News Articles

Election doldrums

12/17/2000 07:00:00 PM Eastern

The month-long election may have brought TV excitement, but it meant depression for a slew of syndicated series during the November sweeps. With viewers caught up in the nonstop coverage on CNN, MSNBC and Fox News Channel, all six veteran court shows, 10 of 12 seasoned talk shows, and nine of the top 10 veteran weeklies were down from November 1999.

The top court show, Judge Judy
, posted a 6.8 rating for the Nov. 2-29 ratings period, 11% below its year-ago showing, according to Nielsen Media Research. The show was trailed by Judge Joe Brown
(3.9, down 9%), Divorce Court
(3.1, down 6%), Judge Greg Mathis
(2.0, down 5%), People's Court
(1.9, down 24%) and Judge Mills Lane
(1.7, down 26%).

As for the talkers, only Live With Regis
(3.8, up 9%) improved over last year, a sign that few viewers are missing Kathie Lee. Leading the group was Oprah
(5.9, down 9%), followed by Jerry
(3.6, down 22%), Maury
(3.4, down 3%), Rosie
(3.1, down 14%), Sally
(2.6, down 24%), Ricki
(2.5, down 11%), Jenny
(2.1, down 13%), Martha
(1.6, down 6%) and Queen Latifah
(1.2, flat).

It was the same story for veteran weeklies. Only Entertainment Tonight Weekend
(4.0, up 8%) fattened its viewing base from November 1999. Runners-up were The X-Files
(3.9, down 11%), Xena
(3.6, flat), Stargate SG-1
(3.2, down 3%), ER
(2.9, down 28%), VIP
(2.6, down 10%), Earth: Final Conflict
(2.3, down 21%), Beastmaster
(2.2, down 21%) and Baywatch Hawaii
(2.1, down 28%).

The rookies, of course, don't have year-to-year change to show. Court-related freshmen topped the list, led by Power of Attorney
(2.4), Judge Hatchett
(2.2) and Arrest & Trial
(2.0). Spin City
(3.1), Sabrina, the Teenage Witch
(1.9) and Suddenly Susan
(1.6) were the top off-nets. Andromeda
(3.9), Maximum Exposure
(2.2) and Sheena
(1.9) were the best of the weeklies.


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