Trekkies take note: For the first time in 10 years, Paramount Domestic TV’s “Star Trek” franchise has fallen out of the top season-to-date spot for weekly syndie hours. Moving into first place are Universal Domestic TV’s action series “Xena” and “Hercules.”

In the latest national Nielsen chart, for the week ending March 23, “Xena: Warrior Princess” and “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” tied at 5.8 season-to-date, edging out Par’s “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” (5.7). “Deep Space Nine” or its predecessor, “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” has held the top household slot for the past decade.

Both “Hercules” and “Xena” actually fell in the ratings from the prior week, as did “Star Trek.” “Hercules” dropped 2% to 6.1, which was still 11% ahead of last year’s pace. “Xena” dipped 3% to 5.6, but grew 4% from the same week a year ago. “Star Trek” tumbled 11% to 4.8, off 20% from last year.

But strong performances in the February sweeps for the action pack coupled with steep declines for “Star Trek” finally forced the sci-fi series to take a back seat for the season to Universal’s two ancient Greek action heroes. “Hercules” and “Xena” also get ratings boosts from airing on the WGN Superstation as well as in syndication.

In other weekly action, All American’ s “Baywatch” was flat at 4.1, and MGM’s “The Outer Limits” rose 3% to 3.4. Par’s “Viper” led the frosh weeklies, gaining 7% to 2.9. All American’s “Sinbad” faded 14% to 2.5 and tied with Rysher’s “FX … The Series,” which dipped 4%. Eyemark Entertainment’s “Psi Factor” plummeted 17% to 2.4 and tied with Twentieth TV’s “Two,” which was flat.

Strips were disrupted once again by NCAA basketball. In fact Warner Bros. Domestic TV Distribution’s “Rosie O’Donnell,” Par’s “Entertainment Tonight” and MTM’s “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” were the only shows in their respective genres to gain ground for the week.

“Rosie” was the only surviving talkshow to improve after its three-week slide, rising 11% to a second-place 5.1. In the metered markets, “Rosie” jumped an astounding 58% from its lead-in, the most of any talker by far.

King World’s “Oprah” still led the talk pack, as usual, despite falling 5% to 8.0. Par’s “Montel Williams” was third, falling 7% to 4.2. Columbia TriStar TV Distribution’s “Ricki Lake” had the worst weekly drop for a talker, plunging 13% to 3.5.

Coverage of the basketball tournament on CBS skewed ratings for the access magazines for a second week. Par’s “Entertainment Tonight” was preempted or delayed in 13 top markets, but still gained 2% to 5.7. King World’s “Inside Edition” fell 4% to 4.5. Warner Bros.’ “Extra” was flat at 3.7. Par’s “Hard Copy,” in reruns, fell 5% to 3.5, and King World’s “American Journal” was flat at 3.2.

MTM’s “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” was alone among the top dozen off-nets to increase for the week, jumping 12% to 1.9, its season high. Buena Vista TV’s “Home Improvement” tumbled 7% to 9.3. CTTD’s “Seinfeld” lost 3% to 7.7, and Twentieth TV’s “The Simpsons” eased 1% to 7.0. CTTD’s “Mad About You” also weakened 2% to 4.6.

At the top of the chart, King World’s “Wheel of Fortune” fell 2% to 11.8, while “Jeopardy!” slowed 1% to 9.7.

Par’s “Real TV,” which had led the new firstrun strips for the past several months, dropped 12% to 3.0 and tied Twentieth TV’s “Access Hollywood,” which fell 3%. Worldvision’s “Judge Judy” was flat at 2.1, but rose 21% from its metered-market lead-in. CTTD’s “Dating/Newlywed Hour” eked out a 7% increase from its season low the week before to 1.5, but still fell 14% from its metered-market lead-in.

Warner Bros.’ frosh talker, “In Person With Maureen O’Boyle,” which will be shutting down production this month, fell 22% to 1.4 and plunged 23% from lead-in. Warner Bros. says it will decide the strip’s fate after the May sweeps, but sources say the talkshow’s staff is already shopping resumes. Rysher’s “Strange Universe” inched up 8% to 1.4 and matched its season high, but still fell 32% from metered-market lead-in. Tribune’s “Bzzz!” lost 8% to 1.2, off 27% from its metered-market lead-in.

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