Syndication ratings rose modestly in the week ending July 23 as hotter weather apparently kept some viewers in front of the TV and close to the air conditioner.

All American’s “Baywatch” enjoyed the heat, soaring 33% to 6.5 in the Nielsen national barter rankings and leaving the usual weekly leader, Paramount’s “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” buried in the sand with a 2% decrease to a season-low mark of 5.2. The space series also fell 12% from a 5.9 during the corresponding week last July. In contrast, “Baywatch” was up 5% year-to-year, while the new strip version jumped 7% over the previous week to 1.5 in 42% of t he U.S.

MCA TV’s “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” gained 4% to 4.8 from a season low last week

Warner Bros.’ “Kung Fu: The Legend Continues” (3.7) fought its way to a 16% gain – it has been on a steady upward climb the past several weeks – but it nonetheless slipped 8% from last year’s 4.0.

Among other big weeklies making big moves, the frosh Rysher series “Lonesome Dove” soared 23% to 2.7, while Columbia TriStar’s “Forever Knight” tumbled 19% to 2.1.

Although magazines were little changed during the week, other reality strips mostly turned in double-digit increases.

Most talkshows were also slightly higher.

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