Magazine Shows Do Bang-Up Business

Stories on Lindsay Lohan and Larry Hagman help drive most of the genre to new season ratings highs in the week ending Dec. 2.

The syndicated magazine shows were on fire in the week ending Dec. 2, which marked the first ratings session following the November sweep. In fact, all seven mags matched or exceeded their highest ratings of the season with stories on the Nov. 29 arrest of Lindsay Lohan for allegedly attacking another woman and reaction to the death of TV icon Larry Hagman.

Magazine Shows

Entertainment Tonight (CTD) led the field with a 21% surge from the week before to a new season high 4.1. ET was also up 5% from last year at this time.

Inside Edition (CTD) added 14% to a new season high 3.2; Access Hollywood (NBCU) jumped 19% to a 1.9, a new record for the season; TMZ (WBDTD) advanced 19% to a 1.9, equaling its previous season high; Extra (WBDTD) improved 7% to a 1.6 and matched its best rating of the season, despite being preempted 15 times during the week for holiday programming. In addition its companion show Extra Weekend spurted 11%.

The Insider (CTD) gained 14% to a 1.6, which also tied its season high, and rookie Dish Nation (Twentieth) was up 25% to a new season high 1.0.

Talk Shows


Among the closely watched talk show newcomers, Katie (Disney-ABC) was tops for the 12th straight week with a 1.7 even though it was in repeats all week and dipped 6% from the previous frame.

Steve Harvey (NBCU) was hot, growing 15% to a 1.5, which was its highest rating ever and the largest week-to-week increase of any talk show.

Jeff Probst (CTD) also showed some spark, matching its series high with a 14% ratings spike to a 0.8. Ricki Lake (Twentieth) sank 13% to a 0.7 in fourth place among the five rookies, while Trisha (NBCU) held steady at a 0.5.

Dr. Phil (CTD) was easily the No. 1 talk show overall for the 11th week in a row with a 19% ratings margin over the field. Phil clocked a 3.1, easing 6% from the week before, although gaining 3% from last year at this time.

Phil also continued to be the highest-rated talker among women 25-54, growing 13% from last year to a 1.8 in the key demo.

Ellen (WBDTD) maintained its strong 2.6 rating of the previous week and outperformed last year’s delivery by 4%. Live with Kelly and Michael (Disney-ABC), which has been booming since Michael Strahan joined the show, moved up to a second-place tie with Ellen, rising 4% to a 2.6, and hit a five-year high in the key women 25-54 demo, season to date.

Maury (NBCU) continued to improve, climbing 4% both week to week and year to year to a 2.4 and leading the field among women 18-34 and women 18-49.

Dr. Oz (Sony) added 4% to a 2.4; Steve Wilkos Show (NBCU) held firm at its series high 1.5 for a fourth straight week while increasing 15% from last year, which was the biggest year-to-year improvement of any talker; while Wendy Williams (Debmar-Mercury) hit a season-to-date best with a 1.2.

Court Shows

Among court shows, Judge Judy (CTD) was far in front with a 7.0 despite being off 3% from the week before. Judge Joe Brown (CTD) was up 4% to a second-place 2.4; People’s Court (WBDTD) finished 11% higher at a 2.0; and Judge Mathis (WBDTD) tacked on 6% to a 1.7.

Game Shows

In game show action, Wheel of Fortune (CTD) and Jeopardy (CTD) both hit new season highs, with Wheel rebounding 19% to a 7.5 and Jeopardy recovering 18% to a 6.5. Family Feud (Debmar-Mercury) shot up 20% to a new series high 4.9; Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (Disney-ABC) appreciated 14% to a 2.4; while rookie Baggage (GSN) was unchanged at a 1.2.

Off-Net Sitcoms

Big Bang Theory (WBDTD) ruled the off-net sitcoms with a 7.3, which was up 14% from the prior session. Two and a Half Men (WBDTD) also added 14% to a new season high 5.7; Family Guy (Twentieth) gained 14% to a new season high 4.0; and How I Met Your Mother (Twentieth) moved up 4% to a new season high 2.9.

Off-Net Weekly Hours

Among off-net weekly Hours, Law & Order: SVU (NBCU) continued to lead, but was down 5% to a 4.0. Sister show Law & Order (NBCU) was unchanged at a 3.0; Criminal Minds (CTD) fell 4% to a 2.6; CSI: Miami (CTD) was flat at a 2.5; and House (NBCU) lost 17% to a 2.4.

Stories on Lindsay Lohan and Larry Hagman help drive most of the genre to new season ratings highs in the week ending Dec. 2.

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