Daytime TV: 'Dr. Oz,' 'Dr. Phil' Winning in a Post-'Oprah' Market

CBS Television Distribution

The doctor-hosted talk shows have both benefited from the end of Winfrey’s show.

When Oprah Winfrey ended her run as daytime TV's ratings queen in May, it was Dr. Oz who received most of the key time-period and station upgrades. However, based on the first few weeks of the new syndication season, it's Dr. Phil who has cured viewers' post-Oprah angst.

Thanks in part to premiere-week shows featuring Casey Anthony's parents, Dr. Phil ratings have rocketed to a 3.9, with a (metered market) 10 percent share of the viewing audience, according to Nielsen. That's a 56 percent jump from its opening week a year ago, doubling the ratings of its lead-in and nearly matching Winfrey's ratings a year ago. Even more impressive, Dr. Phil is tops among talk shows in the key afternoon demo (women 25-to-54).

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Judge Judy remains the highest-rated afternoon show with a 6.6 rating, up 53 percent from her first week last year. Dr. Oz was second, jumping 21 percent from its 2010 premiere week, while Ellen was up 10 percent (her best premiere week ever). Bringing up the rear is newcomer Anderson, from Warner Bros. Telepictures, which debuted with a (metered market) 1.2 rating and 4 percent share, though it jumped 25 percent in its second week.

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Katz Media's Bill Carroll notes that the Anderson Cooper talker is performing poorly in big cities, averaging only a 2 percent share in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago (where it is on relatively weak stations). But stations he surveyed are showing patience with the newsman turned lifestyle host. Says Carroll, "They know it will take time for him to find his voice and the right balance between what he is known for and what he is hoping to bring to the audience."