While overall viewing numbers were down, weekly hours and game shows finished the week strongly, week to week and year to year for the frame ending Oct. 5.
Each of the top five game shows was up for the week, with genre leader “Wheel of Fortune” scoring a 9.0 in households, according to Nielsen Media Research. That number was up 5 percent compared with the previous week and up 6 percent over the same week last year. Sister King World series “Jeopardy!” climbed 8 percent for the week to a 6.9 and is up 1 percent year-to year.
Buena Vista’s “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” continued a strong early start compared with last year, with the strip growing 3 percent for the week to a 3.2 and up 39 percent over the same week in 2002. King World’s “Hollywood Squares” was up 5 percent to a 2.3 but was off 4 percent year to year. Meanwhile, Tribune’s “Family Feud” blossomed 5 percent to a 2.1 rating and is up 24 percent vs. 2002.
Weekly hours also showed strength with each of the top four moving up. “West Wing,” in the show’s second week in syndication, finished in second place among all weekly syndicated series. The Warner Bros. show was up 18 percent in its second week to a 2.6, behind only Paramount stalwart “Entertainment Tonight” weekend edition, which ballooned 10 percent to a 3.2.
Tribune’s action hours “Mutant X” and “Andromeda” both saw gains with their season premieres and scored a tie for third place among weeklies, with each moving up 22 percent to a 2.2 rating. Compared with the same period last year, “Mutant X” is up 5 percent, while “Andromeda” is up 10 percent.
Among rookie strips this week, Telepictures’ “The Sharon Osbourne Show” continued to hold a slim lead over other freshmen, but slipped 7 percent to a 1.4 compared with the previous week. Telepictures’ “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” was unchanged in its fourth week at a 1.3.