‘View’ Triage: Has Raven-Symone Stopped the Bleeding at ABC’s Talk Show?

The new co-host is generating social buzz, but has she helped stabilize show’s ratings drop after Rosie O’Donnell’s abrupt exit?

Last Updated: July 14, 2015 @ 6:47 PM

Raven-Symone’s hiring as co-host on “The View” in June prompted tweets such as “Ooooh LAWDT, they are letting Raven have a permanent place at the table. My eyes are already rolling around uncontrollably.”

Eyes may be rolling, but they’re not leaving “The View” — at least not as fast as they had been. Since joining the show June 10, the former star of “The Cosby Show” has made headlines with exchanges on the show in which she discussed getting hand cramps from signing so many autographs and her theories on Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. The show’s declining ratings, meanwhile, have shown signs of leveling off.

Over the first 40 weeks of its current run — Sept. 22, 2014 through June 29, 2015 — “The View” is down 8.7 percent in total viewers season-to-date from last year.

The news is worse in the key women 25-54 demographic, where the ABC talker is down 12.9 percent versus the season prior. Among women 18-49, the demo that ABC likely targeted with the recent addition of Raven-Symone as a co-host, the 18th season of “The View” is down 13.1 percent versus the previous season.

Season 17 averaged 3.078 million total viewers, with 690,000 fitting into the key 25-54 demographic, 520,000 coming from the smaller 18-49 demo. This season is down to an average of 2.810 million total audience members, 601,000 from the main demo and 452,000 women 18-49.

The show has, however, performed less poorly with Raven-Symone than it did without her.

“The View” was down 8.5 percent among women 25-54 and 11 percent with women 18-49 through Feb. 12 — when newly returned co-host Rosie O’Donnell departed abruptly. In total viewers, it was down 3.8 percent season-over-season.

Without O’Donnell and before Raven-Symone, “The View” had a rough go of it. From Feb. 13 through June 28, the show was down 15.2 and 17.7 percent, respectively, and minus 13.5 percent in total viewers from the same time period last season.

Since Raven-Symone’s arrival, the ratings bleeding has slowed, but the losses are still in the double digit range. From June 10 to-date, the show is down 10 percent in women 25-54, 10.1 percent in women 18-49, and 10 percent in total viewers. Since her official hiring, “The View” has also aired one week of encore episodes, which is counted in this average.

Raven-Symone will remain a member of the show’s panel next season, along with moderator Whoopi Goldberg. With co-host Rosie Perez having announced her departure and panelist Nicolle Wallace expected to leave, comedian Michelle Collins has been added as a co-host for the “The View’s” next and 19th season, TheWrap reported exclusively.

Actor Molly Sims is expected to join as a regular guest co-host.