markets, was frequently preempted by the Major League Baseball playoffs and was broken out completely on Friday.
Almost all of the talk shows were significantly down for the year. NBCU’s Jerry Springer showed the biggest weekly improvement among the talkers, gaining 14% for the week to a 1.6, but down 20% for the year. Springer’s been the recipient of a lot of free publicity over the past few weeks as one of the participants on ABC’s hit reality show, Dancing with the Stars.
The top-rated talker, per usual, was King World’s Oprah at a 6.7, unchanged for the week but down 12% for the year. Oprah’s top-rated show of the week was “Dr. Oz Answers Your Most Embarrassing Questions,” which scored a 7.8.
CBS Paramount’s Dr. Phil was up 7% for the week to a 4.8, but down 13% for the year. Buena Vista’s Live with Regis and Kelly was up 6% to a 3.3. Regis and Kelly had the smallest yearly drop of any show, dipping 3% for the year. NBCU’s Maury was up 5% to a 2.3, but fell 15% for the year. Warner Bros.’ Ellen Degeneres was up 11% to a 2.0, but down 17% for the year. CBS Paramount’s Montel Williams was unchanged for the week at a 1.7, but 19% for the year. Warner Bros.’ Tyra Banks was up 8% for the week to a 1.4, but down 22% for the year. NBC U’s Martha hit its highest ratings in 19 weeks, gaining 8% to a 1.4, tying Tyra, but dropping 18% for the year.
Among the rookie talkers, King World’s Rachael Ray again the clear leader of the pack at a 2.0, holding steady with the prior week. Warner Bros.’ Dr. Keith Ablow claimed sole possession of second place at a 0.9, unchanged from the prior week. NBC U’s Megan Mullally, which has been downgraded in New York, Los Angeles and Columbus, Ohio, was down 11% to a 0.8. And Sony’s Greg Behrendt was down 13% to a 0.7, the show’s lowest rating yet. Ablow, Mullally and Behrendt are syndication’s three lowest-rated talkers.
Among the rookie off-nets, Buena Vista’s According to Jim gained 6% to a 1.8. Buena Vista’s Scrubs was unchanged at a 1.5. Twentieth’s Still Standing was up 7% to a 1.5, tying Scrubs. CBS Paramount’s One on One was up 13% to a 0.9.
Among the weekend rookie hours, King World’s CSI: Miami continued to lead the new off-net dramas with a 5.2. up 13%. Warner Bros.’ Without a Trace was up 15% to a 3.1. Tribune’s American Idol Rewind gained 4% to a 2.7. Sony’s The Shield, off of cable network FX, was down 13% to a 1.4. CBS Paramount’s Star Trek: The Original Series was up 8% to a 1.3. And New Line’s Masterminds, off Court TV, was up 50% to a 0.9.
None of the court shows were up for the year, but many showed improvement on the week. Twentieth’s Divorce Court was the genre’s most improved, showed a double-digit increase for the week, jumping 11% to a 2.1, but falling 16% for the year. CBS Paramount’s Judge Judy, the genre leader, was up 7% for the week to a 4.5, a mere 2% drop for the year. In second place, CBS Paramount’s Judge Joe Brown gained 4% on the week to a 2.7, but dipped 10% on the year. Right behind Joe came Warner Bros.’ People’s Court, up 4% for the week to a 2.6 and down 7% for the year. Warner Bros’ Judge Mathis rose 9% for the week to a 2.4, and held steady year to year. Twentieth’s Judge Alex gained 6% to a 1.9, a 10% year-to-year drop. And Sony’s Judge Hatchett was unchanged for the week at a 1.4, but plunged 26% for the year.
The two rookie court shows both gained week to week. Twentieth’s Cristina’s Court was up 8% to a 1.4, while Sony’s Judge Maria Lopez added 13% to a 0.9.
Finally, the game shows mostly held steady. King World’s Wheel of Fortune climbed 4% on the week and 1% on the year to an 8.2. King World’s Jeopardy! grew 5% on the week and 3% on the year to a 6.4. Meanwhile, Tribune’s Family Feud, with new host John O’Hurley, was down 6% on the week to a 1.7, an 11% year-to-year loss.