How ‘The View’ Completely Reversed Last Season’s 5 Percent Viewer Drop-Off

“The whole landscape has changed,” senior executive producer Hilary Estey McLoughlin tells TheWrap

Last Updated: April 14, 2017 @ 9:00 AM

“The View” is looking up this season — five percent above last year, to be exact.

Season-to-date, the ABC News talker has averaged 2.910 million total viewers per episode, according to Nielsen. That’s just 3,000 overall audience members shy of the 2014-2015 average.

Between those two runs, in 2015-2016, the daytime series brought in 2.757 million viewers.

So, what happened then — or what’s happening now? Senior executive producer Hilary Estey McLoughlin, who came aboard in the role in August 2015, credits her hosts for the good fortune. Oh yeah, and President Trump, too.

While daytime television tends to be more entertainment-oriented than news and information-oriented, “The View” pivoted early when all the 2016 insanity started.

“As the election started to heat up and the interest level was growing exponentially, we saw that trend,” McLoughlin told TheWrap.

They have yet to look back.

“The whole landscape has changed,” she said of the prominence of political talk. “When you start talking other things, it just seems like they’re irrelevant or not important enough.”

And that’s not necessarily unique to “The View” — McLoughlin cited the change-up in late-night positioning as further evidence of the evolution. Just ask those over at CBS’ “Late Show”– or even better (because it’s worse), NBC’s “Tonight” — how this whole Trump’s First 100 Days thing is working out for them, politics aside. Trevor Noah could attest to the same approach and results over on cable.

While McLoughlin (plus EP Candi Carter and co-executive producer Brian Teta, of course) surely played a role in Barbara Walters’ 20-year-old show’s turnaround, she’s happy to credit the Whoopi Goldbergs and Joy Behars of her world.

After all, it is the hosts that pick “The View’s” “Hot Topics,” not producers. Sort of.

“We give them a list of like 60 topics, and they pick what they’re interested in, have conviction about, are passionate about and disagree about,” McLoughlin said.

Regardless of who is truly steering the ship, together, they’ve all got a responsibility to the show’s loyal viewers.

“A lot of women actually watch the show to get news and to be informed,” McLoughlin said, “and to be able to be part of the conversation with their friends, and their husbands and their family.”

That’s a challenge everyone over there is up for.

“It’s a really interesting time, and we’re perfectly positioned to be able to take advantage of it,” she concluded.