Syndication Ratings: Season Lows the Norm as Syndies Settle In for Summer

Syndies slowed way down in the week ended June 4, the first full week following the May sweep, with the majority of shows airing mostly repeats. The week included the long Memorial Day weekend, which serves as a summer kick-off for many, and that also helped push viewership lower.

CBS Television Distribution’s top talker Dr. Phil fell back 18% to a new season-low 2.7 live plus same day household ratings average, according to Nielsen Media Research, as the show went from originals into five days of repeats. Phil still led the talk shows for the 39th week in a row and was the only talker in the top three to increase its ratings over last year at this time with a 4% lift.

Disney-ABC’s Live with Kelly and Ryan was solo in second place for the first time since the week of May 8, dipping 5% to a 2.1 and declining 25% from last year when various guest hosts were paired with Kelly Ripa.

Like Phil, Warner Bros.’ Ellen DeGeneres slumped 18% to a new season-low 1.8, which was 10% below last year.

NBCUniversal’s Maury fell 7% to a new season-low 1.4, tying Debmar-Mercury’s WendyWilliams, which was steady for the week and up 8% from last year. Among women 25-54, however, Maury tied Live and Wendy Williams for second place in daytime’s key demographic at a 0.9, behind leader Dr. Phil at a 1.1.

NBCUniversal’s Steve Harvey, which is prepping to relaunch next season under a different production banner, declined 14% to a new season-low 1.2, down 20% from last year.

NBCU’s conflict talkers Steve Wilkos and JerrySpringer both eroded 8% to a 1.2, tying SteveHarvey. CTD’s RachaelRay remained at its series-low 1.1 for the fourth straight week, losing 15% from last year. Sony Pictures Television’s Dr. Oz slid 9% to a series-low 1.0, off 17% from last year.

Warner Bros.’ Crime Watch Daily with Chris Hansen held steady at a 0.9, tying NBC’s Harry, which fell back 10% in reruns. Crime Watch also boasted talk’s biggest annual increase, growing 13%. Warner Bros.’ The Real registered a 0.8 for the ninth week in a row, while CTD’s TheDoctors declined 13% to a 0.7.

Overnight ratings for the first week of a three-week test on Fox-owned stations of The Jason Show, which Fox also tested last summer, averaged a 0.2 rating/1 share in six metered markets, down 33% from its lead-in and unchanged from its year-ago time period, with 0.1/1 among women 25-54.

Week one of a three-week trial for The Q in eight metered markets averaged a 0.6/2, down 33% from its lead-in and 25% from its June 2016 time period average, with a 0.5/3 in the key demo.

Related: Fox TV Stations Prep for Full Summer of Programming

Elsewhere in daytime, CTD’s Judge Judy dominated with a 6.2, off 10% from the prior week with the show in reruns on four out of five days.

CTD’s Hot Bench aired a full week of repeats and backtracked 9% to a 2.1, but still tied Live as daytime’s third-highest show behind only Judy and Phil.

Warner Bros.’ People’s Court sagged 6% to a 1.5. Warner Bros.’ JudgeMathis softened 8% to a new season-low 1.1. Twentieth’s Divorce Court was flat at a 0.9. Trifecta’s Judge Faith faded 13% to a 0.7.

In access, Debmar-Mercury’s FamilyFeud inched up 2% to a 6.3, beating Judy to lead all of syndication for the first time since the week of March 20, although it was still down 13% from last year.

CTD’s Wheel of Fortune faded 9% for the week and 10% from last year to a new season-low 5.3, to tie CTD’s Jeopardy!, which retreated 5% to match its season low.

Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire forfeited 6% to a season-low 1.5, while Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game remained at its season-low 1.1 for a third straight week.

Elsewhere, Disney-ABC’s RightThisMinute lost 8% to a season-low 1.2.

In access, CTD’s magazine leader Entertainment Tonight slipped 7% to a new season-low 2.7. CTD’s InsideEdition also lost 7% to a new season-low 2.5. Warner Bros.’ TMZ dropped 7% to  1.4. NBCU’s AccessHollywood shrank 8% for the week and 20% from last year to a 1.2, tying its season low. Warner Bros.’ Extra eased 8% to a 1.1.

CTD’s The Insider, which will end after this season, relinquished 10% to a 0.9. Twentieth’s Dish Nation stayed at its season low 0.7 for the seventh straight week, while Trifecta’s Celebrity Page posted its usual 0.3 for the 22nd straight week.

Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory inched up 2% to lead the off-net sitcoms at a 4.7. Twentieth’s ModernFamily fell 4% to a 2.5. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men remained at its series-low 2.1 for a second straight week. Twentieth’s FamilyGuy gained 6% to a 1.9. Warner Bros.’ Mike & Molly moved down 6% to a 1.6, tying Twentieth’s rookie Last Man Standing, which stood pat for a fourth consecutive week. Warner Bros.’ 2 Broke Girls stayed at a 1.4. Twentieth’s The Cleveland Show skidded 8% to a 1.2, tying SPT’s Seinfeld, which also slipped 8%. Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother matched its series-low 1.1 with a decline of 8%, tying Twentieth’s King of the Hill, which was flat.

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.