Jane Pauley Off to Shaky Start

The less-than-stellar debut of "The Jane Pauley Show" (search) — the most talked-about new daytime talk show — is a head scratcher.

Early ratings for the first two days of the program indicate "The Jane Pauley Show" has lost viewers, dropping more than 17 percent from the first show to the second.

"It's never good getting that much attention," says Mediaweek Online's Marc Berman. "It's better to be under the radar, expectations may be just too high."

More troubling is that the ratings for "Jane" are lower than the show that's on before it, called a lead-in. The comparison is generally a benchmark that TV programmers take seriously when judging the success of a new show.

The big question is if the ratings will continue to slide or level off.

"Logically, no one should have expected her to be huge, but with all the spin and hype, she should have been able to hold the lead-in," says Berman. "After two days, the early numbers are disappointing."

Officials at NBC-Universal, the studio that produces "Jane," say they are happy with the debut's ratings.

But the shaky opening-days ratings for "Jane" are roughly the same as the debuts of "Ellen," (search) "The Other Half" and "The Martin Short Show."

Only "Ellen" was able to eventually build audience and survive.