Jerry Springer To Become TV's 'Judge Jerry?'

Oct 25, 2018

Will there be order in the court?

Jerry Springer, whose daytime talk show ceased production last spring when the CW network acquired his reruns for afternoon broadcast, is talking to NBCUniversal about hosting a daytime courtroom show called Judge Jerry.

Like Judge Judy and The People's Court, the former Cincinnati attorney, mayor and news anchor would preside over small-claim cases.

A 1999 'Jerry Springer Show' publicity photo when producers promised to curb fighting and chair throwing after the show beat 'Oprah Winfrey' in daytime ratings.
Credit Courtesy Jerry Springer Show

So Springer, who had considered re-entering politics by running for Ohio governor over the past two decades, could become a judge instead -- a TV judge -- say several TV trade publications.

Will he have trouble keeping the gallery from cheering "Jerr-Ree! Jerr-Ree!"? Will his litigants seek to resolve their issues with flailing fists and feet, as they've done on his daytime tabloid talk show for two decades?

Will Judge Jerry employ more bailiffs and security officers than all the other TV judge shows put together?

Springer, who turns 75 in February, has taped a pilot presentation for NBCUniversal, which produced The Jerry Springer Show syndicated show, says Broadcasting & Cable. Some station group owners have seen the tape for the show, being developed for fall 2019, the report says.

Judge Jerry would be taped in Stamford, CT, where he did his daytime talk show along with Maury (Povich) and Steve Wilkos.

Springer started at WLWT-TV in 1982 reading a nightly commentary.
Credit Courtesy WLWT-TV

Springer came to Cincinnati in 1968 after earning a law degree from Northwestern University, and working on Sen. Robert Kennedy's 1968 presidential campaign. After Kennedy's assassination, he joined a Cincinnati law firm, where he spearheaded Ohio's effort to lower the voting age from 21 to 18. He ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 1970, then won a seat on Cincinnati City Council in 1971, and later served as mayor.

He joined WLWT-TV as a political commentator in 1982, after an unsuccessful run for Ohio governor against Ted Celeste. Springer was named Channel 5's news co-anchor with Norma Rashid in 1984, and remained primary male anchor when his daytime talk show started at WLWT-TV on Sept. 30, 1991.

Reds yearbook advertisement in 1990 by WLWT-TV, the Reds' flagship TV station.
Credit Courtesy WLWT-TV

The Jerry Springer Show was launched when Multimedia Entertainment owned Cincinnati's NBC station. A year later, Springer moved to Chicago NBC affiliate WMAQ-TV in a deal that put the show on all NBC owned-and-operated stations.  Springer later moved to New York, and then to Connecticut.

In 1999, Jerry Springer was the nation's No. 1 daytime series, and the first talk show to beat Oprah Winfrey in more than a decade.  In 2002, Jerry Springer was No. 1 on TV Guide’s list of the "Worst Shows In The History Of Television."

Judge Jerry?

Don't get your legal briefs in a bunch betting against him. He's parlayed 27 years hosting TV's trashiest show into a spot on Dancing with the Stars; hosting America's Got Talent, the Game Show network's Baggage and Investigation Discovery's Tabloid show; starring in a parody movie (Ringmaster); inspiring  a musical (Jerry Springer: The Opera); and making TV guest appearances on everything from The Simpsons and The X-Files to Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, George Lopez, Roseanne, Married with Children and Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!