Syndication Ratings: Olympics can’t stop rise of `Elimidate’

Mar 4, 2002  •  Post A Comment

The Olympics may have dampened an important sweeps race for syndicated product, with strips in early fringe and access particularly hit hard from the unusual competition, according to Nielsen Media Research, for the week ending Feb. 17. But metered market results for the entire sweeps period elevated frowns-especially within the rookie crop, where half of the first-run, noncanceled series have either matched or bumped up year-ago ratings.
Although most shows slipped for the week, the only rookie to shine was Telepictures Distribution’s “Elimidate,” which improved its weekly scores with a 1.7 rating, up 6 percent for the week and equaling its season high. The series has now taken over third place in the rookie race in national household numbers and, for the first time, tied for first place in the genre with “Blind Date,” which slid 11 percent for the week.
The freshman series topped another list by increasing its time-period performance the most over year-ago numbers compared with other rookies. For the February book, “Elimidate” has earned a 1.6 metered market household rating with a 4 share, up 14 percent vs. its year-ago time-period average. That rating puts the show in fourth place among rookies.
First place on the rookie list goes to Twentieth Television’s “Texas Justice” with a 2.1 household score and 6 share, boosting the year-to-year time-period average by 11 percent during the sweep.
Tying “Texas Justice” in ratings but off a share point is NBC Enterprises’ “Weakest Link,” which also took home a 2.1 rating but finished with a 5 share in households. The figure marks a 22 percent drop from last year’s numbers.
NBC Enterprises also took third place in the metered-market race with talk show “The Other Half.” The strip had been mentioned as a candidate for cancellation, but with a 1.7 rating, 6 share and a time-period boost of 13 percent vs. 2001 numbers, several positive points remain for the show.
Fifth place in metered market ratings went to Studios USA Domestic Television’s “Crossing Over” with a 1.5 rating/4 share and a 6 percent decline in its time periods a year ago.
The troubled “Ananda Lewis Show” finished the sweeps with a 1.4 rating/5 share to drop the time period the most of any rookie show on the list with a 26 percent slide for distributor King World Productions.
Columbia TriStar Domestic Television’s “Shipmates” was the only strip to perfectly match 2001 numbers, scoring a 1.2 rating/4 share for its metered market stations.