Pre-Emptions Depress Syndie Shows


The ratings for most syndicated shows ticked down for the week ending Oct. 10 thanks in part to a triple hit of pre-emptions from a presidential debate, a vice-presidential debate and Major League Baseball postseason match-ups.

Cable news viewing was up 4% from the prior week, while HUT (homes using television) levels between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m., prime syndication real estate, fell by 404,000 homes on average.

Despite the competition and preemptions, the eight first-run rookies held their own. Five were unchanged from the week before, one, The Tony Danza Show, was up, and two were down.

New entertainment mag, The Insider, remained the highest rated new first-run strip, holding steady at a 2.4, out-rating 11-season veteran Extra and tying nine-season veteran, Access Hollywood. Extra was down 5%; Access Hollywood was down 4%.

Tony Danza Show ratings were up for the second week in a row, this time up 8% from the prior week to a new series high of 1.3, and up 20% in women 18-34 and 33% in women 18-49.

Danza tied new talker Jane Pauley after trailing that show by 27% two weeks before. Pauley was down 7% to a 1.3 in week six, matching its series low, after being downgraded in New Orleans; Portland, Ore.; and Albany, N.Y.

Home Delivery was down 9% to a 1.0 in its fourth week, dropping into a tie with Ambush Makeover, which was unchanged. Also unchanged were Larry Elder at a 0.8, Pat Croce at a 0.6 and Life & Style at a 0.5

Among the rookie off-net strips, Girlfriends was up 13% to a 1.7, pulling ahead of Fear Factor, unchanged at a 1.6, good enough for a tie with Yes, Dear, up 7%. Malcolm in the Middle continued to lead the group with a 2.9, down 3%.

Elsewhere, newcomer CSI led the off-net weekly hours with a series high 5.2, up 11%.

P.S. Jeopardy is certainly not new, but it got new legs with the return of champion Ken Jennings following a two-week break for a Tournament of Champions. The show's ratings were up 14% to a 7.9.