Syndie talk off, mags up post-sweeps

The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12.

Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who appeared on Warner Bros.’ “Jenny Jones” – the worst PR for the genre since the 1990 suicide of a guest who had appeared on King World’s “Oprah Winfrey.”

But the media’s laserlike focus on talk was not enough to stave off the depressed ratings that normally follow a major sweeps period. Every talk vet declined from the previous week.

“Jones” slipped 6% to 5.0, Columbia Tri-Star’s “Ricki Lake” declined 7% to 5.7, “Montel Williams” lost 5% to 4.2 and Multimedia’s “Jerry Springer” fell 8% to 3.3 – tying Multimedia vet “Donahue,” which de creased 6% for the second straight week.

The closely watched debut of Tribune’s “Charles Perez,” which was rolled out on 26 stations covering 76% of the U.S., garnered a 1.3 rating.

“Perez” still managed to beat Group W’s “Marilu,” which posted an infinitesimal 0.7 in 68% of the U.S., down 22% from the previous week to its worst numbers yet.

At the top of the talk list, “Oprah” sank to her lowest rating of the season with a 16% fall to 7.4 from 8.8. Buena Vista TV’s “Live With Regis & Kathie Lee” took the largest talker dive, 21%, to 3.7 from 4.7. Other talkshows losing ground included Multimedia’s “Sally Jessy Raphael” (down 2% to 4.7), Paramount’s “Maury Povich” (off 4% to 4.3), Tribune’s “Geraldo” (dropping 10% to 3.7 from its season high) and KW’s “Rolonda” (slipping 5% to 1.9).

Meanwhile, all the major entertainment and tabloid magazines gained during the week, with the exception of KW’s “Inside Edition” and “American Journal.”

“Hard Copy” rose 8% to 6.7, while “Edition” remained flat at 6.4. It was the first time since the week of Jan. 16 that “Copy” beat “Edition” in the household ratings contest.

Par’s magazine pack leader “Entertainment Tonight” climbed 4% to 7.5, while “Journal” dropped 5% to 4.1 and WB’s “Extra – The Entertainment Magazine” gained 4% to 5.1. “Extra” still beat “Journal” in the key young adult demos and tied it in the older adult category.

Elsewhere, M.G. Perin’s weekly series “The Extraordinary,” recently renewed for next season, got slammed for a 21% loss to an all-time low of 1.1.

Par’s “Jon Stewart” matched its lowest ratings of the season with a 9% drop to 1.0.

Rysher’s “Lonesome Dove,” which began the season as the top-ranked new weekly series, fell 3% to a new low of 3.1.

The current top new weekly, MCA TV’s “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys,” eased 3% to 6.2 from the previous week’s high-water mark. Its companion series, MCA’s “Vanishing Son,” rebounded 13% to 4.4.

More TV

  • Morgan Spurlock Sexual Misconduct

    Morgan Spurlock's TNT Series 'Who Rules the World' Halts Production

    The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12. Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who […]

  • George Clooney Matt Charman

    Watergate Series in the Works at Netflix From George Clooney, Matt Charman

    The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12. Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who […]

  • The Chi

    TV News Roundup: Showtime Offers Early Look at Series Premiere of 'The Chi'

    The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12. Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who […]

  • Sam Esmail Remote Controlled Podcast

    Remote Controlled: 'Mr. Robot' Creator Reflects on Season 3, Previews Season 4

    The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12. Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who […]

  • Thomas Ferguson

    Endemol Shine Names Thomas Ferguson VP of Licensing, Partnerships

    The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12. Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who […]

  • Bob Iger Rupert Murdoch

    International Newswire: So Where Does Disney-Fox Pact Leave International?

    The usual post-sweeps let-down, continued competition from the O.J. Simpson trial and preemptions for specials eroded the ratings of most syndicated shows, according to the Nielsen national barter rankings for the week ended March 12. Most eyes were on talkshows, which took a pounding in the national press following the murder of a guest who […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content