Eileen is over.  Who will be the next queen of daytime television?

Eileen is over. Who will be the next queen of daytime television?

Deciding who will fill that space comes at a time when daytime TV – like all TV itself – turns quickly. Finding a replacement will not be easy. Despite the controversy over reports of toxic work culture, “Eileen” remained one of the most popular talk shows of the day until its conclusion on Thursday.
The show — which has featured celebrity interviews, dancing, and scaring people since 2003 — averaged 1.4 million viewers for the 2021-2022 season. This outperformed many competitors, including The Kelly Clarkson Show.
Elaine was also very profitable. The program has reportedly earned about $35 million a year in recent years for its distributor Warner Bros. Television, according to Forbes. (Warner Bros. Television, like CNN, is owned by Warner Bros. Discovery.)

DeGeneres achieved success after the height of popularity of daytime television, led by cultural sensation Oprah Winfrey. But those days might be a thing of the past as viewing habits and the heart of streaming have changed, well, everything.

“[Ellen] One of the main stores in the mall is daytime television, Robert Thompson, professor of television and popular culture at Syracuse University, told CNN Business. “I think in many ways, it might be kind of the last in that era.”

That doesn’t mean “daytime television is going to go away”, Thompson added, because many shows are still getting big, but things aren’t what they used to be.

“It represents that generation when daytime television was still a broadcast television phenomenon,” he said.

So the question might not be “Who is the next Ellen?” Rather, “Could there be another Eileen?”

who is next?

There is one clear choice to replace “Ellen”: Kelly Clarkson.

The Kelly Clarkson Show was a huge hit when it debuted in 2019 and is still very popular. Her ratings came behind “Eileen” this season, with an average of 1.3 million viewers.

Clarkson is also set to take over the DeGeneres time slot on NBC stations, so she literally takes her place.

“Kelly Clarkson is doing really well,” Thompson said. “I think it might be what she calls the crown prince.”

Its rise makes sense. Clarkson created a lavish daytime talk show that blended interviews and Clarkson’s vocals, helping to spread the clips and court viewers.

Clarkson told CNN Business in 2019 that she believes her show is a success because the world “craves stories with humor, heart, and heroes they can relate to.”
The success of the show so far is remarkable. The daytime TV genre is full of failed talk shows from the likes of Harry Connick Jr. and Queen Latifah and even seasoned interviewers like Katie Couric and Meredith Ferra.

So Clarkson and other newcomers Tamron Hall and Drew Barrymore — who average about 700,000 to 1 million viewers this season — have their work cut out for them if they want to make the impact — and money — that Ellen has made.

What’s Next?

What complicates the succession plans for “Ellen” is that today’s viewers can watch anything, at any time, so it’s really hard to tell them apart.

However, Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein — co-chairs of Demar Mercury at Lionsgate, which distributes and produces group programming — told CNN Business that despite all the changes in the television industry, daytime still counts.

Kelly Clarkson's new talk show was a huge hit.  Here's why this is such a big problem

“Our daytime productions can still be profitable, despite having fewer viewers available across all television screens due to audience dispersal,” Bernstein said in an email. “Our primary buyers are TV stations, and it is imperative that they have solid daytime schedules leading to very profitable late afternoon newscasts.”

Echoing his colleague, Marcus said in an email that the future of daytime television “isn’t that simple” but that the key to making it profitable is “to collect eyeballs wherever they are – whether it’s broadcast, digital, YouTube, Facebook or other platforms.”

Obviously, finding the right person to lead the show.

“Most importantly, you need to find this rare diamond in the rough that daytime viewers want to see,” Marcus said.

2022-06-01 17:19:00

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