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Glenn Dyer’s TV ratings: The Block flops

The Nine Network has backed a very expensive turkey, with the new season of The Block failing to attract an audience.

The Nine Network is in trouble  with its very expensive first 2014 edition of The Block — it was flattened by Seven’s My Kitchen Rules which had more than 600,000 extra viewers nationally and over 450,000 in metro markets.If this continues, the popularity of one of Nine’s rating staples will be in doubt. The whacking last night was significant because this series Nine has tried to get into the competition as quickly as possible rather than spend time establishing this year’s storyline and the contestants (which had led to a slow start to the season, with audiences slow to build). That has failed in the face of nicely done episodes of My Kitchen Rules with the goodies and baddies appearing very early on.

As well, Nine’s  experiment with placing A Current Affair at 7pm has failed for a second night as Home and Away again ate it. And it was a full Today Tonight (not some news and 20 minutes of Today Tonight as on Monday night) that clearly beat Nine’s second half of the news from 6.30pm. All this was not supposed to happen, if you listened or read the TV season forecasts (nicely fed by Nine’s PRs and management) earlier this month. If it hadn’t been for the new episode of The Big Bang Theory (which out rated The Block) and the repeat of the same program (which also had more viewers than The Block), Nine would have been even more embarrassed, just as the movie repeat, The Blindside, saved it from a bigger loss to Seven. Now to have a repeat of a popular US comedy beat The Block is embarrassing — even more so when you look at the cost per episode — $1 million or more for The Block, a few thousand, maybe 10 grand for Big Bang (its big expense came last year in its original broadcast on Nine). The only encouraging thing for Nine was that The Block held all but around 20,000 of its national audience last night from Monday. My Kitchen Rules slipped 77,000, but when that’s from nearly 2.4 million, it doesn’t matter. The Block made no impression whatsoever on My Kitchen Rules.

Ten was beaten (overall and the main channels) by the ABC — situation normal, as was the weak performance by Studio 10 (back to 34,000 from 74,000 on Monday); Wake Up averaged 32,000. Who cares? Overall, Seven won the metros and Nine had another close win in the regions, thanks to The Big Bang Theory.

Tonight it’s My Kitchen Rules up against the T20 on Nine between Australia and England. That means The Block has the night off, as does The Biggest Loser on Ten. The Block returns Thursday night with an open run. That will be another test for the program. Will absent friends return?

Network channel share:

  1. Seven (32.0%)
  2. Nine (27.7%)
  3. ABC (20.1%)
  4. Ten (15.5%)
  5. SBS (4.7%)

Network main channels:

  1. Seven (25.3%)
  2. Nine (23.0%)
  3. ABC 1 (14.7%)
  4. Ten (10.4%)
  5. SBS ONE (3.7%)

Top 5 digital channels: 

  1. 7TWO (3.6%)
  2. 7mate (3.2%)
  3. ABC 2 (2.9%)
  4. GO (2.8%)
  5. Eleven (2.7%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. My Kitchen Rules (Seven)  —  2.301 million
  2. The Big Bang Theory (Nine) — 1.842 million
  3. Seven News — 1.799 million
  4. Home and Away (Seven) — 1.768 million
  5. The Big Bang Theory repeat (Nine) — 1.756 million
  6. Nine News — 1.675 million
  7. The Block (Nine) — 1.674 million
  8. Winners & Losers (Seven) — 1.548 million
  9. Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.530 million
  10. ABC News — 1.300 million

Top metro programs:

  1. My Kitchen Rules (Seven)  —  1.605 million
  2. The Big Bang Theory (Nine) — 1.272 million
  3. Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.220 million
  4. The Big Bang Theory  repeat (Nine) — 1.205 million
  5. Seven News — 1.180 million
  6. Nine News — 1.141 million
  7. Nine News 6.30 Home and Away (Seven)   — 1.141 million
  8. The Block (Nine) — 1.131 million
  9. Winners & Losers (Seven) — 1.024 million

Losers:  Nine and The Block, again. Having fewer viewers than the repeat of Big Bang should tell Nine what its core audience really thinks of The Block.

Metro news and current affairs:

  1. Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.220 million
  2. Seven News  — 1.180 million
  3. Nine News  — 1.141 million
  4. Nine News 6.30  — 1.141 million
  5. A Current Affair (Nine)  — 995,000
  6. ABC News — 889,000
  7. 7.30 (ABC1) — 885,000
  8. ABC News   —  949,000
  9. Ten Eyewitness News — 646,000
  10. The Project (Ten) — 440,000

Metro morning TV:

  1. Sunrise (Seven)  — 347,000
  2. Today (Nine)  —  279,000
  3. The Morning Show (Seven) — 182,000
  4. Mornings (Nine) — 120,000
  5. News Breakfast (ABC1, 64,000 + 39,000 on News24) — 103,000
  6. Studio 10 (Ten)   — 34,000
  7. Wake Up (Ten) — 32,000

Top five pay TV channels:

  1. Fox 8  (2.6%)
  2. TVHITS!  (2.4%)
  3. LifeStyle (2.1%)
  4. Disney, A&E  (1.9%)
  5. Fox Classics  (1.7%)

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. Celebrity Come Dine With Me (LifeStyle)  —  98,000
  2. The Simpsons (Fox 8) —  79,000
  3. Family Guy (Fox 8) —  63,000
  4. Good Luck Charlie (Disney)  —  56,000
  5. Futurama (Fox 8) —  55,000

*Data © OzTAM Pty Limited 2013. The data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) in whole or in part, without the prior written consent of OzTAM. (All shares on the basis of combined overnight 6pm to midnight all people.) and network reports.

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