New host required at

Media Watch


The
ABC’s Media Watch program is looking for a new host after Liz Jackson decided to
return to Four Corners, as she said she would
at the start of the year. The
story was in today’s SMH.

Media
Watch
has had a reasonable year with Jackson hosting – she just couldn’t do irony and
innuendo the way former host David Marr could. But she was competent and, at times, a touch
feral in her monotone way. It’s
a pity the ABC sent Media Watch and Four
Corners
on holidays the week before we had all the anti-terror raids
earlier this month and the slightly hysterical debate of the anti-terror
laws. Media Watch‘s take on the Singapore Government would have been interesting too.

With so
many redundancies planned for both Fairfax and the Nine Network, the ABC might
have a larger than normal choice of possible replacements for Jackson. Hopefully whoever is chosen will be able to do “irony.”

Headland takes another dive

Oh
dear. Another night of Headland, another lower audience figure. Last night was episode four of this interesting drama
experiment from Seven and it recorded its lowest
audience yet: an average 711,000 people watched from 7.30pm to 8.30pm. That
follows 1.3 million on its first night last Tuesday, then 830,000 last Thursday and 911,000 on Tuesday night before the last Dancing With The Stars dance-off.

From
next week viewers will be able to catch Headland eight
times a week. Yep,
eight times – four new episodes Monday to Thursday at 7pm and then
repeats four days a week. It’s
all about trying to build the audience and get to where the program improves, or
so Seven insiders insist. Last
night there were some flashes of improvement but it is still too predictable,
the characters have come from central boring casting and there needs to be a lot
more risks taken with the storyline, etc.., before ennui sets in among
viewers.

Last night’s TV
ratings

The Winners Nine, after all it was a Thursday night. But clever
programming by Ten trimmed Seven and, to a lesser extent, Nine’s efforts. Ten
programmed Australia’s Brainiest Comedians from 7.30pm to 9pm and it topped the
most watched list with1.597million. That put it in front of Nine’s
Getaway (1.073 million), 20 to 1 (1.526 million) and RPA (1.405 million). Seven
again dominated to 7.30pm thanks to good efforts by the News (1.195 million),
Today Tonight (1.261 million) and Home and Away (1.277 million). But then Headland kicked in at 7.30pm and the world gymnastic titles from 8.30pm meant
that second place was Ten’s, even though other programs – The Surgeon (478,000) – staggered.
The Losers
Temptation is still
weak – that gap with Home and Away just won’t close. Headland and the
gymnastics (560,000) shows that Seven is in
summer mode and now looking to 2006.
News & CA
Seven won both, thanks to wins in Sydney and those big margins
in Perth. Nine won both in Melbourne and Adelaide, while in Brisbane, Nine News won, but lost at 6.30pm with a
sharp loss of audience allowing Today Tonight to jump clear. ABC News and the 7.30 Report did OK with
869,000 and 818,000 respectively. I know daylight savings is making an impact but are fewer
people watching ABC News in Sydney in recent weeks?
The Stats
Nine, with 33.5% from Ten with 25.1%, Seven with 22.4%,
the ABC with 14.4% and SBS with 4.6%. Nine won everywhere, Seven was third
everywhere bar Perth and Brisbane where it just pipped Ten.
Glenn Dyer’s
comments
Well, that was Ten’s best
Thursday night this year and that says something about the way the network’s
audience has faded in 2005. Thursday nights used to see solid audiences for
Ten with the Law and Order programs. Seven is in a different
mode, trying to give Headland
traction – for which they should be applauded. When are Nine and Ten
going to trial their 2006 new local dramas? On air next year of course!