The final four games of the World Series caused widespread preemptions and intense competition for some high-profile syndicated magazines and other shows during the week ended Oct.29, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings.

Still, magazine household and demo leader “Entertainment Tonight” (7.0) from Paramount remained at its highest rating level in seven months, and beat King World’s “Oprah Winfrey” for the second consecutive week – the first time it pulled off back-to-back wins over the talk queen since the week of Jan. 30.

Mags slide

All the magazines, with the exception of Warner Bros.’ “Extra,” were down from their year-ago averages due in part to baseball (there was no World Series last year because of the baseball strike), as well as affiliation and time period shifts.

After “ET,” KW’s “Inside Edition” scored a 5.4 and Par’s “Hard Copy” wound up at a 4.8. Both were down a bit from the previous week.

Of the off-net sitcoms, shows with strong kids components gained. Buena Vista’s “Home Improvement” was up 4% to 8.5 (sweeping the off-net demo race again) and Twentieth’s “The Simpsons” inched up 2% to 5.9 (placing third overall in the demos). Columbia TriStar’s more adult-oriented “Seinfeld” slipped 3% to 6.6 and was a solid second in the key age-bracket race.

On the talkshow front, Multimedia’s “Donahue” hit its lowest ratings ever with a 1.7 – off 54% from last year’s 3.7.

WB’s “Carnie Wilson” led the frosh talk crop in young women and households, gaining 5% to a high-water mark of 2.1. But in metered-market averages for October, it underperformed its lead-in by 31% and fell 25% from its time period average last year.

“Carnie” tied Twentieth’s sophomore talkshow “Gordon Elliott” for 11th place out of 21 daytime syndie talkshows.

Col’s “Tempestt” was flat at 1.8, but had the least drop-off in the metered markets last month. It fell 11% from its lead-in and 15% from its year-ago average.

Genesis’ “Mark Walberg” jumped 7% to 1.5, but it slid 18% from its lead-in in metered markets and plunged 30% from its year-ago time-period average.

BVTV’s “Danny Bonaduce” climbed 17% to a new high rating of 1.4, but had a weak October sweeps perf. It dropped 11 % from its lead-in and 27% from last year’s time-period average.

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