Arnold’s determinator of which shows thrive

Overall viewing of TV stations dropped average of 347,000 homes

NEW YORK — The dog days of early August dragged TV viewership down, but three syndicated entertainment magazines got a Nielsen boost from Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” announcement that he’s running for governor of California.

For the week of Aug. 4-10, Paramount TV’s “Entertainment Tonight” climbed 2% from the previous week to a 4.8 rating. NBC Enterprises’ “Access Hollywood” rose 9% to a 2.4 rating, and Warner Bros. TV’s “Extra” moved up 4%, also to a 2.4.

But overall viewing of TV stations for the week dropped by an average of 347,000 homes, a decline of 2% from the previous week.

In TV syndication, the rating falloffs were most noticeable in talkshows: Only two of the 14 gabfests showed any increase: “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” up 2% to a 5.4 rating, and “Crossing Over With John Edward,” up 8% to a 1.3 rating.

The Nielsen downturns were just as bad among court shows: Only one of them added more viewers from the week before, Sony Pictures TV’s “Judge Hatchett,” which grew by 6% to a 1.9 rating.