Thursday night ratings

Terry Television is afraid of watching television at the moment.

If it’s not Law and Order in its various guises, it’s the CSIs and Cold Cases coming to get him. For light relief there’s Homer and Bart, but Daryl and Pauline have arrived there to waltz him into bed early.

And Now Kath and Kim are back and even though more than 1.9 million Australians found them very funny last night when the new series finally started (not a week earlier as Terry erred in saying last week), Terry was off in India watching the antics of the Australian cricket team and the creation of yet another Australian sporting hero in Michael Clarke.

A nice historical sporting moment that was important! (although some of the commentary was hysterical).

To me Kath and Kim are reminders of the Melbourne style of clever dick smug comedy that bores more people each week The Panel (Ten) appears. They were great on Fast Forward a decade or so ago and they have all morphed into older versions of the people they were sending up on the Seven Network years ago. That’s just my view and I know I am wrong. All those people who watched K and K last night are right, but the girls don’t move me.

And Glenn Robins is still much better as Russell Coight.

On Kath and Kim he looks like Russell Coight who lost his way and drifted into suburbia!

But the move, The Castle came from the same bunch of people and thinking and that was funny. But the Panellists (Rob Sitch et al) were in the background while better actors had the gig.

It was the second big audience of the week for a newish (third series) program after the $1.92 million pulled on Tuesday night with Dancing with the Stars. Australian Idol did better with a two million plus audience on Monday night, there are viewers out there in large numbers looking to watch the right program.

But I digress. The two highlights for me last night WERE still Kath and Kim and the performance of Michael Clarke and the rest of the Australian cricket team in India, although the commentary panel for the test does make you long for the crustiness of Chappelli, the ‘Got Him’ of Bill and the urbaness of Richie.

The cricket won’t show up in the ratings (and I bet there are the odd few at the Nine Network a bit angry that the cricket wasn’t on their channel last night. And what about the Ashes tour next year with Fox Sports holding the rights in contravention of the anti-syphoning laws?)

So Seven was squelched, thanks to the appalling bad Playing It Straight and Trading Spouses. The Simple Life with Paris Hilton didn’t help much anyway. Just under a million people watched Paris in the vain hope she might show some talent apart from the odd suggestive look (Okay I did watch more than the cricket, OK!).

Playing It Straight and Trading Louses could only average half a million viewers or so for Seven over the two hours from 8.30 pm to 10.30pm! But they are going and the Amazing Race and Stargate will be there from next week to try and hold the fort for Seven. One of the opposition will be the second series of The Apprentice on Nine, but which continues to fade in the US.

So Nine won the night nationally in the five major metro markets with a 29.5% share, from Ten with 27.1% and Seven a long way back on 20.3%. Kath and Kim and The Chaser meant the ABC did very well, with a 18.5% share, while SBS finished with a 4.7% share.

In Sydney Nine had a bigger win over Ten, 31.2% to 27.5%. Seven was even further back in third with 19.1%, two points ahead of the ABC on 17.1%, with SBS recording a strong 5.1%.

Kath and Kim was by far the most popular program, watched by 1.95 million people nationally. Ten’s double Criminal Intent SpecialVictims Unit (new and repeat) were second and third. There were almost 300,000 more viewers watching Kath and Kim than the fresh episode of Criminal Intent, which is quite a feat given CI’s lock on Thursday evenings for Ten.

Nine News was 4th, Getaway was next, Home and Away was 6th for Seven, Body Work, Frasier and A Current Affair followed in that order for Nine and Today Tonight was 10th for Seven.

In Sydney Kath and Kim was first, the two law and Order SVU episodes were second (new) and third (repeat), Getaway was 4th, Body Work was 5th, the best of the NRL Footy Show was 6th, Home and Away narrowly beat Frasier, Ten’s Inside Idol was 9th and Nine’s RPA was 10th (and finished 14th nationally).

Seven News and Today Tonight were again week, especially in Sydney and Melbourne, but Sunrise still is well ahead of Today. TheChaser Decides got a nice kick from the big audience at 8.30pm for Kath and Kim. TheChaser Decides saw its audience swell from around 730,000 or so to more than a million last night.