Syndication Ratings: Syndies Hit Spring Slump

Almost all shows down or flat in the aftermath of February sweeps

Flat is the new up, with almost every show in syndication losing ground in the week ending March 11 as the highly-promoted February sweeps came to an end.

Warner Bros.' off-net rookie champ, The Big Bang Theory, took sole possession of the top of the syndie chart, adding 6% from the prior week to a syndication-leading 7.4 live plus same day household rating average, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Following Big Bang, Warner Bros.' Two and Half Men inched up 2% to a 5.9. Twentieth's Family Guy was flat at a 4.5. Twentieth's How I Met Your Mother dropped 9% to a 2.9. Sony's Seinfeld softened 4% to a 2.5. CBS Television Distribution's Everybody Loves Raymond remained at a 2.4. Twentieth's King of the Hill climbed 5% to a 2.2. Warner Bros.' Friends, newly remastered and rereleased in high definition, was flat at a 2.1.

Among the freshman sitcoms, NBCUniversal's 30 Rock was steady at a 1.4 in mostly late fringe time slots. Twentieth's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia retreated 8% to a 1.1, while Sony's ‘Til Death was unchanged at a 0.6.

In daytime, CBS Television Distribution's Dr. Phil topped the talk chart for its 20th time this season, losing 9% for the week to a 2.9, but adding 4% for the year. Likewise, Sony's Dr. Oz declined 10% to a 2.7. Disney-ABC's Live! with Kelly fell 4% to a 2.6. Warner Bros.' Ellen faded 8% to a 2.4, tying NBCU's Maury, which was flat but up 20% for the year. CTD's The Doctors and Rachael Ray each eased 6% to a 1.6 and 1.5, respectively. NBCU's Jerry Springer and Steve Wilkos each were unchanged at a 1.5 and 1.4, respectively, although Springer improved 25% year to year. Debmar-Mercury's Wendy Williams dropped 17% to a 1.0, tying Sony's Nate Berkus, which fell 9%.

Warner Bros.' top rookie, Anderson, dipped 7% to a 1.4. Debmar-Mercury's Jeremy Kyle sputtered 14% to a 0.6. Entertainment Studios' We the People declined 20% to a 0.4 In late-night, CTD's new dating show, Excused, slipped 14% to a 0.6.

After getting plenty of ratings pops in February due to covering the Grammys, the Oscars and the death of Whitney Houston, magazines dropped back to earth.

CTD's Entertainment Tonight dropped 7% to a 3.9. CTD's Inside Edition eroded 6% to a 3.1. Warner Bros.' TMZ was flat at a 2.1. NBCU's Access Hollywood yielded 5% to a 2.0. CTD's The Insider and Warner Bros.' Extra each were down 6% to a 1.7 and 1.6, respectively.

CTD's Judge Judy was off 4% from the previous week to a 7.1, good enough for second place in the overall syndication rankings. In second place among the court shows, CTD's Judge Joe Brown lost 11% to a 2.5. Warner Bros.' People's Court weakened 5% to a 2.1. Twentieth's Judge Alex slid 6% to a 1.7. Warner Bros.' Judge Mathis slumped 6% to a 1.5. CTD's Swift Justice was down 7% to a 1.4. Twentieth's Divorce Court dropped 13% to a 1.3. Entertainment Studios' America's Court declined 10% to a 0.9.

Among the game shows, CTD's Wheel of Fortune dipped 3% to a 7.1, tying Judge Judy for second place overall among all syndicated shows. CTD's Jeopardy! dropped 2% to a 6.0. Debmar-Mercury's Family Feud finished 6% behind the prior week at a 2.9. Disney-ABC's Who Wants to Be a Millionaire backtracked 7% to a 2.5.