CBS’ ‘The Talk’ Is Closing the (Still Very Wide) Ratings Gap With ABC’s ‘The View’

·2-min read
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tony maglio ratings report banner

“The Talk” is giving us ratings reporters something to talk about — and perhaps giving “The View” a little something to be nervous about. Well, slightly nervous.

While CBS’ daytime chat fest “The Talk” is making up some ground on ABC’s “The View,” the gap between the two daytime staples is still pretty wide. “The View” is currently averaging 1 million more total daily viewers than “The Talk,” which is a lot — just not nearly as much as last season.

Season to date, “The View” is bringing in 2.4 million total viewers (ages 2+) per day, according to Nielsen. “The Talk” is 42% behind, averaging 1.4 million overall audience members with each episode. While that seems like a ton of ground to cover, “The Talk” is currently 386,000 viewers closer to “The View” than it was at this time same last year.

In Fall 2020, “The View” averaged 2.9 million total viewers over its first four weeks. The looming presidential election — and the clashes between the co-hosts over President Donald Trump — surely boosted viewership. “The Talk” averaged 1.5 million. So yes, both are down year to year — as pretty much all TV shows are — but “The View” has declined more severely: down 17% vs. “The Talk’s” 6% decline.

Among women 25-54, which both shows target, “The Talk” has narrowed the gap by 96,000 demo viewers. Again, each have declined, but to varying degrees: “The Talk” has lost 8% of viewers in that demo while “The View” dropped 27%.

Thus far this season, “The View” is the No. 1 daytime network (so not syndicated) talk show; “The Talk” is No. 5. (A pair of “Today” show hours and “GMA 3” break those up.)

All numbers in this story come from Nielsen’s “most current” data set, which includes one week of delayed viewing where available. Not that daytime talk shows get much delayed viewing, but why not?

Beyond the 2020 presidential election likely disproportionately impacting ratings for “The View,” a whole lotta drama and just as large an overhaul at “The Talk” has probably helped make things a bit more competitive in the early going this season.

Last spring, an on-camera spat between former co-host Sharon Osbourne and still-current co-host Sheryl Underwood led to Osbourne’s abrupt exit. Their fight was over Osbourne defending her friend Piers Morgan’s right to criticize Meghan Markle over things she said in a high-profile interview with Oprah Winfrey. In the summer, Elaine Welteroth and Carrie Ann Inaba also left “The Talk.” Amanda Kloots remained.

As TheWrap previously reported, Jerry O’Connell replaced Osbourne this summer as co-host. Akbar Gbajabiamila and Natalie Morales replaced Welteroth and Inaba this fall.

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