Syndication Ratings: Post-Holidays, Syndies Catch Fire

With the holidays behind them and awards season ahead, almost all of syndication was sharply up in the week ended Jan. 11.

All of the magazine shows matched or exceeded their season highs. CBS Television Distribution’s Entertainment Tonight jumped 26% to a new season high 3.9 live plus same day household average, according to Nielsen Media Research. Over the previous two weeks, the magazines have all seen increases, with ET seeing the biggest two-week gain in the category at 56%.

CTD’s Inside Edition grew 21% from the prior week to a season high 3.4. Warner Bros.’ TMZ added 22% to a new season high 2.2. NBCUniversal’s Access Hollywood shot up 27% for the week and had the second-biggest two-week gain in the genre, jumping 46% to a 1.9, matching its season best. Warner Bros.’ Extra surged 21% to a 1.7, also tying its season best. CTD’s The Insider grew 17% to a 1.4, matching its season high.

Further down the magazine rack, Twentieth’s Dish Nation and Trifecta’s OK! TV also tied their season highs, with Dish up 22% to a 1.1 and OK! TV up 50% from a 0.2 to a 0.3.

The game shows also climbed, with three out of four hitting new season highs.

CTD’s leader Wheel of Fortune accelerated 25% to a new season-best 8.0, while CTD’s Jeopardy! jumped 23% to a 7.6. The pair finished first and second in overall syndication. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud picked up 18% to also hit a new series high 6.7. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire was flat at a 1.8.

Elsewhere, MGM’s video variety show RightThisMinute was up 13% to a 1.7.

In daytime, CTD’s Hot Bench, this season’s rookie first-run leader, gained 12% to hit a new series high 1.9. Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game added 8% to a 1.3. NBCU’s Meredith Vieira, which has been renewed for season two in 80% of the country, climbed 9% to a 1.2. Warner Bros.’ The Real, which had dropped to its season low in the prior week, rebounded 22% in households and landed at a fourth place 1.1.

Among women 25-54, The Real led the pack with a 0.9, followed by Hot Bench and Celebrity Name Game, which were tied at a 0.8. Trifecta’s Judge Faith was the only rookie to decline, dropping 13% to a 0.7 in households.

Disney-ABC’s Live with Kelly and Michael finished first for the third consecutive week, gaining 6% from the prior week to a 3.3 and tying its best Nielsen score of the season. Live managed to hold off Dr. Phil, which rebounded 33% to a 3.2 after spending the past two weeks in reruns. Among women 25-54, Phil and Live tied at a 1.6.

Warner Bros.’ Ellen climbed 22% to a third place 2.8.

NBCU’s Maury held steady at a 2.0, while NBCU’s Steve Harvey rounded out the top five with a 6% gain to a 1.9. Harvey also scored its best day ever in the metered markets on January 16, with Harvey’s annual birthday show ballooning 57% from its lead-ins and 15% from year-ago time periods to a 2.2 rating/6 share, while setting series highs in Los Angeles, Chicago and Cleveland.

Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams, back in originals, climbed 38% to a 1.8 for sixth place, equaling its previous season high. SPT’s Dr. Oz spiked 7% to a 1.5, that show’s second-highest rating of the season. NBCU’s Jerry Springer was steady at its season-high 1.4, tying CTD’s Rachael Ray and NBCU’s Steve Wilkos, each of which dipped 7% to a 1.4. CTD’s The Doctors held firm at a 1.1. SPT’s soon-to-depart Queen Latifah was unchanged at a 1.0, while Meredith’s The Better Show, which will end its eight-year run after this season, remained at a 0.1.

CTD’s Judge Judy jumped 17% to a 7.3 to lead the court shows, but came in third in overall syndication. Hot Bench, which was created by Judge Judy Sheindlin, moved into second place among the courts for the first time.

Warner Bros.’ People’s Court grew 6% to a 1.8. Twentieth’s Divorce Court was flat at a 1.6. Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis tacked on 7% to a 1.5, while MGM’s sophomore Lauren Lake’s Paternity Court trailed at a 1.1, declining 8%.

Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory gained 18% from the prior week to lead the off-net sitcoms with a season high 6.5. Twentieth’s Modern Family climbed 16% to a new season high 4.4. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men motored ahead 14% to a 3.2. Warner Bros.’ rookie Mike & Molly moved up 13% to a new season high 2.6, and fourth place for the first time. Twentieth’s Family Guy grew 9% to a 2.5. Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother was unchanged at a 2.3. SPT’s Seinfeld hit a new season high 2.2, up 22%. Warner Bros.’ The Middle fell back to earth after jumping more than 100% in the prior session, declining 10% to a 1.9 and tying Twentieth’s The Cleveland Show, which spiked 12%. Twentieth’s King of the Hill rose 13% to a 1.7.

Paige Albiniak

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for more than 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for The Global Entertainment Marketing Academy of Arts & Sciences (G.E.M.A.). 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.