Is Nine finally getting back in the game? Is Nine back in the hunt
in its ongoing news and current affairs battle with Seven?

And if
it is, what’s the reason? On Monday
night, Nine News had a good night in east coast markets, winning Sydney,
Melbourne and Brisbane while ACA
won Sydney and Melbourne, though Seven still won the network battle,
depending on its supremacy in Perth and to a lesser extent in Adelaide.
Last night, Seven again won nationally, but there were signs of
stronger numbers for Nine News – Seven News had a national audience of
1.554 million; Nine News 1.474 million. Not so strong for A Current Affair, but ACA‘s numbers were
better than they have been for some weeks with a national figure of 1.323 million
viewers, compared to Today Tonight‘s 1.549 million. And why
this rebound? For the second night in a row Bert’s Family Feud
had an audience over 600,000: 664,000 (679,000 on Monday). On Good
Friday, Bert’s audience averaged 597,000 and Nine News beat Seven
nationally but that result shouldn’t be taken too literally given it
was a public holiday (likewise Monday and possibly yesterday which is a
holiday for schoolchildren in some states). That’s why network number
crunchers and programmers will be watching closely for the rest of this
week – and next week when official ratings return – to see if the new
viewers to Bert are sticking and how long they stay. This new spurt
could be an autumnal fling by viewers with Bert, but if it persists
then Nine could be back in the game. – Glenn Dyer
The
Poms are making a fortune out of selling TV programs
to foreign markets such as Australia: a real fortune that dwarfs
the so-called success stories we have of selling programs like Neighbours and Home and Away back to them.

UK TV imports up 23%.
First
time figures on the export of UK TV productions reported online in The Guardian and detailed in this table show they totalled more than $1.5 billion in 2005, a
rise of 21%. Australia and
New
Zealand accounted for 10% of that figure – the second biggest market – at
around $154 million, up 23%. The
largest market was the US with a huge $550 million in
exports. British programs seen here included
the Agatha Christie series, Poirot and Marple (ABC), the Midsomer
Murders
(both ABC and Nine), Jamie Oliver’s School
Dinners
(Ten) and Idol (also on Ten). The
Apprentice
is down as a UK
export through Fremantle International, but it’s made in the
US. Ten’s Brainiac is another Granada International
export. But the
list is confusing and might not be all that accurate. Missing from it are BBC
programs like Dalziel and Pascoe and Doc Martin, which are on the ABC at the moment, and Heartbeat and William and Mary on Seven. All four were screened on Australian TV last
year. Perhaps
the biggest omission at first glance is Who Wants To Be
A Millionaire
, now “resting” at Nine. It’s a production from the
UK group, Celador. – Glenn Dyer

Last night’s TV
ratings

The Winners Nine’s little run of successes stopped last night as
Seven returned its ratings big gun, Dancing With The Stars in a real live non
highlights episode and won the night with it. The program averaged more than 2.1
million viewers to be easily the most watched show on the night, far ahead of
Seven News (1.554 million), Today Tonight (1.549 million), both on Seven as
well. Then came Ten’s The Biggest Loser, in its last week (sort of) and grabbing
1.538 million. Nine News was next with 1.474 million, All Saints off the back of
Dancing was 6th with 1.454 million, A Current Affair was watched by 1.323
million, Home and Away, 1.312 million, a repeat of CSI on Nine,1.198 million and
The Simpsons (Tuesday ) was 10th with 1.096 million. Survivor Panama was 11th
with 1.082 million, Temptation was 12th with 1.037 million and its second
million-plus audience in a row, CSI (repeat) was next with 1.017 million and
Futurama on ten was 14th with 1.012 million.
The Losers Losers? Not Bert. Another high audience of 664,000 helped
Nine News and to a lesser extent, ACA. Is the tide turning for Bert, or is it a
holiday infatuation by bored people? Stay tuned, for the next
thrilling instalment. Deal or No Deal 951,000 was strong but didn’t give much of
a push in Sydney and Melbourne to Seven News, not as much as the
extra viewers for Bert seemed to help Nine. Rove Live with 726,000 not so much a
failure as an under-performer. Antiques Roadshow at 5 pm on Nine 431,000 after
more than half a million the night before: the holiday factor here as
well?
News & CA Seven News and Today Tonight again won nationally, but
that was due wins in Perth for the News and in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth for
TT over ACA. Seven News had a winning margin of 179,000 in Perth over Nine!
There was again a turn-off from Nine News to ACA. The ABC News at 7 pm averaged
959,000 and the 7.30 Report, 793,000. Ten News at Five did well with 949,000
viewers, up on its effort on the holiday Monday..
The Stats Seven with 36.2% (29.5% a week earlier), from Nine with
25.1% (27.1%), Ten with 20.4% (24.5%), the ABC with 13.3%(14.3%) and SBS with
5.0% (4.6%). Thanks to Dancing With The Stars, Seven won all five
markets.
Glenn Dyer’s comments Nine ran a little dead last night with repeats of
the CSIs up against Dancing and All Saints, after SurvivorPanama had battled
the first hour of Dancing. No competition. If it hadn’t been for the stronger
performance by Nine News in particular (and ACA to a lesser extent) in the East
Coast markets, Nine would have finished further behind. But their answer is, its
non-ratings! And so it is, so what are we to make of Wednesday, tonight?
Survivor again on Nine, a repeat of Without A Trace at 8.30 and poor old
stumbling ER at 9.30 pm. Seven has a repeat of Beyond Tomorrow but followed by a
new ep of Prison Break, but a repeat of Aircrash Investigations. Ten however has
TBL at 7 pm, Thank God You’re Here at 7.30 pm and then repeats of House and
NCIS. Yes it’s ratings, only one show worth watching there. You choose!. The ABC
has Spicks and Specks and The Worst Week of My Life, both worth
watching!

Peter Fray

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