Ten plans extended Thank God You’re Here finale. Ten
intends to go out with a bang next week with the final episode of its surprise hit, Thank God You’re Here.
It will be a 75 minute episode instead of the usual hour and those who
might miss it don’t need to worry. Ten says there will be free
downloadable and streamed versions available from around 11pm EST
(after it has gone to air in Perth). Ten says it’s the first time in
Australia that a commercial TV network has made an entire program
available free of charge right after it has been to air. More than two
million people will tune in for the last episode (1.812 million watched
this week) and Ten will probably win Wednesday night as a result.
Viewers appreciate the simplicity and entertainment factor: the
audience is averaging 1.7 million people, which dominates the 16 to 39
and 25 to 54 demographics, and All People. There will be a second
series but the timing is not yet certain. Ten wants it ASAP to maintain
momentum. In The SMH TV guide on Monday, Tom Gleisner indicated that only two series would be made. “We are
our worst enemies. We have a very short attention span,” he was quoted as saying. Ten, of
course, hopes that changes. Glenn Dyer

KP memorial costs $73,000.
As the prime minister goes
on the front foot defending Work Choices, news has come through of the cost of Kerry Packer’s memorial service at the Opera
House earlier this year. The Oz
reports it was more than $73,000 which was paid for by the federal
government – ie taxpayers. It doesn’t include the cost of NSW
government provided security, police and parking arrangements at the
Opera House. Here’s how the amount was made up, according to a list
provided by the PM to Sydney Labor MHR, John Murphy: “The government
paid for hiring the Opera House ($28,643), advertising
($18,479), flights ($9254), administration ($8797), publicity ($6256)
and Comcars ($1791).” Contrast this with the strident defence the PM
made this week of an attempt by the privately owned Spotlight
company to get an employee (who votes Liberal) to agree to give up all
her benefits in a new work place agreement, for an extra two cents an
hour pay. This would cost her $90 a week, or more than $4,500. When he
died, Kerry Packer was worth an estimated $6.8 billion and his
Australian private company made a profit of $111 million last financial
year. Some people, like the PM, don’t know when to stop or
how to get their noses out of the trough. – Glenn Dyer

Last night’s TV ratings
The Winners: It was back to Seven last night. Today Tonight was tops with 1.490
million, followed by Lost at 8.30pm with 1.447 million (a good effort)
and Seven News was third with 1.405 million (and home by virtue of a
big win in Perth). Nine News was just 10,000 viewers behind in 4th with
1.395 million. Nine’s Missing Person’s Unit averaged 1.370 million at
8.30pm, Nine’s Getaway, 1.347 million at 7.30 pm and Seven’s Las
Vegas
, 1.205 million at 7.30pm. Home and Away clearly won the 7pm
battle with 1.184 million. ACA was 9th with 1.176 million and The
Amazing Race
was 10th with 1.159 million at 9.30pm or thereabouts for
Seven. Next came Hello/Goodbye with 1.141 million at 9pm, Ten’s Big
Brother
with 1.118 million at 7pm, Temptation averaged 1.087 million
at 7pm for Nine (and was third). Ten’s Medium was 14th with 1.049
million and the Two Footy Shows combined for an average 1.017 million
for Nine at 9.30pm and 15th place.

The Losers: Bert’s
Family Feud – still around – averaged 666,000 last night, but Deal or No
Deal
did 912,000 and Ten News, best of all, with 940,000 for the hour.
Just some uninteresting viewing for most of the night and audience
numbers were off a touch as a result.

News & CA:

Seven News was forced to phone a friend in Perth to get it home: STW9
did its usual trick of rolling over in front of the local Seven News.
Seven won by 115,000 in Perth and 10,000 nationally. Whew! Nine won
Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. But then viewers turned off
Nine when A Current Affair popped up at 6.30pm. It lost nationally and
every market to Seven’s Today Tonight. The margin in favour of Seven
blew out from 10,000 in the news nationally to 314,000 by the time TT
and ACA had been to air. That’s a massive turn-off and it happened
across the board. Seven’s Sunrise again beat Nine’s Today Show at the
start of the day very comfortably. The 7pm ABC News averaged 941,000
and the 7.30 Report bounced a little from the lows earlier in the week
to average 856,000. Ten News At 5pm was again solid with 940,000
viewers on average.

The Stats: Seven won last night with
a 31.0% (26.5% last week which was distorted by the Australia-Greece
soccer friendly on SBS). Nine was second with 29.7 (24.9%), Ten was third
with 22.0% (20.5%), The ABC was next with 12.1% (9.1%) and SBS finished
with 5.1% (19.2%). Nine won Sydney and Melbourne, Seven won Brisbane,
Adelaide and a huge victory in Perth by almost 15 points, which pushed
it over the line nationally.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: A
solid win to Seven on an ordinary night’s viewing: no stunts and
average viewing on all networks. A good night to read a book or do your
hair. Nothing really stood out except the solid performance of Nine
News – it’s shades of 2004 and 2005 as Seven depends on Perth
to get its news above Nine’s in the rankings. Nine Perth are just
appalling. And then there was the very sharp drop off in viewing for A
Current Affair
. Viewers are not fools or idiots: there’s a reason they
are returning to Nine News and then deserting for Today Tonight or
other programs. Nine management refuses to confront it. Tonight its the
AFL and NRL on Nine. Collingwood are playing Brisbane Saturday night on
Ten. Awwhhhh. Seven has been competitive these past two Friday nights
without the football. It now leads the week 28.1% to 27.7%. Close.
Will Ten on 25.3% be the kingmaker with the AFL game Saturday night?!

Peter Fray

Save up to 50% on a year of Crikey.

This extraordinary year is almost at an end. But we know that time waits for no one, and we won’t either. This is the time to get on board with Crikey.

For a limited time only, choose what you pay for a year of Crikey.

Save up to 50% or dig deeper so we can dig deeper.

See you in 2021.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

SAVE 50%