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Syndication Ratings: 'Judge Judy' Celebrates 900 Weeks at Number One

CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy celebrated the holiday by hitting a milestone 900 straight weeks as the top court show in the week ended Dec. 22. Meanwhile, most of syndication was lower heading into Christmas and New Year’s.

Judge Judy scored a 7.1 live plus same day household ratings average for the week, according to Nielsen Media Research, off 5% from the prior week but still up 6% from last year at this time. Judy led all of syndication for the 18th week in a row, including ties, and had a higher rating than the next four court shows combined.

In second place, Warner Bros.’ People’s Court and Twentieth’s Divorce Court both were flat at a 1.7. Twentieth’s Judge Alex weakened 6% to a 1.6, tying Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis, which was unchanged. MGM’s rookie Paternity Court was flat at a 0.9.

Most of the talk shows were in repeats and flat or lower in the pre-holiday week. Of the 17 daytime talkers, the only shows to improve were NBCU’s Jerry Springer, which gained 8% to a 1.3, and NBCU’s Trisha, which grew 20% — or one-tenth of a ratings point — to a 0.6. Both shows also hit series highs.

Warner Bros.’ Ellen ended up in first place for the first time this season, although it sank 6% from the prior week to a 3.0. CTD’s Dr. Phil, the season-to-date talk leader, fell 15% to a 2.8, tying Disney/ABC’s Live with Kelly and Michael, which dipped 10%. NBCU’s Maury, in third place, was flat at a 2.1. SPT’s Dr. Oz, which tends to get a New Year’s bump due to its emphasis on health, dropped 10% to a 1.9 in the week before Christmas.

NBCU’s Steve Harvey was flat at a 1.8, but improved 29% from last year, the most of any talker. Disney/ABC’s Katie, which will end its two-year run after this season, was unchanged at a 1.7. NBCU’s Steve Wilkos and CTD’s Rachael Ray held steady at a 1.4. Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams softened 7% for the week to a 1.3. CTD’s The Doctors declined 15% to a 1.1, while much further back, Meredith’s The Better Show was unchanged at a 0.2.

Among the newcomers, SPT’s Queen Latifah slipped 9% to a 1.0. Warner Bros.’ Bethenny eased 11% to a 0.8 in households, but tied Latifah in women 25-54 at a 0.6. Further back, CTD’s The Test was flat at a 0.6, while in late night CTD’s Arsenio Hall was steady at a 0.7.

Elsewhere, none of the access shows were up.

CTD’s Wheel of Fortune skidded 5% from the prior week to a 7.0. CTD’s Jeopardy! lost 4% to a 6.4. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud fell 2% to a 5.2. Disney/ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire held steady at 2.1.

Among the magazines, CTD’s leader Entertainment Tonight eased 8% from the prior session to a 3.6. In second place, CTD’s Inside Edition dipped 3% to a 3.0. Warner Bros.’ TMZ and NBCU’s Access Hollywood each were unchanged at a 1.9 and 1.8, respectively. Warner Bros.' Extra gave back 6% from its season high to a 1.6. Extra and Access Hollywood were the only shows to improve year to year, growing 7% and 6%, respectively. CTD’s omg! Insider — which returned to its former name, The Insider, on Monday, Jan. 6 —yielded 7% from the prior week to a 1.4.

MGM’s RightThis Minute was flat at a 1.1. Twentieth’s sophomore Dish Nation, renewed for a third season, faded 10% to a 0.9. Trifecta’s America Now and rookie OK! TV were both unchanged at a 0.3 and 0.2, respectively.

In off-net syndication, Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory continued to lead, recovering 2% from the prior week to a 6.4. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men remained at a 3.9. Twentieth’s Family Guy advanced 11% to a 3.1. Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother stayed at a 2.1. SPT’s Seinfeld spiked 6% to a 1.9. Warner Bros.’ Friends was flat at a 1.8 and Twentieth’s King of the Hill declined 6% to a 1.7.

Among the rookie sitcoms, Twentieth’s Modern Family climbed 9% from the prior week to a 5.1, matching its series high in syndication. Twentieth’s animated The Cleveland Show added 5% to a 2.1. Warner Bros.’ The Middle was flat at a 1.4, while SPT’s Community, which returned to NBC in primetime on Jan. 2, was steady at a 0.4 in households and jumped 50% among adults 18-49 and adults 18-34.