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Syndication Ratings: Veteran talk shows post across-the-board gains

Nov 25, 2002  •  Post A Comment

Entering the thick of the November book, a number of syndicated series continued to reach new highs for the season, especially within the weekend and talk ranks, according to Nielsen Media Research data for the week ending Nov. 10.
Every veteran talk show received a ratings boost, topped by King World’s “Oprah,” which rose 5 percent to a season high of 6.2. “Oprah” beat hit rookie spinoff “Dr. Phil,” which grew 4 percent to a 4.4 score. Buena Vista’s “Live with Regis and Kelly” took a solid third place with a 3 percent jolt to a 3.6, while Universal’s “Maury” and “Jerry Springer” landed in fourth and fifth, rising 3 percent and 8 percent, respectively, to Nielsen numbers of 3.2 and 2.7.
Paramount’s long-running “Montel” was up 4 percent to a 2.6 rating, followed by a tie between Warner Bros.’ “Jenny Jones” and Sony’s “Ricki Lake,” both up 7 percent to 1.6. Meanwhile, “Crossing Over With John Edward” grew 8 percent to a 1.3.
Rookie talk shows weren’t as fortunate even though two freshman strips managed to earn all-time highs: Tribune’s “Beyond With James Van Praagh” hit a 1.1 (up 10 percent) and Paramount’s reality-oriented “Life Moments,” was up 11 percent to a 1.0.
As for the rest of the pack, NBC’s “John Walsh” slid 7 percent from last week’s high to a 1.3, while Telepictures’ “Caroline” and Twentieth’s “Rob Nelson” were even for the week at 1.0.
Warner Bros.’ off-net “Will & Grace” earned a season high with a 2 percent jump to a 4.5, and its “Celebrity Justice” was even at a 1.2, while Buena Vista’s “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” was off 10 percent to a 2.7, and Sony’s “Pyramid” inched up to a 1.8.
Among the weekly veterans, a number of series turned in double-digit percentage increases to score season bests, led by Paramount’s weekend version of “Entertainment Tonight,” which rose 18 percent to a 4.0 with an episode on Hollywood plastic surgery.
MGM led the action-hour ranks, with “Stargate SG-1” and “She Spies” both reaching new peaks, as “Stargate” rose 17 percent to a 2.7, while “She Spies” jumped 33 percent to a 2.4. Tribune’s “Mutant X” grew 5 percent to a 2.2, while “Andromeda” and rookie “Adventure Inc.” each pulled a 2.0. Western’s freshman hour “Starhunter” continued to find audiences, rising 33 percent to a 0.8.
For weekly off-net shows, Twentieth’s “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” was unchanged at a 2.4 but led the pack, edging out Warner Bros.’ “ER” and Twentieth’s “The X-Files” at 2.3. MGM’s rookie “Providence’s” 13 percent rise to a 1.7 was a new high.
NBC’s weekly talk show “The Chris Matthews Show” jumped 25 percent to a earn its best score ever at a 1.5.