Syndication Ratings: NCAA Championship Hangs Over Access Shows

The NCAA's nail-biting men's basketball final aired across TNT, TBS and truTV in the week ending April 10, presenting stronger than usual competition for shows in access time periods on Monday, April 4.

All of the top-three game shows fell slightly compared to the prior week. CBS Television Distribution’s Wheel of Fortune dipped 1% to a 6.6 live plus same day household ratings average, according to Nielsen Media Research. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud, which had been first or tied for first for the past three weeks, was off 4% to a second-place 6.4. CTD’s Jeopardy! weakened 3% to a 6.1. 

Further back, Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game and Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire both were unchanged at a 1.4 and 1.3, respectively. However, year to year, Name Game gained 8% while Millionaire lost 24%. Wheel dipped 3% compared to last year, Feud added 7% and Jeopardy! declined 9%. Feud also led all of syndication among women 25-54 at a 3.1.

MGM’s viral video show RightThisMinute was flat at a 1.2, and down 14% compared to last year.

Magazines also were unable to gain momentum. CTD’s Entertainment Tonight dipped 3% to a 3.1. CTD’s Inside Edition, Warner Bros.’ TMZ, NBCUniversal’s Access Hollywood and Warner Bros.’ Extra all were steady at a 2.9, 1.8, 1.6 and 1.4, respectively. CTD’s The Insider relinquished 8% to a 1.1.

Twentieth’s Dish Nation and Trifecta’s Celebrity Page, rebranded from OK! TV, remained at a 1.0 and 0.3, respectively.

CTD’s Dr. Phil led the talkers with a steady 3.1. Disney-ABC’s Live with Kelly and Michael — soon to be without Michael Strahan, who is decamping for ABC's Good Morning America — gained 3% to nip at Phil’s heels with a 3.0, that show’s highest rating since the week of Feb. 29. Among daytime’s key demographic women 25-54, Live grew 8% to a 1.4 to tie Phil, which gave back 7%, for the lead. In the prior week, Phil had spiked 25% in the demo.

Warner Bros.’ Ellen DeGeneres recovered 14% from its season low in the prior week to a 2.4. NBCU’s Steve Harvey eased 5% to a 1.8. NBCU’s Maury held steady at a 1.7, rounding out the top five. 

Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams showed talk’s sharpest increases, adding 13% for both the week and year to a 1.5.

CTD’s Rachael Ray, NBCU’s Steve Wilkos, SPT’s Dr. Oz, NBCU’s Jerry Springer and CTD’s The Doctors all were unchanged at a 1.4, 1.4, 1.4, 1.2 and 1.0, respectively. 

Warner Bros.’ The Real rebounded 13% to a 0.9, moving ahead of NBCU’s out-of-production Meredith Vieira, which slumped 11% to a 0.8. The Real also rose 17% to a 0.7 among women 25-54. 

Warner Bros.’ rookie Crime Watch Daily was steady at a 1.0. Disney-ABC’s FABLife and NBCU’s Crazy Talk, neither of which will return for season two, remained at a 0.8 and 0.5, respectively.

CTD’s Judge Judy again led all of syndication’s strips at a steady 7.0, and added 8% from last year, even though the show was mostly in repeats.

CTD’s Hot Bench also was mostly in reruns and dipped 4% to a 2.5, still good enough to increase 39% from last year and rank fourth in daytime behind only Judy, Phil and Live.

Warner Bros.’ People’s Court sagged 6% to a 1.7. Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis was flat at a 1.5. Twentieth’s Divorce Court climbed 8% to a 1.3. Trifecta’s Judge Faith was flat at a 0.9.

Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory dipped 2% to a 5.7 to lead the off-net sitcoms. Twentieth’s Modern Family finished 3% higher at a 3.3. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men moved up 4% to a 2.8. Twentieth’s Family Guy gained 10% to a 2.3. Warner Bros.’ Mike & Molly retreated 5% to a 2.0, tying Warner Bros.’ 2 Broke Girls, which remained at a 2.0. SPT’s Seinfeld and Twentieth’s The Cleveland Show were unchanged at a 1.9 and 1.7, respectively. Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother welcomed a 7% spike to a 1.6, while Twentieth’s King of the Hill was flat at a 1.4. 

Paige Albiniak

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.