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Season Highs for First-Run Series

Nov 30, 2006  •  Post A Comment

From “Wheel” to “Access” to “Alex,” an array of series from each of the first-run genres all climbed to new season highs for the second full week of the sweep, even while most of the syndicated strips held even or dipped slightly for the week ending Nov. 19.

“Geraldo at Large” scored big off the O.J. Simpson controversies, building a 13 percent jump week-to-week to a new all-time high for the series. The strip not only scored a best-ever 1.7 average audience rating but also earned double-digit gains in every one of the key female demographics. Newsmagazines also saw NBC Universal’s “Access Hollywood” rise 8 percent to a 2.8 in both week-to-week and year-to-year comparisons, good for its best week since Jan. 30. The series also earned gains in all of the key female demos.

Among game shows, King World’s duo of “Wheel of Fortune” and “Jeopardy” toasted the November book with themed weeks as both series enjoyed 6 percent increases over the same week a year ago. “Wheel” rose 3 percent to a season-best 9.0 rating and earning its highest rating since March with a “Family Week” theme shot in Dallas. Meanwhile, “Jeopardy!” turned to its proven “Celebrity Jeopardy!” format to pull a 3 percent jump for the week to a season-best 7.2.

The talk-show genre saw only one series gain ground as NBC Universal’s “Martha” rose 7 percent for the week to a new season high of 1.5. The strip is also up a solid 20 percent among women 18-34.

Two series in the court-show ranks hit new highs as well. Warners’ “Judge Mathis” grew 14 percent to a 2.6 score while Twentieth’s “Judge Alex” rose 5 percent week-to-week to a 2.1.