‘Celebrity Wheel of Fortune’ Sees Significant Ratings Increase as Vanilla Ice, Andy Richter Compete

by Joe Rutland

“Celebrity Wheel of Fortune” bumped up its ratings from last week on Sunday night as Vanilla Ice and Andy Richter were part of it.

The celebrity version of the popular game show is hosted by Pat Sajak and Vanna White. “Celebrity Wheel of Fortune” pretty much follows the same rules as its syndicated TV version.

But Pat and Vanna get a chance to show off their work on ABC in a primetime slot.

OK, Outsiders, let’s look at the numbers and hope we don’t get asked to solve a puzzle.

‘Celebrity Wheel of Fortune’ Saw Two-Point Increase In Ratings This Week

In a TVLine article from Monday, “Celebrity Wheel of Fortune” collected 4.5 million viewers with a .60 rating. That’s quite an uptick from its first-week numbers. Besides Ice and Richter, actress-comedian Caroline Rhea was part of the celebrity contestants, too.

Last week, according to TV Insider, the game show posted a 0.4 rating and 3.76 million viewers. That’s off from the finale from last season which posted a 0.73 rating with 5/71 million viewers. It had an average 0.91 rating with 6.52 million.

By the way, do you want to know what was the most-watched TV show on Sunday night? Easy-peasy. “Sunday Night Football” with Tampa Bay quarterback Tom Brady returning to Gillette Stadium and facing his old coach, Bill Belichick, and team, the New England Patriots. It pulled in 28.5 million viewers for NBC.

So while some watched the NFL clash, others chose to give “Celebrity Wheel of Fortune” a spin from their homes.

Slight Differences In Celebrity-Focused Show Appear From Regular ‘Wheel’

As we mentioned, Outsiders, this nighttime celebrity version pretty much follows along with the old-school “Wheel of Fortune” you are used to seeing.

Well, what’s different?

An article from TVOverMind.com makes clear that prize money won goes to charity.

All celebrities have a charity of their choice and their winnings go there.

What about being as serious as the regular game with contestants? Sajak talked a little bit about how things are a little different in an interview with United Press International.

He said the set looks a little more “prime-timey, whatever that means.” The longtime host also said there’s going to be a different vibe on there, too.

“We want (the contestants) to play a good, solid game, but we’re mainly there to have fun,” Sajak said. It’ll be a little lighter in attitude.”

In the days of the COVID-19 pandemic, viewers being able to see “Wheel” might help. Sajak addressed this, too, with UPI.

‘Wheel of Fortune’ is kind of a sign of normalcy for people; they were very glad to have us back on the air,” he said.

Also, this celebrity version can run 60 minutes, 30 minutes longer than usual episodes.