Syndie Ratings Slump Amid Religious Holidays, March Madness

Apr 21, 2009  •  Post A Comment

Coming off a rare March sweeps ratings period, a majority of first-run syndication took a tumble with only five shows posting week-to-week improvements for the week ending April 12.
The entire week was rough for syndicated programs, as Passover and Good Friday tended to interrupt viewing patterns. Contributing to the decline, CBS affiliates postponed programming on Monday, April 6 for the NCAA men’s basketball championship game.
NBC Universal Television Distribution’s “The Martha Stewart Show” posted the biggest upswing, with a 14% increase to a 0.8 household rating. NBC’s “The Jerry Springer Show” (up 9%, 1.2) and “Maury” (up 6%, 1.8), Disney-ABC’s “Live with Regis and Kelly” (up 4%, 2.7), and Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution’s “The Tyra Banks Show” (up 9%, 1.2) all increased from the previous week.
“Tyra” tied its own season-high rating, thanks in part to an interview with Levi Johnston, the former fiancé of Bristol Palin, who is the daughter of former vice-presidential Republican candidate Sarah Palin.
The rest of the talk-show genre held steady or fell in the ratings, with the largest decline from the group (and all of first-run syndication) coming from CBS Television Distribution’s “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” off 21% to a 4.6.
In the first-run rookie group, CBS’ “The Doctors” posted its 12th straight first-place finish, dipping 5% to a 1.8. NBC Universal’s “Deal or No Deal” finished closely behind with a 6% drop to a 1.6.
In court shows, the entire field showed slight declines from the previous week with the exception of Twentieth Television’s “Divorce Court,” which stayed flat with a 1.3.
CBS’ “Wheel of Fortune” and “Jeopardy” were both off 8%, posting a 6.6 and a 5.6 rating, respectively. Disney-ABC’s “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” fell by 4% to a 2.3, while Debmar-Mercury’s “Family Feud” held tight at a 1.4.
In the entertainment newsmagazine genre, CBS’ “Entertainment Tonight” led the way, with a 3.9, off 5%. “Inside Edition” and Warner Bros. “TMZ” were flat at a 2.9 and a 2.2, respectively.
NBC Universal’s “Access Hollywood” came in fourth, off 5% to a 2.0, followed by CBS’ “The Insider,” which dipped 6% to a 1.7.
Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution’s “Extra” declined 11% to a 1.6.


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