Syndication Ratings: Syndies Pick Up Pace as November Sweep Starts

Talk was hot as the week ended Nov. 3, halfway through the first week of the November sweep.

NBCUniversal’s Steve Harvey notched its best week ever, while four talkers hit season highs.

CBS Television Distribution’s Dr. Phil clocked its biggest rating since the May sweep with a first-place 3.1, up 3% from the prior week. That rating did not include Dr. Phil McGraw’s exclusive two-part interview with Cleveland kidnapping survivor Michelle Knight, which took place on Nov. 5 and 6, and will be included in the national syndication ratings next week.

There are no year-to-year comparisons for this week since everything in syndication was broken out last year at this time due to Superstorm Sandy.

Disney/ABC’s Live with Kelly and Michael got a big boost to its weekly rating, after it hit a 3.5 for its annual Halloween show on Thursday, Oct. 31. That was enough to give Live sole possession of second place with a season-high 3.0, up 15% from the prior week. The last time Live hit a 3.0 was nearly two years ago, during the week of Nov. 7, 2011. This also was the show’s highest-rated Halloween show since 2007.

Warner Bros.’ Ellen, which follows Steve Harvey in the country’s five largest markets, added 12% to a new season-high 2.9, the show’s highest rating since the week of Dec. 10, 2012. SPT’s Dr. Oz surged 10% to a 2.2, that show’s best ratings since the week of May 6.

NBCU’s Maury was next in line, holding steady at a 1.9. Disney/ABC's Katie jumped 6% to a 1.8, tying Steve Harvey for the fifth straight week. Steve Harvey also grew 6% to hit its series-high 1.8.

CTD’s Rachael Ray was consistent at a 1.4 for the fourth consecutive week, tying Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams, which was steady. NBCU’s Steve Wilkos and Jerry Springer both held firm at a 1.3 and a 1.2, respectively.

CTD’s The Doctors dipped 8% to a 1.1. NBCU’s Trisha and Meredith’s The Better Show were unchanged at a 0.5 and 0.2, respectively.

Among the rookies, ratings for SPT’s Queen Latifah are being reprocessed for the week, while Warner Bros.’ Bethenny, and CTD’s Arsenio and The Test all were flat at a 0.9, 0.7 and 0.6 for the week. 

The top-two court shows saw gains for the week. CTD’s Judge Judy hit a new season-high 7.2, up 1% from the prior session and tying CTD’s Wheel of Fortune as the syndication leader. In second place, with a quarter of Judy’s rating, Warner Bros.' People’s Court picked up 6% to a new season-high 1.8.

Twentieth’s Judge Alex and Divorce Court and Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis all were unchanged at a 1.6, 1.6 and 1.5, respectively. MGM’s freshman Paternity Court trailed, dropping 20% to a 0.8.

In access, game shows were lively, with all four shows at or near season highs. CTD’s Wheel of Fortune spun a 3% gain from the previous week to a 7.2, tying Judge Judy for the first time in 15 weeks. CTD’s Jeopardy! also edged up 3% to a new season-high 6.3. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud ticked up 2% to a new season-best 4.8. Disney/ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire remained at its season-high 2.2. for a second week.

Most of the top magazines, which had a big week in the prior session, were little changed. CTD’s Entertainment Tonight posted a 3.8 for the third straight week. CTD’s Inside Edition lost 3% to a 3.0. Warner Bros.’ TMZ faded 5% to a 1.8. NBCU’s Access Hollywood remained at its season-high 1.8, tying Warner Bros.’ TMZ. Warner Bros.’ Extra, which did not air twice during the week in top market New York, dipped 6% to a 1.5. CTD’s omg! Insider was the only magazine to improve, advancing 7% to a 1.5, tying Extra and matching its season high.

MGM’s RightThisMinute was flat at a 1.0. Twentieth’s sophomore, Dish Nation, sank 10% to a 0.9. Trifecta’s America Now was flat at a 0.3 for the eighth week in a row. Trifecta’s rookie OK! TV remained at a 0.2 for the ninth straight week.

Among the rookie off-net sitcoms, Twentieth’s Modern Family grew 7% to a new season-high 4.5. Twentieth’s animated The Cleveland Show and Warner Bros.’ The Middle both were flat at a 1.9 and 1.5, respectively, while SPT's Community was steady at a 0.4.

Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory remained the veteran sitcom leader, although the show was flat week to week at a 5.9. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men inched up 3% to a 3.7. Twentieth’s Family Guy was flat at a 2.9. Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother climbed 5% to a 2.1. Twentieth’s King of the Hill and SPT’s Seinfeld stayed at a 1.7, while Twentieth’s Rules of Engagement retreated 6% to a 1.6, tying Warner Bros.’ Friends, which was flat.

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.