Syndication Ratings: Clocks forward, ratings back

Apr 30, 2001  •  Post A Comment

The onset of daylight savings time continued to wreak havoc on many syndicated series, as “Seinfeld,” “Friends” and “Frasier” each suffered from audience spring fever, according to Nielsen Media Research.
But the time shift has done little to affect several rookie series, with weeklies “Thunderbox” and “Maximum Exposure” as well as “Power of Attorney” all posting gains.
Columbia TriStar Television Distribution’s “Seinfeld” was hit with a one-two combo, making the switch in recent weeks to the Chris-Craft Industries stations as well as to the time change. The result was a drop of 22 percent from its season average for the off-network series, falling to a 4.0 household rating. Among women 18 to 49, the series earned a 2.3 rating.
The leader in households for the genre as well as the demo continued to be Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution’s off-network runs of “Friends,” which pulled a 5.2 score, off 7 percent for the week but earned a strong 4.0 among women 18 to 49.
Paramount Domestic Television’s “Frasier” came in second with a 4.9 household rating, off 4 percent for the week and earning a 3.3 rating among women 18 to 49. After “Seinfeld,” a pair of sophomores took the next two positions, with Warner Bros.’ “Drew Carey Show” earning a
3.3 rating in households and tying “Seinfeld” at a 3.3 rating in the demo. Carsey-Werner-Mandabach’s “3rd Rock From the Sun” wrapped up the top five off-network strips with a 2.9 household rating, a drop of 3 percent week to week, and a 1.9 rating in the women 18 to 49 category.
A pair of rookie hours found a greater foothold in the ratings as Paramount’s “Maximum Exposure” climbed 13 percent to a 1.8 household rating for second place among freshmen. Tribune’s “Andromeda” continued to lead the pack, despite slipping 13 percent to a 2.6.
The other series to bolster its score was the rock ‘n’ roll boxing series “Thunderbox,” which hit its highest household rating ever with a 1.6 score, a rise of 33 percent.
Among the freshman strip crowd, Twentieth’s “Power of Attorney” widened the gap on its household competition with a 10 percent climb to a 2.3 rating. So far this season, the series is No. 1 among all but one female demographic, nailing a 1.3 rating among women 18 to 49, a 1.5 among women 25 to 54 and a 2.1 among females 50-plus. The lone category where it scored second was women 18 to 34, where it scored a 1.1 rating, trailing “Street Smarts.”
“Street Smarts,” tied for third in households among freshman, earned a category-best 1.5 rating among women 18 to 34 but tied both “Power” and “Arrest & Trial” among women 18 to 49 with a 1.3. It landed in eighth place with the oldest demographic of women-50-plus-at a 0.6. In fact, the top six shows (“Power of Attorney,” “Judge Hatchett,” “Street Smarts,” “Arrest & Trial,” “To Tell the Truth” and “Curtis Court” ) were consistent across homes and all female demos except women 50-plus, where “Street Smarts” fell to No. 8.
Despite finishing third among freshman so far this season in households, Studios USA’s “Arrest & Trial” tied for second with women 18 to 34 at a 1.1 rating as well as with women 25 to 54 but fell to fifth in older women with a No. 5 ranking among women 50-plus.
“Curtis Court” led the pack of canceled series with a 1.6 household rating thus far this season, besting fellow canceled series “HouseCalls,” “Dr. Laura” and “Lover or Loser.”#