Syndication Ratings: `Xena,’ ratings princess

Jul 16, 2001  •  Post A Comment

A series finale proved to be one sure cure for the summertime blues, though most syndicated programs took minor hits in both households ratings and key demos compared with the same period a year ago, according to Nielsen Media Research for the week ending July 1.
Part 2 of the series finale of Studios USA Domestic Television’s “Xena” finished the week as the top first-run weekly hour for the first time this season. The warrior princess’s getting beheaded and cremated helped the series tie its season high of 3.9, up 22 percent for the week.
“Xena’s” 3.9 household rating outperformed the “Hercules” series finale from the week of Nov. 29, 1999 (3.7) by 5 percent despite airing in June, when, typically, TV viewing levels are lower.
Taking second place among weeklies was Paramount Domestic Television’s “Entertainment Tonight Weekend,” at a 3.4, slipping 6 percent.
Among strips, several staple series hit all-time lows. “Rosie O’Donnell” slid 12 percent to a 2.2, finishing eighth among talk shows, and “People’s Court” fell 16 percent to a 1.6.
Year to year “Rosie” is off 21 percent. As for the show’s key demos, “Rosie” slid four-tenths of a point to a 1.5 among females 18 to 49 and was down half a point among females 25 to 54.
However, “Rosie’s” year-to-year slide was beat by Studios USA’s “Sally Jessy Raphael,” with a 39 percent decline from the same week in 2000 to a 2.0, and by the outgoing “Queen Latifah’s” 29 percent dip to a 1.0.
Leading the genre was King World Productions’ “Oprah” at a 5.4 household rating, on par with last year’s score. The daytime host is off a minor tenth of a rating point among both women 18 to 49 as well as women 25 to 54 with scores of 3.3 and 3.7, respectively.
Among court shows, only two strips showed improvement week to week. “Judge Judy” rose 2 percent to a 5.4 household rating, and Twentieth Television’s “Divorce Court” grew 4 percent to a 2.5.