The season, at two weeks
By Paige Albiniak -- Broadcasting & Cable, 9/29/2002 8:00:00 PM
National ratings are in for syndication's first two weeks of debuts, and Celebrity Justice from Warner Bros. held its own. And then Dr. Phil roared in.
Scoring a 1.2 average rating in its second week, according to Nielsen Media Research, Celebrity Justice, a strip about celebrities and their legal problems, was strong even though it faced preemptions during the first anniversary of 9/11 and is cleared in late night in many markets. It's on at 4 a.m. on WNBC-TV New York (late even if it is when many Gotham celebs are rolling home).
NBC Enterprises'The John Walsh Show grabbed a 1.1 rating. Warner Bros.'s other strip, The Caroline Rhea Show, was down 17%, to a 1.0 from a 1.2 in its first week. Paramount's Life Moments had a 0.8 rating.
Rhea's and Celebrity Justice's ratings were hurt by Sept. 11 preemptions: Both were preempted enough to bring down their total ratings but not enough for Nielsen to eliminate that day's ratings from their tallies. Walsh's and Life Moments' ratings are based on a four-day average and do not include Sept. 11.
Nielsen does not nationally rate Buena Vista Television's The Wayne Brady Show and Teleco Productions'We the Jury because the two shows are cleared in 55% and 65% of the country, respectively. Both distributors chose to roll those shows out slowly.
According to weekly averages for the shows that launched on Sept. 16, Paramount/King World's Dr. Phil grabbed a 5.1 rating/14 share in its first week. Buena Vista Television's Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, hosted by Meredith Vieira, averaged a 2.8/6 for the week, down two points from its lead-in, which BVT executives attribute to the strength of Dr. Phil's performance.
The other game show that launched on Sept. 16, Sony Pictures Television's Pyramid, hosted by Donny Osmond, held steady at 2.0/5 but averaged a one-point share loss from its lead-in. Tribune's Beyond With James Van Praagh and Twentieth's The Rob Nelson Show struggled, with both shows averaging a 0.9/3 for the week.
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