Olympics’ First Week Slams Syndies
Most of syndication stalled in the session ending August 1, which marked the first full week of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. In addition some strips cleared on ABC affiliates did not air on July 27 due to the House committee hearings on the January 6 Capitol riot and on July 29 due to coverage of the NBA draft.
In anticipation of lower numbers many shows were re-titled as specials during the quadrennial games. Accordingly their week’s ratings will not be included in their full season averages.
The re-named Jeopardy-Olym (4.4 live plus same day national Nielsen rating, down 6% from the week before) featured the highly anticipated stint of guest-host LeVar Burton. That still earned the long-running game show –now in its 37th season — the week’s second biggest rating of any syndicated program.
Most of the top-tier talk shows were also designated as “Olympic” specials.
The re-classified Live with Kelly and Ryan (1.4, down 18%) torched the talkers for a 12th straight week, followed by reruns of Dr Phil-Olym (1.2, down 14%) and the un-retitled Maury (new all-time low 0.8, down 11%). Repeats of Wendy Williams-Olym (0.7, down 13%) and un-retitled Steve Wilkos (0.6, down 14%) were next in line.
On the positive side Extra (0.6, steady) was one of the few to avoid any declines and delivered the week’s second highest ratings among the traditional entertainment magazines, behind only Entertainment Tonight-Olym (1.8, down 10%).