Syndication Ratings: Syndies Slow at Summer's End

Only three talkers up: 'Steve Wilkos,' 'The Doctors' and 'Wendy Williams'

Most syndicated shows were flat to down in the week ending August 18, in which shows were in repeats, viewers were off on vacation -- dropping levels of people using television by 1.7 million viewers -- and Time Warner Cable continued to black out CBS stations for a second full week.

Only three talkers climbed from the prior week: NBCUniversal's Steve Wilkos, which grew 8% for the week and year to a 1.3 live plus same day household average rating, according to Nielsen Media Research; CBS Television Distribution's The Doctors, which gained 10% to a 1.1; and Debmar-Mercury's Wendy Williams, which rebounded 11% from its season low set in the prior session to a 1.0, up 25% from the same week last year.

Disney-ABC's Live with Kelly and Michael, the only top-tier talker to be in originals for the week, was number one for the second straight week at a 2.5, down 4% from the prior week but up 19% from last year at this time, just weeks before former New York Giant Michael Strahan had officially been named Kelly Ripa's co-host.

CTD's usual leader, Dr. Phil, was right behind Live, steady at a 2.4 with a full week of reruns.

Sony Pictures Television's Dr. Oz, the star of which made news when he saved a woman who was hit by a cab near his studio in Rockefeller Center, came in third with a week of repeats, dipping 5% to a 1.9, and tying NBCUniversal's Maury, which also eased 5%.

Warner Bros.' Ellen was off 6% to a 1.7, but still up 6% from last year. Disney-ABC's newcomer Katie, which had talk's largest increase in the previous session, gave back 6% to a 1.5. NBCU's fellow freshman, Steve Harvey, held steady at a 1.2, tying NBCU's Jerry Springer, which yielded 8% and CTD's Rachael Ray, which remained at a 1.2.

NBCU's Trisha was flat at a 0.4, while Meredith's The Better Show came in last with a 0.2 for the fifth week in a row.

At the top of the syndie chart, CTD's Judge Judy in repeats held steady at a 6.2, and was first-run's top show for the 16th consecutive week. Warner Bros.' People's Court came in a distant second with an unchanged 1.5. Warner Bros.' Judge Mathis recovered 8% to a 1.3, finishing third among the court shows. Twentieth's Judge Alex added 20% to a 1.2, while its Divorce Court climbed 10% to a 1.1. Entertainment Studios' America's Court tumbled 14% to a 0.6. ES' freshman, Justice for All, increased 25% from a 0.4 to a 0.5, while its We the People decreased 33% from a 0.3 to a 0.2.

In access, magazine strips were mostly stable. CTD's leader, Entertainment Tonight, gave back 3% from the prior week to a 3.3. CTD's Inside Edition inched up 4% to a 2.8. Warner Bros.' TMZ, NBCU's Access Hollywood, Warner Bros.' Extra and CTD's omg! Insider all held steady at a 1.8, 1.6, 1.3 and 1.3, respectively. Twentieth's rookie, Dish Nation, dropped 10% to a 0.9.

Game shows were mostly steady, or down a bit. CTD's leader, Wheel of Fortune, slowed 3% from the prior week to a 5.8. CTD's Jeopardy! dropped to a new season low for the second straight week, fading 2% to a 5.0. Debmar-Mercury's Family Feud was flat at a 4.5. Disney-ABC's Who Wants to be a Millionaire was unchanged at a 2.3. NBCU's rookie Baggage bucked the trend, landing at its season-high 1.2 for a second straight week.

Among the off-net sitcoms, Warner Bros.' The Big Bang Theory was flat for the week at a 6.0. Warner Bros.' Two and a Half Men weakened 2% to a 4.1. Twentieth's Family Guy grew 6% to a 3.4. Twentieth's How I Met Your Mother moved 8% higher to a 2.6. Twentieth's King of the Hill was flat at a 2.3. Warner Bros.' Friends finished 5% higher at a 2.2. SPT's Seinfeld stayed at a 2.1 for the third week in a row, while CTD's Everybody Loves Raymond remained at a 1.8 for the fifth consecutive week.