The first round of national ratings are in, and this year's entry batch of
syndicated shows are comparing well against last year's freshman entries,
although last year wasn't exactly syndication's best showing.
Warner Bros.' Celebrity Justice, a spinoff of Extra that
follows famous people through the tribulations of being on trial, did a 1.3
Nielsen Media Research rating on 226 stations in mainly late-night spots,
covering 95 percent of the United States. Last year, only Universal's Crossing Over
with John Edward debuted better.
And Warner Bros.' The Caroline Rhea Show, which is also cleared mostly
in late-night slots, did a 1.2 rating on 170 stations, covering 93 percent of
the country. Caroline Rhea's opening week beat seven of last fall's
top 10 syndie debuts. One analyst said the ratings for both shows beat
expectations, particularly considering their late-night clearances.
National numbers are not available for Buena Vista Television's The Wayne Brady
Show because the syndicator chose to roll the show out slowly, thus keeping
its clearances down and eliminating its barter availability. But Buena Vista
executives said they are optimistic about the program and expect it to