Have you heard? Ellen DeGeneres is moving to Channel 9!
Her talk show switches from 3 p.m. weekdays on KCTV-5 to 4 p.m. on KMBC, Channel 9, starting Monday. If that’s news to you, don’t blame KMBC, which has been relentlessly promoting its acquisition of “Ellen” on TV and billboards.
What’s the big deal? Channel 9 is no doubt hoping DeGeneres and her celeb guests will drive more viewers to its early-evening newscasts.
While Ellen is no Oprah — Winfrey was a 4 p.m. ratings powerhouse on KMBC until she ended the show in 2011 — the smart money is that DeGeneres will outperform the show she’s replacing on Channel 9, “Dr. Oz.”
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In last May’s sweeps period, “Dr. Oz” finished fourth at 4 p.m., behind KCTV-5 news, “Judge Judy” on Fox 4 and news on KSHB, Channel 41.
At 3 p.m., “Ellen” on KCTV was No. 1, with “Dr. Phil” on KMBC a not-far-behind No. 2. (Nationally, Phil McGraw’s program was the highest-rated daytime talk show last season. His show is still on at 3 p.m., but now on KCTV-5.)
Dr. Oz, meanwhile, can still be found elsewhere on Channel 9’s schedule, and Rachael Ray, who’s exiting Channel 9, can now be found on Fox 4. And KSHB has a new show at 6:30 p.m.
That’s all part of the morass of changes likely to confuse KC viewers as the fall TV season gets underway. Here’s a rundown of what’s happening on the four major network affiliates (starting Monday unless otherwise noted):
“Dr. Oz” can now be seen at 9 a.m. on Channel 9. Fox 4 has picked up “Rachael Ray” and will air it at 11 a.m.
A talk show called “The Real” premieres at 10 a.m. Sept. 15 on Channel 9 (replacing “Bethenny,” canceled after one season). “The Real,” featuring five women of color, looks similar to “The View.” It’s rolling out nationwide following a four-week test run on seven stations.
“Queen Latifah” moves from 2 p.m. to 1 p.m. on Fox 4, replacing “Steve Harvey.” Harvey’s talk show will now air at 3 p.m. on Channel 9, following the new “Meredith Vieira” talker at 2 p.m. (replacing the canceled “Katie Couric”).
The new “Celebrity Name Game,” hosted by Craig Ferguson, premieres at 2 p.m. Sept. 22 on Fox 4.
Channel 41 is moving “Let’s Ask America” from 6:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. The game show has a new host, comedian and former MTV personality Bill Bellamy. “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,” with new host Terry Crews, switches to 2 p.m. on sister station KMCI, 38 the Spot.
Channel 41’s new show at 6:30 is “The List,” produced by Scripps, the station’s owner. The newsmagazine uses lists to talk about pop culture, consumer issues and news of the day. Stations that air “The List” insert local segments. On KSHB, those will be handled by former Channel 41 reporter Mitch Weber.
Meanwhile, another Scripps-developed program, news show “The Now KC” (4 p.m. on 41), now has a permanent host, Justin Wilfon. He comes from KJRH, the Scripps station in Tulsa, Okla.
In late-night news, “TMZ” is back at 11 p.m. on Fox 4, replacing the canceled “Arsenio Hall.” That’s followed by “Seinfeld” at 11:30, “The Middle” at midnight and “Raising Hope” at 12:30 a.m.