Syndication Ratings: 'Sherri' Takes Early Rookie Lead

Sherri Shepherd stars in her own talk show produced and distributed by Debmar-Mercury.
Sherri Shepherd stars in her own talk show produced and distributed by Debmar-Mercury. (Image credit: Debmar-Mercury/'Sherri')

Sherri Shepherd was the leading talk rookie in week two of the new syndication season with a steady 0.7 live plus same day national household rating, according to Nielsen.

Warner Bros.’ fellow rookie talker Jennifer Hudson fell back 14%, or one-tenth of a ratings point, to a 0.6 in the week ended Sept. 25. Jennifer Hudson took over the time periods of Debmar-Mercury’s canceled Nick Cannon on many Fox-owned stations and outperformed that show’s second week, which averaged a 0.4 last year, by 50%.

Similarly, Debmar-Mercury’s Sherri replaced Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams on many Fox stations in top markets. Last year at this time, Wendy Williams was averaging a 0.8 with repeats as the show’s season premiere was pushed off a month with the host out on medical leave. Williams never returned, resulting in the show’s cancellation and the launching of Sherri, after Shepherd saw success guest-hosting Wendy.

This season’s third rookie talker – NBCUniversal’s Karamo starring Karamo Brown of Netflix’s Queer Eye – made its debut on the national chart at a 0.3.

Also: Old Hands Bring New Stars to Syndication

Some syndies were penalized during the week by having to air against coverage of Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral on Sept. 19.

Among the talk veterans, Disney’s Live with Kelly and Ryan rose 7% to a 1.5 to remain the talk leader for the 18th week in a row, including eight ties with CBS Media Ventures’ Dr. Phil. Among syndication’s key demographic of women 25-54, Live led at a 0.6 followed by Dr. Phil at a 0.4.

Dr. Phil grew 8% to a 1.4 to also take second place in households.

NBCUniversal’s Kelly Clarkson and CBS’ Drew Barrymore, which were both up sharply in the prior week with their season premieres, each held steady at a 0.9 and 0.8, respectively. Drew Barrymore, which is now produced as a half-hour show that stations can run as a one-hour block or double-run in different time periods, is benefitting from having its ratings cumed across two airings.

Disney’s Tamron Hall was steady at a 0.7. NBCU’s Steve Wilkos was stable at a 0.6 for the 16th straight week, remaining tied with CBS’ Rachael Ray, which held steady for an eighth consecutive week. Reruns of NBCU’s Maury slumped 33% to a 0.4. NBCU’s Jerry Springer talk-court combo continued at a 0.3.

Also: Syndication Ratings: 'Jennifer Hudson,' 'Sherri' Hold Their Own in National Debut

CBS' Jeopardy! retook the game and syndication lead for the second straight week, inching up 2% to a 5.0  Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud stayed at a 4.8 to take second place in both categories. CBS’ Wheel of Fortune ticked up 2% to a 4.6. Fox’s You Bet Your Life with host Jay Leno lost 13% to a 0.7, tying Fox’s 25 Words or Less, starring and executive produced by Meredith Vieira, which stayed put for a 13th consecutive week.

CBS’ new game show entry Pictionary, starring Jerry O’Connell, added 25% in its second week to a 0.5. Entertainment Studios’ Funny You Should Ask attained a 0.3 for a third straight week.

CBS’ Inside Edition set the magazine pace, moving ahead 5% to a 2.2. CBS’ Entertainment Tonight, NBCU’s Access Hollywood and Fox’s TMZ all were in line with the prior week, which included the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards, at a 2.0, 0.8 and 0.6, respectively. Warner Bros.’ Extra tallied a 20% increase to a 0.6, tying TMZ. Fox’s Dish Nation netted a 0.2 for the 25th straight week.

Evergreen episodes of CBS’ Judge Judy led the courts, despite dipping 2% to a 4.2. CBS’ Hot Bench and Warner Bros.’ People’s Court broke even at a 1.2 and a 0.7, respectively. Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis skidded 17% to a 0.5. That tied Fox’s Divorce Court, now hosted by Star Jones, which was flat for a second week. Wrigley Media’s sophomore Relative Justice receded 25% to a 0.3.

Court rookies Trifecta’s iCrime with Elizabeth Vargas and Entertainment Studios’ We the People with Judge Lauren Lake leveled off at a 0.5 and 0.3 in their second weeks.

Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory and Disney’s Last Man Standing stayed at a 1.8 and 1.0, respectively. Disney’s Modern Family forfeited 13% to a 0.7 tying Disney’s Family Guy, which grew 17%, as well as Warner Bros.’ Young Sheldon and Two and a Half Men, both of which were flat. Sony Pictures Television’s The Goldbergs and Seinfeld were both stable at a 0.6. CBS’ newcomer The Neighborhood was on par with its 0.5 premiere in its second week. Finally, Warner Bros.’ Mom moved up 33% to a 0.4, tying Disney’s Black-ish, which held steady for the seventh straight week. ■

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.