We’re finally starting to see the longterm effects of Ellen’s summer of scandal last year, and things are not looking good for the once-beloved daytime talk show host.
Despite scoring her highest rated season opener in four year last September, when everyone tuned in to see her apology following accusations of bullying and creating a toxic workplace, The Ellen DeGeneres Show has been bleeding viewers ever since.
According to data from Nielsen, Ellen’s show has lost over 1 million viewers since the 18th season premiere, plummeting from 2.6 million to 1.5 million.
The New York Times reports:
The show’s loss of more than a million viewers translates to a 43 percent decline, representing a steeper drop than any of its competitors. This TV season, ‘Ellen,’ the winner of dozens of Emmys since its start in 2003, is no longer in the same league as traditional rivals like ‘Dr. Phil’ (3.1 million) and ‘Live: With Kelly and Ryan’ (2.7 million). Now it finds itself uncomfortably close to shows hosted by Maury Povich (1.4 million), Kelly Clarkson (1.3 million), Rachael Ray (1.2 million), Tamron Hall (1.1 million) and Jerry Springer’s former security guard Steve Wilkos (1.1 million).
To go from reigning daytime talk show queen to competing with Jerry Springer’s ex-bodyguard for viewers in less than one year has definitely gotta hurt.
Of course, less viewers also means less revenue. From September to January of the 2019-20 season, Ellen raked in a cool $131 million in advertising dollars. During that same time period of the 2020-21 season, the show saw a decline of $26 million, bringing in $105 million.
But it’s not just Ellen’s daytime talk show that has taken a hit. She also hosts NBC’s prime-time Ellen’s Game of Games, which has seen a 32 percent decrease in viewership this season.
Rumors that Ellen, who is estimated to be worth around $370 million, is considering stepping away from her once-hit daytime talk show to focus on other projects have been circulating for a while now.
In 2019, she inked a deal with HBO Max to produce four shows for the streaming platform. That’s in addition to a multi-year deal she has with Discovery to produce natural history documentaries and series.
Graham Gremore is the Features Editor and a Staff Writer at Queerty. Follow him on Twitter @grahamgremore.