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Syndication Ratings: 'Judge Judy,' Top Talkers Clean Up in November Sweep

First-run shone in this year’s November sweep, which ran from Oct. 31 through Nov. 27, while off-net sitcoms saw steep declines across the board.

At the top of the November sweep chart, CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy grew 4% over last year to a 7.5 live plus same day national household average, according to Nielsen Media Research, marking that show’s best November sweep score in its 18 years on the air.

Among the other court rooms, Warner Bros.’ People’s Court dropped 5% since last November to a 1.8. Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis was flat at a 1.6, tying Twentieth’s Judge Alex and Divorce Court, each of which were up 23% year to year. Twentieth’s Divorce Court also was just renewed through 2014-15. MGM’s rookie Paternity Court trailed at a 1.0.

Elsewhere in daytime, CTD's Dr. Phil continued to lead the talkers, winning its sixth straight sweep with a 3.4, up 6% from last November. Warner Bros.’ Ellen held on for second place, despite a late rush from Disney/ABC’s Live with Kelly and Michael. Ellen posted a 3.0, up 15% from last year, with Live right behind at a 2.9 after surging to a 3.1 in the sweep’s final week, that show’s highest rating since the week that Regis Philbin departed the show in November 2011. Live also was up 7% from last November.

Sony Pictures Television’s Dr. Oz dipped 8% to a 2.2, but moved into sole possession of fourth place, breaking last year’s tie with NBCUniversal’s Maury, which was off 13% to a 2.1 in households, but remained number one among women 18-34 with a 1.3.

NBCUniversal’s Steve Harvey climbed 38% over last year to a 1.8 household average, after clocking a series-high 1.9 in the sweep’s final week. Disney/ABC’s Katie, in seventh place, dropped 11% from last November to a 1.7. In the final week of the sweep, Katie gained 13% from the prior week among women 25-54 to a 0.9, and improved 6% in households to a 1.8, equalling the show’s second-highest rating of the season.

CTD’s Rachael Ray retreated 6% to a 1.5, but finished the sweep with a flourish, hitting a new season-high 1.7 in the final week. NBCU’s Steve Wilkos slipped 7% to a 1.4, tying Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams, which rose 40% from last November to a 1.4 sweep average after hitting a new series-high 1.6 in the sweep’s final week.

NBCU’s Jerry Springer yielded 13% to a 1.3. CTD’s The Doctors relinquished 14% to a 1.2 after losing some key time periods this season, but finished the sweep strong, adding 33% among women 25-54 to a 0.8 and hitting a new season-high 1.3 in households.

NBCU’s Trisha held steady at a 0.5, while Meredith’s The Better Show was unchanged at a 0.2.

Among the rookies, SPT’s Queen Latifah posted a 1.1 for its first November sweep. Warner Bros.’ Bethenny notched a 0.9 in households, and led the field among daytime’s key demographic of women 25-54 with a 0.7. In the last week of the sweep, Bethenny was the youngest-skewing talk show in syndication with a median age of 47.7. CTD’s The Test chalked up a 0.6. In late-night, CTD’s Arsenio Hall earned a 0.7 in its initial sweep.

Among shows not yet nationally cleared, NBCU’s Access Hollywood Live averaged a 0.7 rating/3 share in its 15 metered markets, holding steady with year-ago time periods. On WNBC New York and KNBC Los Angeles, Access Hollywood Live jumped 40% and 29% from last year, respectively.

CTD’s Entertainment Tonight posted a 3.9, even with last November, and topping the category for the 93rd straight sweep, dating back to 1990.

CTD’s Inside Edition lost 3% to a 3.0. Warner Bros.’ TMZ was flat at a 1.9. NBCU’s Access Hollywood strengthened 6% to a 1.8. Warner Bros.' Extra scored the largest increase among the top-five magazines, growing 13% from last year to a 1.7. CTD’s omg! Insider held steady at a 1.5.

Among the newer entertainment magazines, MGM’s RightThisMinute registered a 1.1 in its first sweep as a nationally rated strip. Twentieth’s sophomore Dish Nation averaged a 0.9, up 13% from last year. Trifecta’s America Now and rookie OK! TV averaged a 0.3 and a 0.2, respectively, in their first nationally rated sweeps.

On the game show front, Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud, with hot host Steve Harvey, was the biggest winner, gaining 13% from last year to a 5.2 sweep average.

CTD’s game leader, Wheel of Fortune, picked up 4% to a 7.4. CTD’s Jeopardy! inched up 3% to a 6.5. Disney/ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire, with new host Cedric the Entertainer, declined 9% to a 2.1, but was up in the final week, gaining 5% to a match its season high 2.2.

In off-net syndication, ratings for aging sitcoms were no laughing matter. Warner Bros.’ leader The Big Bang Theory declined 15% from last November to a 6.3. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men deteriorated 30% to a 3.7. Twentieth’s Family Guy eroded 21% to a 3.0. Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother lost 19% to a 2.1. Twentieth’s King of the Hill, in its 13th season, dropped 14% to a 1.8, tying Warner Bros.’ Friends, which faded 10% in its sixteenth season. SPT’s Seinfeld sank 23% to 1.7 in season 19. CTD’s Everybody Loves Raymond plunged 63% to a 0.7 in its 13th season.

Among the rookie off-net sitcoms, Twentieth’s Modern Family completed its first sweep at a 4.7. Twentieth’s animated Cleveland Show clocked a 2.0. Warner Bros.’ The Middle wrapped at a 1.5, while SPT’s Community, which does not include its cable run in its national ratings like most other off-net sitcoms, remained at a 0.4.