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‘Hot Bench’ Heats Up Early in Season 2

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CBS Television Distribution’s Hot Bench, last season’s surprise break-out, continues to climb in season 2, rising to a series-high 2.2 live-plus-same-day average household rating in the week ending Oct. 18, according to Nielsen Media Research.

That solidifies Hot Bench as syndication’s second highest-rated court show, behind CTD’s Judge Judy, which led all of syndication for the 17th-straight week, with a 6.9.

Hot Bench—which was created by Judge Judy Sheindlin—gained 5% for the week and 47% from last year at this time, the biggest year-to-year increase of any strip in syndication, largely based on upgrades last spring to CBS owned stations in top markets.

It’s also by far the highest-rated freshman or sophomore show in syndication. Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game is the next highest at a 1.1 season-to-date household average.