Syndication Ratings: Talk shows, newsmags see post-Oscar boost

Apr 15, 2002  •  Post A Comment

A week cluttered with post-Oscar news and holidays proved to be successful for two syndicated genres as newsmagazines and talk shows saw ratings spikes, according to Nielsen Media Research.
For the week ending March 31, stripped magazines “Entertainment Tonight,” “Extra” and “Access Hollywood” found double-digit increases on Monday, March 25, with post-Oscar coverage leading to solid ratings gains for the group. Paramount Domestic Television’s “Entertainment Tonight” earned a 6.6 average for the week, up 6 percent from the previous week in households, but scored its highest rating in two years with an 8.2 on Monday.
Warner Bros. Domestic Television’s “Extra” and NBC Enterprises’ “Access Hollywood” tied for second at 2.9, up 7 percent and 12 percent, respectively, from the previous week. On the 25th, however, “Extra” nailed a 3.5 for a 17 percent gain from the previous Monday, while “Access” earned a 3.6 for a 29 percent rise.
King World Productions’ “Inside Edition” finished the week in the other direction, down 9 percent with a 3.1.
Among talk shows, the genre held up well during the week despite the religious celebrations of Passover and Good Friday that typically drive viewers away from their television sets. Six of the seven talk shows gained ground week to week, with King World’s “Oprah” still on top at a 6.2 (a 5 percent jump) and even with the same week last year, while Buena Vista Television’s “Live With Regis and Kelly” grew 11 percent to a 3.9 and second place.
However, the biggest move came from Studios USA Domestic Television’s “Maury.” At a 3.7 for a 6 percent rise for the week and a monstrous 19 percent jump year to year, it is the only talk show to post year-to-year improvement. For the month of March, “Maury” gained viewers in the key females 18 to 49 demographic, moving from a 1.9 rating to a 2.2 and a second-place finish in the category, edging “Live’s” 1.9 score.
Among other veterans, Studios USA’s “Jerry Springer” rose 7 percent for the week in households with a 3.0 (down 14 percent year to year); Paramount’s “Montel Williams” earned a 2.6, up 4 percent for the week but down 16 percent year to year; and Warner Bros.’ “Jenny Jones” rose 5 percent for the week to a 2.0 but is off 13 percent from last year.
Taking the biggest hits in March among women 18 to 49 were “Sally Jessy Raphael’s” slide of 40 percent to a 0.9 average, “Ricki Lake’s” 30 percent dip year to year with a 1.4 and “Springer’s” 26 percent slide to a 1.7.