Seven and Nine continue to struggle with their prime-time news format experiments.
Almost a desert last night. Not even The Block on its own could improve it. Seven started a new observational reality series called Coastwatch — it did OK with 1.22 million national viewers. Tonight the second T20 game might fill some of the gap, but not much. Monday morning sees Ten broadcast Super Bowl 48 from New Jersey. Once the final T20 game is over, that’s the end of summer — and the footie (NRL and AFL) is only weeks away. I can feel a meat pie coming on!
The Block naturally did better without My Kitchen Rules on Seven and averaged 1.753 million national/ 1.220 million metro/ 533,000 regional viewers. That was its best effort for the week, understandable with My Kitchen Rules competing for viewers. But The Block dominated the night and its ratings in week one has seen the audience this year up 28% higher this year against 2013, with solid gains in Perth (from a low base, the program is now doing quite well) and solid gains in the demos. The audience for My Kitchen Rules is also higher. The Block will be running four times a week (Mondays through Thursdays) for much of its 10 weeks. My Kitchen Rules is Mondays to Wednesdays.
Some observations: Nine’s Today has started surprisingly slowly this week (so far only one of four mornings registered 300,000 metro viewers) as a result, Seven’s Sunrise has beaten it by a wide margin. In the evening, A Current Affair has gone from being a ratings rooster at 6.30pm and beating Seven’s Today Tonight for most of 2013, to being a ratings feather duster, easily beaten by the returning Home and Away. As a result of the shift, the truncated version of Today Tonight led in by Seven News from 6.30pm, has beaten Nine’s news from 6.30pm (That’s also a bit of a mystery, but the stand in host of Today Tonight, Nick Etchells is looking quite solid). Seven News has had good wins over Nine News nationally and across the metro markets this week. We will know more next week, when Home and Away settles down to the daily grind of the soap it is. But if A Current Affair continues to be beaten at 7pm, Nine might be the one with a tough decision to make about its 6-7 pm hour of news and current affairs, not Seven, which has already made the move to switch 6pm readers in Sydney and cut Today Tonight back to around 20 minutes. That might prove to be a patchwork solution in the long run, but the final shape of the 6-7pm news and current affairs hour isn’t ended.
Network channel share:
Network main channels:
SBS ONE (4.7%)
Top 5 digital channels:
Top 10 national programs:
The Block (Nine) — 1.753 million
Seven News — 1.744 million
Home and Away (Seven) — 1.548 million
Nine News — 1.547 million
Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.316 million
7.30 (ABC1) — 1.296 million
ABC News — 1.272 million
Coastwatch (Seven) — 1.222 million
QI repeat (ABC1) — 1.064 million
A Current Affair (Nine) — 1.055 million
Top metro programs:
The Block (Nine) — 1.220 million
Seven News — 1.128 million
Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.051 million
Nine News — 1.023 million
Losers: No one, really.Metro news and current affairs: