Sharing the Qantas spirit: The Crikey crew’s minds may be in the gutter but we’re staring at the sky. And what we were seeing over the weekend was a bird and some planes and a super reference to Lisa Robertson, ex-hostie who went The Ralph. Sure, it may just be us, but a full-page ad that appeared in The Weekend Australian seemed an unfortunate — subliminal? —  choice from the Qantas marketing dept. A brunette would have been a safer option for starters. The pic below is part of a larger ad:

Nine won’t let The Catch-Up die. Why is the Nine Network so determined to save the struggling daily chat show The Catch-Up? Nine can’t seem to see that viewers are not interested and have stuck it up against daytime ratings powerhouse, Dr Phil on Ten. That’s a real act of bravery, perhaps stupidity, but it is the fourth programming change involving The Catch-Up since it started about four months ago. From today, it has been swapped from 1pm to midday with the repeats of McLeod’s Daughters moving to 1pm. McLeod’s was put into the midday slot a few weeks ago to give The Catch-Up a decent lead-in after the hour-long version of cooking show Fresh failed badly when Dr Phil moved to Ten. The problems start with the concept of the program devised by Mia Freedman, Nine’s creative services director, and the decision to let Dr Phil leave Nine. — Glenn Dyer

Seven gets back on track. Victory to the Seven Network in the TV ratings battle last week as it easily reversed Nine’s win the previous week. That makes it 15 out of 16 weeks for Seven, including the two non-official weeks at Easter. Seven won the week with a share of 29.2% (28,2%) from Nine with 28.1% (28.3%), Ten with 21.0% (21.2%), the ABC with 16.2% (16.4%) and SBS with 5.5% (5.9%). Nine won Sydney and Brisbane while Seven won Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. Nine actually had one of its better weeks without a one-off ratings drawcard (such as the State of Origin) as Seven’s ratings attack was somewhat blunted by the rugby union test on Saturday (for the second week in a row) and the success of The Chaser and Spicks and Specks on Wednesday night. A solid performance on Sunday night plus big wins on Monday, Tuesday and Friday drove Seven’s win. It lost Wednesday narrowly by 0.1% and drew Thursday with Nine. Seven won Friday thanks to the Collingwood-Fremantle AFL game, despite Nine’s NRL games doing well in Sydney and Brisbane. Nine repeated the movie Shrek on Saturday and scored a big win around the country. Ten’s screening of the Sydney-Essendon game on Saturday night had no impact in Sydney where the network averaged a 12.2% share but helped the network to draw the night in Melbourne. Ten won Perth on Saturday night. — Glenn Dyer Last night’s TV ratings
The Winners: A win for Nine last night with the premiere screening of Shrek 2 making it a winning weekend for the network, but Seven is still close. 60 Minutes was tops with 1.680 million, followed by Seven News with 1.592 million just in front of Nine News with 1.533 million. Shrek 2 was next with 1.528 million, followed by Grey’s Anatomy (1.452 million) and Ugly Betty (1.370 million and recovering audience levels). Seven’s Where Are They Now averaged 1.296 million for Seven at 6.30pm and Nine’s irritating The Lost Tribes averaged 1.153 million viewers too many at 6.30pm. The Big Brother Live Eviction at 7.30pm averaged 1.131 million, the 7pm ABC News had 1.117 million and the 6.30pm Big Brother averaged 1.006 million. The Einstein Factor on the ABC at 6.30pm had a high 915,000.
 
The Losers: What About Brian, which is a disappointment for Seven, which had high hopes for it. Robin Hood had 903,000 viewers for the ABC last night — not so much a loser, more emerging boredom with a politically correct storyline and, for Britain, a large numbers of improbably warm and fine days. Where is the mist, rains, snows and sleet of winter? Where is the nasty brutish reality of life in 1192 AD in and around Nottingham? 
News & CA: Seven News won nationally but needed Perth’s 81,000 margin to win by 59,000. Seven News won Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth. Nine won Sydney and Adelaide. Seven’s Weekend Sunrise averaged 429,000 from 8am to 10am; Landline on the ABC, 249,000 and Nine’s Sunrise was down at 206,000. For the second time in a month Offsiders (B. Cassidy without jacket) outrated the political junkie’s fix, Insiders. Offsiders averaged 154,000; Insiders, 134,000 and Inside Business, 120,000.
 
The Stats: Nine won with a share of 31.5% (31.4% last week) from Seven with 27.8% (28.2%), Ten was third with 19.8% (19.7%), the ABC finished with 15.7 (16.0%) and SBS was on 5.2% (6.8%). Nine won all five metro markets. In regional areas a similar result with WIN?NBN winning with 32.3% from Prime/7Qld with 27.2%, Southern Cross (Ten) with 17.9%, the ABC with 15.7% and SBS on 6.8%.
 
Glenn Dyer’s comments: Nine’s old fashioned Sunday night with a movie at 8.30pm worked. The first run Shrek 2 probably did as well as a fresh ep of CSI would have at 8.30pm and better than CSI Miami. Next Sunday, Nine is running repeats of CSI and CSI Miami because its the second State of Origin   game on Wednesday night and it reckons it will win the week. Nine wants to stretch its fresh eps of both CSIs out as long possible on Sunday nights. That way Nine has a chance of starting the week with a winning night and be in a position to extend its lead during the week when a number of new programs emerge in the second half of the year. Tonight the usual suspects for viewers: Australian Story, Four Cs, Media Watch and reworked Enough Rope on the ABC. Seven has The Rich List, Desperate Housewives and Brothers and Sisters. Nine has What’s Good For You, 1 vs 100 and a repeat of CSI. Ten has Big Brother and Supernatural. And don’t forget Mythbusters on SBS at 7.30pm. Nine also unveils its replacement for Bert at 5.30pm: it’s not another ep of Antiques Roadshow, it’s called Bargain Hunt and sees two teams compete at an antiques auction.