'Sykes' falls short of 'SNL'

Fox's talker debuts against NBC show's season-best rating

Read the 'Wanda Sykes Show' review

Jay who?

Attention shifts this week to those other new talk shows -- Fox's "Wanda Sykes Show" and George Lopez' TBS series "Lopez Tonight."

Sykes debuted Saturday to the preliminary 2.2 household rating among metered-markets at 11 p.m.

The trick is what do you compare it to.

"Wanda Sykes" is replacing "MadTV" in the slot as Fox's alternative to NBC's "Saturday Night Live." NBC's sketch show hit a season high 5.0 rating while featuring Taylor Swift as host and musical guest.

"Sykes" was 16% higher than the "MadTV" winter average in the time period and 100% higher than the average of Spike Feresten in the slot during January and February. Note that these are averages and not premieres.

Sykes also favorably compares to the first Monday episodes of the broadcast season for Conan, Kimmel and Fallon, yet these weren't premieres either since the shows had already been in originals when the season started.

Yet if Sykes received any premiere boost last night, her show could end up struggling to tie "MadTV."

Lopez will start his TBS gig Monday.

Also Saturday night, CBS rolled out the return of "Saturday Night Fights" (3.8 million viewers, 1.7 preliminary adults 18-49 rating). These numbers do not include the main event, however, which aired outside of primetime.

Assuming an increase in the national ratings, these are decent numbers for CBS on a Saturday night, especially considering MMA was airing against college football on ABC (5 million, 1.5).