Syndication Ratings: Rookie strips climbing

Feb 25, 2002  •  Post A Comment

The first week of sweeps saw audiences going out of their way to find off-network and relationship fare as rookies in both genres hit all-time highs, while veterans found their own best scores of the season, according to Nielsen Media Research.
The February book, for the week ending Feb. 10, found two rookies gloating since King World Productions’ “Everybody Loves Raymond” and Twentieth Television’s “King of the Hill” continued climbing the ratings ladder. The two series took third and fourth place, respectively, in their genre. “Raymond” averaged a 6.4 household rating, up 5 percent for the week and 52 percent from its debut in syndication. “King” showed its own muscle, finishing the week in fourth place for the first time ever, edging out Paramount Domestic Television’s “Frasier” with a 3.7, marking the strip’s fourth record high in five weeks. The series was up 3 percent for the week and 48 percent from its debut. “Frasier” slipped 3 percent for the week to a 3.6.
The two leaders remain Warner Bros. Domestic Television’s “Friends” at a 7.9 and Columbia TriStar Domestic Television’s “Seinfeld” at a 7.3, season highs for both shows. Columbia’s “Just Shoot Me” was even at a 2.8, Warner Bros.’ “The Drew Carey Show” grew 4 percent to a 2.5, and Carsey-Werner Distribution’s “3rd Rock From the Sun” was flat at a 2.0.
Among first-run relationship series, four of the six strips finished up for the week, including three rookies, with Telepictures Distribution’s “Elimidate” and Universal Television’s “Fifth Wheel” tying with a 7 percent rise to a 1.6 household rating. Meanwhile, Columbia’s “Shipmates” equaled its best rating ever with a 1.2, up 9 percent for the week.
The only rookie not to show growth was Paramount’s “Rendez-View” at a 1.0. As previously reported by EM, the strip needs a miracle to continue for another season.
Among the veterans, “Blind Date” continued to lead the charge, despite a 5 percent dip in ratings to a 1.9, while Telepictures’ “Change of Heart” scored the best ratings spike of any major series in syndication with a 23 percent jump to a 1.6, tying its best numbers this season.