Syndie Shows Rise in Sweeps Debut

National syndicated ratings for the week ending Nov. 14, which includes the first full week of the November sweep, produced the highest numbers yet for Entertainment Tonight spinoff TheInsider, which hit its third series high in the past five weeks.

Insider scored a 2.8, up 4% from the prior week. Behind Insider were Access Hollywood at a season-high  2.7, Extra and Celebrity Justice, unchanged at a 2.4 and a 1.1, respectively.

The top mag, ET, averaged a new season high 5.5, up 4%, with Inside Edition up 9% to a new season high 3.7 in second place.

Insider was also also the highest-rated rookie strip for the ninth week in a row, nearly double the ratings of its closest rookie rival. The only other newcomer to register a new series high was Tony Danza, up 8% to a 1.4.

Two other new shows, Pat Croce and Life & Style, were up 17% and 25%, respectively, to a 0.7 and 0.5. Ambush Makeover and Larry Elder were unchanged at 1.1 and 0.8, respectively. Jane Pauley was the only new strip to decline, down 6% to a 1.5.

Elsewhere, in what turned out to be  strong week for the top tier strips in most genres, six talk show vets hit new season highs: Oprah was up 9% to an 8.6; Dr Phil, was up 12% to a 5.6, the biggest weekly increase of any talker with at least a a 1.0 rating; Live with Regis & Kelly, which averaged a 3.6, was up 3% (Desperate Housewives star Marcia Cross (Bree) was a big draw at 6.46 million homes on Nov. 12); Maury was up 8% to a 2.8; Montel was up 9% to a 2.5; and Jerrry Springer sprung forward 11% to a 2.0.

Also in daytime, five court shows scored new season benchmarks: The supreme court show Judge Judy, was up 4% to a 5.1, its fourth new-season high in five weeks; Judge Joe Brown, at number two, was up 10% to a 3.4; Divorce Court was up 8% to a 2.8; Judge Greg Mathis was up 4% to a 2.5; and Judge Hatchett was up 12% to a 1.9.

In access, Jeopardy featured Ken Jennings winning games on Monday and Tuesday, followed by the first three days of a college tournament. Jeopardy ratings were down 10% to an 8.4. Wheel of Fortune led the games with a season-high 9.6, up 3%. Everybody Loves Raymond, headed off-net sitcoms with a season-high 6.9, up 1%, followed by Seinfeld with a season-high 6.0, up 9%.

Off net rookie strip Malcolm in the Middle averaged a series-high 3.4, up 6%, with Fear Factor also at a new series high, up 5% to a 2.0. Fear Factor's performance is being closely watched. It is the first off-net reality show in syndication, so it may give programmers an idea of how repeatable reality shows are.

Yes, Dear was unchained at a 1.7, while Girlfriends was up 6% to a 1.7.

In weekly action, ET Tonight Weekend easily led all first-run weekly hours with a new season high 3.7, up 16% in the second weekend of the sweep. CSI dominated off-net weekly hours with a new series high 5.9, up 18%.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.