Syndication Ratings: Regis' Exit Drives 'Live!' to First Place in the November Sweep

Rookies 'Anderson,' 'Big Bang Theory' both up 25%+ from September debut

Regis Philbin's farewell celebration lifted Live! with Regis and Kelly to a 3.3 live plus same day household ratings average in the Nov. 2011 sweep, giving the show the right to the title of the sweep's top talker. The November sweep ran from Oct. 27 through Nov. 23.

Live!'s 3.3 was a 32% improvement over last November. It also was just enough to beat CBS Television Distribution's Dr. Phil, which finished the sweep up 7% from last year to a 3.2. Season-to-date, however, Dr. Phil leads all talk shows among households and viewers.

Sony's Dr. Oz took third place in the sweep, gaining 17% from last November to a 2.8. Season-to-date, Dr. Oz also is ahead of Live! Dr. Phil is averaging 4.2 million daily viewers compared to Oz's 3.8 and Live!'s 3.6. Both Phil and Oz air in higher-rated afternoon time slots, however, while Live! airs predominantly in morning time slots.

Warner Bros.' Ellen finished fourth at a 2.5, moving up 9%. NBCU's Maury jumped 20% to a 2.4, but led all the talk shows among women 18-34 and women 18-49, with a 1.8 and 1.7, respectively. Among women 18-34, Ellen was in second place with a 1.1, followed by Dr. Phil and NBCU's Steve Wilkos, which tied at a 1.0. Among women 18-49, Dr. Phil took second with a 1.4, followed by Live! at a 1.3 and Ellen at a 1.2.

CTD's Rachael Ray rallied 6% to a 1.7, followed by CTD's The Doctors, down 17%, and Jerry Springer, up 7%, at a 1.5. Wilkos weakened 7% to a 1.3, while Debmar-Mercury's Wendy Williams improved 9% to a 1.2. Sony's Nate Berkus added 10% to a 1.1.

Warner Bros.' Anderson improved 27% from its first-week debut in September to a 1.4 sweep average. Debmar-Mercury's Jeremy Kyle added 20% to a 0.6, up a tenth of a point from its first-week 0.5 premiere average. Entertainment Studios' We the People with Gloria Allred climbed 25% to a 0.5, also up a tenth of a point from its 0.4 premiere.

CTD's Excused, a late-night dating show, added 17% from its 0.6 debut to a 0.7.
NBCU's slow roll-out, Access Hollywood Live, scored a 0.9 rating/3 share in its 17 metered markets, equaling its November 2010 performance.

Elsewhere, CTD's Judge Judy hit a 7.2 in the November sweep, a 64% spike from last year only primary runs were counted in a show's average audience rating. Last spring, Nielsen began counting all runs in its average audience ratings. Judge Judy's double runs perform as well as its primary runs, and that's driven its reported ratings up.

In second place, CTD's Judge Joe Brown surged 45% to a 2.9. Warner Bros.' People's Court added 11% to a 2.1. Warner Bros.' Judge Mathis was flat at a 1.6, tying Twentieth's Judge Alex, which advanced 23% to a 1.6. Twentieth's Divorce Court climbed 15% to a 1.5. CTD's Swift Justice with Jackie Glass improved 8% to a 1.4, while hitting a new season high 1.5 in the final week of the sweep.

Entertainment Studios' America's Court with Judge Ross, with much better clearances than last year, soared 125% to a 0.9.

CTD's Entertainment Tonight claimed the magazine race for the 85th consecutive sweep, with a 4.0 household ratings average, despite dipping 5% from last November.

CTD's Inside Edition added 10% to a 3.2. NBCU's Access Hollywood took third place, improving 11% to a 2.1. Warner Bros.' TMZ also gained 11% to a 2.0. CTD's The Insider notched a 1.8, steady with last November. Warner Bros.' Extra held steady at a 1.7.

Among game shows, CTD's Wheel of Fortune upticked 3% to a 7.4 to lead all syndicated shows. CTD's Jeopardy! edged ahead 7% to a 6.2. Debmar-Mercury's Family Feud skyrocketed 88% to a 3.0. Disney-ABC's Who Wants to be a Millionaire moved up 14% to a 2.5.

Among the off-net sitcoms, Warner Bros.' rookie Big Bang Theory grew 31% from its debut to a 5.9. NBCU's 30 Rock, airing mostly in late fringe, dipped 7% to a 1.3. Twentieth's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Sony's ‘Til Death each were flat at a 1.2 and 0.6, respectively.

Warner Bros.' Two and Half Men topped the veterans with a 6.3 average, up 11% from last year. Twentieth's Family Guy grew 22% to a 3.9. Twentieth's How I Met Your Mother shot up 43% to a 3.3. Sony's Seinfeld picked up 4% to a 2.6. Warner Bros.' Friends strengthened 33% to a 2.4. CTD's Everybody Loves Raymond retreated 18% to a 2.3. Twentieth's King of the Hill declined 5% to a 2.1. Carsey-Werner's That 70s Show added 6% to a 1.8, while NBCU's The Office sank 27% to a 1.6.