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"Wanda Sykes" premiere falls short of "SNL"

Comedienne Wanda Sykes, star of the new program "The Wanda Sykes Show" discusses the show with executive producer Eddie Feldmann (L) at the Fox Summer Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena, California August 6, 2009. REUTERS/Fred Prouser

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - 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 a preliminary 2.2 household rating among the top “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.” The veteran sketch show, featuring Taylor Swift as host and musical guest, hit a season high 5.0 rating.

“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 on Saturday, her show could end up struggling to tie “MadTV.”

Lopez will start his TBS gig Monday.

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