With Jennings Back, ‘Jeopardy!’ Sees Ratings Rise

Nov 10, 2004  •  Post A Comment

Despite World Series pre-emptions and increased cable news viewership from the presidential election, King World’s “Jeopardy!” gained during the week of Oct. 25-31, thanks to the return of uber-champion Ken Jennings.

Off the previous week because of a special tournament, the returning Mr. Jennings helped drive the game show’s ratings up 26 percent to a new season household ratings high of 8.7, according to Nielsen Media Research.

That wasn’t enough to take the top spot for the week from King World’s “Wheel of Fortune,” which was up 6 percent from the previous week to an 8.9. Coming in third was fellow King World talk program “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” up 1 percent to a 7.6. “Oprah,” which has an average household season-to-date number of 7.5, is having its highest ratings since 1996.

Paramount’s “The Insider” remained the No. 1 rookie of the week with a 2.4, down 8 percent from last week’s series high. Next up was NBC Universal’s “The Jane Pauley Show,” up 7 percent to a 1.6, matching its series high. Buena Vista’s “The Tony Danza Show” was down 8 percent to a 1.2, Twentieth Television’s “Ambush Makeover” was unchanged with a 1.1, Telepictures’ “Larry Elder” was down 11 percent to an 0.8, Sony’s “Pat Croce: Moving In” was up 17 percent to an 0.7 and Sony’s “Life & Style” was unchanged at an 0.5.

Among new off-nets, the weekend run of King World’s “CSI” was down 4 percent to a 5.1. Twentieth Television’s “Malcolm in the Middle” was up 3 percent, hitting a new syndicated high of 3.1. NBC Universal’s “Fear Factor” was unchanged with a 1.9, while Twentieth’s “Yes, Dear” was down 6 percent to a 1.6. Paramount’s “Girlfriends” was also down 6 percent, to a 1.5. King World’s “Everybody Loves Raymond” remained the highest-rated off-net strip for the week with a 6.6, followed by Sony’s “Seinfeld” and Warner Bros.’ “Friends,” both tied with a 5.5.