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“Judge Judy” opens wide lead at halfway mark of February sweep

“Judge Judy” opens wide lead at halfway mark of February sweep

Entertainment Mags See Oscar Boosts

Review based on a national syndicated rating report for the week ending February 17.

The Nielsen verdict at the midpoint of the February sweep (January 31 – February 27) was extremely favorable to syndication heavy hitter Judge Judy. “Judy” (chart topping 7.8 live plus same day national Nielsen rating) attracted more than 11 million viewers on average each day for the session ending February 17.

 The hugely popular court show also surged 22% year to year and opened up a virtually insurmountable lead over all syndicated programs in the sweep while ranking at No. 1 in the household ratings for a milestone 32 straight weeks.

In talk, Dr. Phil (3.3, up 3% from the week before) matched its highest rating of the season and pulled away from the field, leading its category for the 128thweek in a row .

In the pitched battle for sole possession of second place, Live with Kelly and Ryan (2.3, steady) overtook Ellen DeGeneres (2.2, down 8%).

Filling out the five biggest talkers list were Maury (1.5, unchanged) and Steve Harvey’s Steve (season high 1.4, steady), which mushroomed 56% over last year – the greatest annual improvement for any show in the genre over the Winter Olympic adjusted February 2018 sweep.

In magazine action Access (season high 1.4, up 8%) had the distinction of being the only entrant in positive territory, leaping 17% annually and passing TMZ (1.3, down 7%). Seeing a huge year to year spike was Extra (1.1), which soared 57% annually – the greatest increase of any magazine over February 2018.

Meanwhile the traditional entertainment magazines took home sharply higher ratings in the 56 metered markets with their next day coverage of the 91stAcademy Awards on Monday, February 25.

Entertainment Tonight (4.0/7 primary run metered market average, up 18% from its year-ago time period numbers) took first place in the category. Others in the group having big nights at the Oscars included Access (2.0/4, up 5% over January, 2018 due to Winter Olympics in February time periods), Extra (1.8/4 up 13% over January, 2018), Daily Mail TV (0.8/2, up 14%) and Page Six TV(0.8/2, up 14%).

Live’s After Oscars Show (3.2/11, up 23% from February 2018), which gave “Live with Kelly and Ryan” its highest single day ratings in two years, was also a spectacular Nielsen winner with next day coverage of the Academy Awards.

Returning to the weekly national ratings, Family Feud (6.8, up 1%) logged a new season high and led the game show category for a second straight week.

Also noteworthy was the off-net Dateline strip (12-week high 1.5, up 7%), which ratcheted up 25% from last year and overpowered the true crime genre for the 23rd consecutive week. Chicago P.D. was another hot performer with a 25% advance in the key W25-54 demo.

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