CBS Television Distribution's first-run rookie, Swift Justice with Nancy Grace, hit a series high 1.9 live plus same day household ratings average, according to Nielsen, in the week ending April 10. Swift Justice was the anomaly in a week in which most other syndies were flat or down as television viewership fell off by almost 1.4 million viewers. Swift Justice, which airs in one hour blocks of two-half hour episodes on weekday afternoons, was the only rookie to improve, jumping 6% over the prior week.
The week ending April 10 was the second week of Nielsen's new ratings methodology, in which all views of all runs are counted in a show's weekly audience average. That change has driven up the ratings of some shows, particularly ones that have robust ratings for their double-runs.
The rest of the rookie pack, which does not air in blocks of double-runs, did not fare as well as Swift Justice. Sony's Nate Berkus and Twentieth's Don't Forget the Lyrics each sank 10% to a 0.9. Litton's Judge Karen's Court fell 11% to a 0.8, and Entertainment Studios' America's Court with Judge Ross was flat at a 0.3 for the fourth week in a row.
Elsewhere, CTD's Oprah, which has been hovering around its season low for the past three weeks, finally rebounded 15% from the prior week to a 3.9. Oprah returned to original episodes midway through the week.
In second place, CTD's Dr. Phil was unchanged at a 2.7, although it was one of only two talkers to improve year to year, gaining 13% from last year at this time. Disney-ABC's Live with Regis and Kelly, Sony's Dr. Oz and Warner Bros.' Ellen all were flat at a 2.6, 2.3 and 2.1, respectively. NBCUniversal's Maury dropped 5% to a 2.0. CTD's The Doctors held steady at a 1.7. CTD's Rachael Ray eased 6% to a 1.5. NBCU's Jerry Springer lost 7% to a 1.4. NBCU's Steve Wilkos tumbled 14% to a 1.2. Debmar-Mercury's Wendy Williams, now off of ABC's Dancing with the Stars, weakened 15% from the prior week to a 1.1, although year-to-year the show was up 10%.
CTD's game show leader, Wheel of Fortune, dipped 1% to a 6.9, but remained tied with Warner Bros.' Two and a Half Men as syndication's top-rated show. CTD's Jeopardy! fell 2% to a 5.9. Debmar-Mercury's Family Feud and Disney-ABC's Who Wants to be a Millionaire each were flat and remain tied at a 2.5, while Twentieth's Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader added 10% to a 1.1.
Among the magazines, CTD's leader Entertainment Tonight was unchanged at a 3.8, while ET Weekend surged 40% to a 2.1. CTD's Inside Edition upticked 3% to a 3.0. Warner Bros.' TMZ and NBCU's Access Hollywood each were flat at a 2.2 and 2.0, respectively. CTD's The Insider showed the most weekly improvement of any magazine, gaining 6% to a 1.7. Warner Bros.' Extra, which was the most preempted magazine due to March Madness and the Masters golf tournament, was off 12% to a 1.5.
CTD's Judge Judy dominated daytime with a 6.6, off 6% from the prior week. CTD's Judge Joe Brown dipped 4% to a 2.6. Warner Bros.' People's Court eroded 5% to a 1.9. Twentieth's Judge Alex skidded 12% to a 1.5, tying Warner Bros.' Judge Mathis and Twentieth's Divorce Court, both of which slid 6%. Warner Bros.' Judge Jeanine Pirro came in last at a 0.9, down 10%.
Among the off-net sitcoms, Warner Bros.' Two and a Half Men softened 7% to a 6.9. Twentieth's Family Guy was flat at a 4.7. Disney-ABC's My Wife and Kids faded 6% to a 3.2. Warner Bros.' George Lopez and Sony's Seinfeld each were unchanged at a 3.0 and 2.8 respectively. CTD's Everybody Loves Raymond ratcheted down 16% to a 2.7. NBCU's The Office drooped 7% to a 2.6. Twentieth's King of the Hill climbed 4% to a new season high 2.4. Warner Bros.' Friends advanced 5% to a new season high 2.2.
Among the new off-net and off-cable strips, Twentieth's How I Met Your Mother and Warner Bros.' New Adventures of Old Christine each were flat at a 2.9 and 1.6, respectively. Debmar-Mercury's Meet the Browns fell 7% to a 1.3. Warner Bros.' off-HBO Entourage was flat at a 0.7, while Warner's Curb Your Enthusiasm shrank 14% to a 0.6. NBCU's off-Bravo Real Housewives declined 17% to a 0.5.
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