Following wide-ranging workplace misconduct allegations against talkshow host Ellen DeGeneres, the New York Times reports that The Ellen Show bled an average of 1.1 million viewers in its most recent season. Does anyone even watch this show anymore?
Judging by Nielsen data, the eponymous talk show host hemorrhaged nearly half of her average viewership, dropping from 2.6 million viewers before the allegations, down to 1.5 million post-apology and rocky return to daytime television in September 2020, during which she quipped: “If you’re watching because you love me, thank you! If you’re watching because you don’t love me, welcome!”
According to official advertising figures from ad research firm Kantar, the Times claims that Ellen might also have brought in significantly less in sponsorship revenue as well. The 2019-2020 season saw her rake in $130 million in advertising, with the research firm estimating the 2020-2021 season somewhere around $105 million.
Ellen’s ratings drop is significant even when compared to competitors; Times reports her loss in viewership is the steepest amid the pandemic. Here’s the breakdown of other talk shows in similar time slots:
- Dr. Phil: 2.5 million
- Live With Kelly and Ryan: 2.7 million
- Maury: 1.4 million
- Kelly Clarkson: 1.3 million
- Rachael Ray: 1.2 million
- Tamron Hall: 1.1 million
For comparison, newcomer on the block, The Drew Barrymore Show, hasn’t yet broken the 1 million average viewers mark, but did show a marked uptick in ratings week by week. With the show renewed for a second season, Ellen might find the playing field even more crowded by year’s end.
In her comeback monologue in September, Ellen declared that she “still wants to be the one hour where people can go to escape and laugh.” It would seem those escapees have gone looking elsewhere for a pick-me-up.
Update, 6:52 p.m.: The Times issued a correction on its original story. “An earlier version of this article misstated the average number of viewers for “Dr. Phil,” according to Nielsen. It is 2.5 million, not 3.1 million.”