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Syndicated TV Ratings: 'Judge Judy' Ties 'Wheel Of Fortune' On Top Syndicated Ratings; Dr. Phil Tops Talk Shows

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October 12th, 2011

Judge Judy and Wheel of Fortune took the top honors in first-run syndication household ratings for the week ending September 25, and as usual Wheel of Fortune and Two and a Half Men topped her honor in viewership for the week.

The third week of the new season saw Dr. Phil remain the number one syndicated talk show. New off-net sitcom Big Bang Theory finished in fifth place in its second week in syndication.

We've entered the wacky time of year when Nielsen counts the local broadcast of the Monday Night Football games as syndicated shows and while it is syndicated to the local markets of the teams playing, Nielsen also includes the numbers from ESPN so MNF will always put them at the top of the list, pay no attention to them.

Please see notes below about changes to Nielsen syndicated show ratings measurement. The short version is that the change benefits shows with more than one daily telecast (Two and a Half Men, Judge Judy) and is a disadvantage (relative to the old measurement) for shows that only have one telecast per day (Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy).

Top 25 Syndicated Shows for the week ending October 2, 2011:

Rank Program Dist. Days HH rating Viewers (000)
1 ESPN NFL REGULAR SEASON ESP M...... 11.1 17,977
2 JUDGE JUDY CTD MTWTF.. 6.7 9,073
3 WHEEL OF FORTUNE CTD MTWTF.. 6.7 10,157
4 TWO-HALF MEN-SYN WB MTWTF.. 6.6 9,690
5 JEOPARDY CTD MTWTF.. 5.5 8,269
6 BIG BANG-SYN WB MTWTF.. 5.0 7,548
7 Family Guy-MF-SYN 2/T MTWTF.. 4.0 5,865
8 ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT CTD MTWTF.. 3.8 5,456
9 HOW I MET-MTHR-MF-SYN 2/T MTWTF.. 3.4 5,027
10 BIG BANG WKND B WB ......S 3.4 5,104
11 HOW I MET-MTHR-WK-SYN 2/T ......S 3.2 4,945
12 INSIDE EDITION CTD MTWTF.. 3.1 4,360
13 LAW & ORDER-SYN NBU ......S 3.1 4,143
14 BIG BANG WKND A WB ......S 3.1 4,579
15 Criminal Minds-SYN CTD ......S 3.1 4,226
16 DR. PHIL SHOW CTD MTWTF.. 3.0 3,866
17 DR. OZ SHOW SPT MTWTF.. 2.9 3,799
18 JUDGE JOE BROWN CTD MTWTF.. 2.8 3,889
19 THAT 70S SHOW-WK-SYN 2/T ......S 2.8 4,189
20 Futurama-SYN 2/T .....SS 2.7 3,754
21 FAMILY FEUD 2/T MTWTF.. 2.6 3,788
22 SEINFELD SPT MTWTF.. 2.6 3,832
23 MONK-SYN NBU ......S 2.6 3,537
24 TWO-HALF MEN WKND B WB ......S 2.6 3,841
25 LIVE WITH REGIS AND KELLY DAD MTWTF.. 2.5 3,237

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Why Aren't The Simpsons on This List?!

While The Simpsons repeats are available nationally its ratings are not counted in the weekly syndicated ratings because The Simpsons does not sell any national advertising in syndication.

Please note that the syndicated weekly results are delayed versus normal reporting.  While we get the broadcast and cable ratings for the prior Monday-Sunday period every Tuesday, there is an extra week of lag time with the syndicated ratings and these numbers are not for last week, but for the week before last.

More  disclaiming about recent measurement changes...

Note from Nielsen:

Previously for syndicated shows, we reported the AA (average audience) viewing averages rather than  the GAA (Gross Average Audience) viewing averages, but when Nielsen recently changed the standard reporting average audience metrics to include duplicate DVR viewing before 3am, they changed the syndicated averages as well.

Previously if someone in a Nielsen household watched Judge Judy the first time it aired and then watched the second syndicated episode, both times counted in the GAA numbers, but only one viewing counted in the average audience measure we reported. Now both viewings would count in the average audience number.

As a result, shows which previously had noticeably better GAA numbers than AA numbers are getting a boost.  That's a relative advantage for shows that have multiple airings in syndication like Two and a Half Men and Judge Judy and a relative ranking disadvantage, relative to the old measurement methodology, for shows like Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy that only have one daily airing.

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For syndicated shows which air on multiple days, the viewership shown is the average of all telecasts.

BUENA VISTA items are syndicated packages of old Disney movies.

DAD = Disney ABC Domestic Television, SPT= Sony Pictures Television, 2/T=Twentieth Television, ESP = ESPN, CTD = CBS Television Distribution.

AT = Additional Time/Telecasts, more than the typical number of episodes or time periods/week

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2011 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

 
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