The pending heat of summer is sending syndies swooning.
Most shows were down in the week ending May 11, which marked the halfway point of the May sweep. Viewers were down by an average of three million during the week, and many of those were distracted by sports, including the NFL Draft on ESPN as well as the NBA and NHL playoffs.
NBCUniversal’s Maury, which tends to gain popularity in the summer months, was the only daytime show in the top 15 to grow from the previous frame, climbing 5% in households to a 2.0 live plus same day rating, according to Nielsen Media Research, and surging 17% among women 25-54 to a 1.4 in the key demo. Maury, in fourth place overall, also was tops among women 18-34 at a 1.2 and tied CBS Television Distribution’s Dr. Phil among women 18-49 at a 1.3.
Dr. Phil remained the top talker, dipping 3% to a 3.4 in households for the week, but improving 17% from last year at this time. Phil also led among daytime’s key demographic of women 25-54 at a 1.9.
Disney-ABC’s Live with Kelly and Michael regained second place in households, holding steady for the week at a 2.7 and rising 4% from last year. Live also gained 8% among women 25-54 to a 1.4 for third place.
Warner Bros.’ Ellen fell 7% in households to a third-place 2.6, and lost 6% among women 25-54 to a second-place 1.5. Compared to last year, however, Ellen was up 4% in households.
Sony Pictures Television’s Dr. Oz fell back to earth, dropping 17% to a 1.9 in households and fifth place overall behind Maury. NBCU’s Steve Harvey was off 5% to a 1.8, but continued to claim the largest year-to-year increase of any show in daytime, advancing 20%.
Disney-ABC’s Katie, nearing the end of its run, slumped 7% to a 1.4, tying NBCU’s Steve Wilkos and Debmar-Mercury’s Wendy Williams, both of which were flat. CTD’s Rachael Ray, NBCU’s Jerry Springer and CTD’s The Doctors all were unchanged at a 1.3, 1.2, and 1.1, respectively.
Further back, NBCU’s Trisha, which will conclude after this season, gained 20% to a 0.6 from a 0.5. Meredith’s The Better Show remained flat at a 0.2.
Among the freshman class, the only daytime talk show that will move on to a sophomore year, SPT’s Queen Latifah, gave back 8% to a 1.1, although Latifah tied Rachael Ray for the third straight week among women 25-54 at a 0.8.
Meanwhile, Warner Bros.’ Bethenny and CTD’s The Test, both of which are headed off the air, remained at a 0.7 and 0.6 in households, respectively.
In late night, CTD’s Arsenio Hall, which like Latifah, will return for year two, held steady at a 0.7. Court shows were little changed, although Warner Bros.’ Judge Mathis sank 7% to a new season-low 1.3, just behind Twentieth’s canceled Judge Alex, which was flat at a 1.4.
CTD’s Judge Judy eased 3% for the week to a 7.2, but was still up 7% from last year. Judy was the top-rated show in syndication for the 34th time in the past 37 weeks.
In second place, Warner Bros.’ People’s Court sagged 5% to a 1.8. Twentieth’s Divorce Court was unchanged at a 1.5. MGM’s newcomer, Paternity Court, added 10% to a 1.1.
Game shows were down across the board. CTD’s Wheel of Fortune barely hung on to first place, skidding 7% for the week to a 6.4, that show’s lowest rating in a month. Just behind, CTD’s Jeopardy! came within one-tenth of a point of Wheel, despite falling back 6% to a 6.3 for the week. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud also fell 6% to a 4.9, while Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire, which will add new host Terry Crews this fall, weakened 5% to a 2.1 and dropped 13% from last year at this time, game’s biggest year-to-year decline.
Magazines were mostly flat to down, after a week fueled by the breaking Donald Sterling story. CTD’s leader Entertainment Tonight yielded 6% from the prior week to a 3.2. CTD’s Inside Edition also softened 6% to a 2.9. Warner Bros.’ TMZ was unchanged at a 1.9. NBCU’s Access Hollywood was off 6% to a 1.5. Warner Bros.’ Extra gave back 7% to a 1.4. CTD’s The Insider rounded out the top six, holding steady at a 1.3.
Outside of the top tier, MGM’s RightThisMinute and Twentieth’s Dish Nation were flat at a 1.1 and 1.0, respectively. Trifecta’s recently canceled America Now strengthened 33% from a 0.3 to a 0.4, while Trifecta’s freshman, OK! TV, was unchanged at a 0.3 for the seventh consecutive week.
In off-net, sitcoms weren’t finding much funny, with every show in the category flat or down. Warner Bros.’ The Big Bang Theory dropped 5% from the prior week to a 5.8. Twentieth’s rookie, Modern Family, dipped 2% to a 4.1. Warner Bros.’ Two and a Half Men moved 3% lower to a 3.3. Twentieth’s Family Guy remained at a 2.6. SPT’s Seinfeld slid 5% to a 1.8, tying Twentieth’s The Cleveland Show, which was flat. Warner Bros.’ Friends faded 6% to a 1.7. Warner Bros.’ The Middle was flat at a 1.6. Twentieth's King of the Hill declined 6% to a 1.5, tying Twentieth’s How I Met Your Mother, which stumbled 6% to hit its second consecutive new series low.