Weekend newsmag hours sweep up gains

'ET' led trend followed by 'Access Hollywood'

The first weekend of the May sweep came up big for the weekly hours, with four of the top shows up by double digits vs. the previous week.

“Entertainment Tonight Weekend” led the trend, up 16% from the week before to a 3.6, its highest rating in nine weeks. The episode featured a look at Oprah Winfrey’s “Hi Gorgeous” tour, a self help/women’s empowerment workshop making stops in U.S. cities.

In second place, “Access Hollywood Weekend” was up 38% to a 2.2 rating, and in third place, “Extra Weekend” was up 17% to a 2.1.

For the first time, the top three weekly hours were all entertainment newsmagazines.

At number four, “Andromeda” was up 12% to 1.9, tying with “The West Wing,” a rookie show down 5% to 1.9.

Sci-fi program “Mutant X” was up 13% to 1.8, tied with “Stargate SG 1” (down 5%).

On the negative side, “ER,” which is normally in the top tier of weekly hours, hit a new low for the season, down 24% to a 1.6.

In the battle of the weekly movie review shows, “Hot Ticket” was untouchable, rising above the long-running “Ebert and Roeper” with a 46% week to week increase and a 1.9 rating.

Paramount’s “Hot Ticket” matched its highest ratings of the season and, for the first time since last November, beat “Ebert & Roeper,” which was down 24% to a 1.6.

Strips hold steady

During the week, which included two sweep days, most of the strips saw little change.

“Dr. Phil” and “Ellen Degeneres Show” were the only two of the 15 talk shows that were up week-to-week.

Four talk shows were down and nine were unchanged.

“Dr. Phil” was up 6% to 5.4, its highest rating in eight weeks and up 15% over last year at this time. The strip saw the largest year-to-year increase of any talkshow this week.

“Ellen Degeneres Show,” the top rated rookie this season, was also up 6% for this week to a 1.9. “Oprah Winfrey” (6.5) was down 2% week-to-week but up 8% vs. last year.

Also in daytime, the court shows offered mixed performances. Three were up, three were down, one was unchanged.

The number one court show, “Judge Judy” was up 4% to a 5.0 rating, the highest rating for the straight-shooting judge in eight weeks.

Other winners were “People’s Court” (up 4% to 2.4) and “Judge Hatchett” (up 5% to a 2.1).