KAK gets whipped. You have to wonder what thoughts fly through the heads of media minders when their charges appear with that oh-so-innocent Kerri-Anne. Today’s Mornings victim, Mark Vaile. Whip me Mark. Click on the picture below to watch the steamy action or click here.
Reasons for missing John Laws, part 1. This morning John Laws mulled over yesterday’s lunch to celebrate 40 years of talkback radio. The Tonsils wasn’t going to attend at first but then he found out he was to be seated next to the Prime Minister, “a very enjoyable man”. Some of Laws’ colleagues have taken exception to the proximity. Silly them. “When you’ve been around as long as I have, and you’ve had a modicum of success, as I have had,” Laws explained, “you’ll always find the jerks, the weasels, who can’t bear the fact that one of their own is getting what they perceive to be some kind of preferential treatment…In Australian radio these days there are only, what, about three real offenders in this category of jerk or weasel. One of them is the strangely screwed up Bob Rogers, one is the holier-than-thou failed alcoholic with the fungus face, Derryn Hinch, and the other is our own resident dwarf, Steve Price. Now they of course all had something to say.” Oh dear, Silly them. “I apologise Derryn, I really do for having more success than you …”. “And then we come to the poison dwarf …” Listen to one of radio’s magic moments here.
Big Brother finale goes long. As TV broadcasts go, last night’s final Big Brother was a huge, unwieldy mess, and probably went close to setting a record for overrunning. It took new meaning to the phrase “ratings overkill” and was a strong denial of the good adage for TV of “leaving them wanting more.” It couldn’t have been further from the truth. There was nothing left. Ten had wrung everything from this year’s Big Brother. Compared to the final night when the winner of Australian Idol is announced, which is quite often emotional and highly charged, the end of BB last night was a marathon. It was drawn out and ran 54 minutes over time. Why limit yourself to 135 minutes of broadcast when you can say it in 184 minutes or so? That’s what Ten did last night. Preliminary ratings showed The Winner Announced averaged 1.791 million for the two and a quarter hours from 7pm. But Ten said in its ratings report that The Winner Announced averaged 1.9 million people. That was from 8.32 to 10.09pm. The peak was 2.3 million people, according to Ten. The Finale Night averaged 1.561 million from 7pm to 8.32pm. The peak last night of 2.3 million was just a bit ahead of the peak in 2006 of 2.2 million, but the audience was no better than the 1.88 million of last year. But once again there wasn’t an audience of over two million, as there was in 2005. From 2001 when it started, to the 2005 Big brother which averaged more than 2 million viewers for the announcement of the winner, the program is off around 10% or more on those levels, but up on 2006 on Ten’s figures. And by the way Aleisha Cowcher, the Reggie Bird clone, won last night. — Glenn Dyer
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A difference of location for Difference of Opinion . Late next week, Friday or Saturday a convoy of seven semi-trailers — yes seven semi trailers — will drive up to the ABC head office in Ultimo in Sydney to load a valuable cargo. They have been contracted to take the set of the ABC’s indifferently performing chat show, Difference of Opinion, south to Melbourne and the ABC’s studios there where it will be reassembled in time for the program on 16 August. There has actually been a dose of inflation in this exercise. Originally it was estimated that three semis would be required to do the shift, but after the set was measured and its exact proportions worked out, it was discovered that more trucks would be needed. The problem is the bulk of the set was designed to fit into the biggest studio at Ultimo and can’t be reduced in size for the smaller studio. The big studio is required on Thursdays from the middle of August onwards, meaning the ABC will spend tens of thousand of dollars moving the set to Melbourne. Then it will fly host Jeff McMullen and a producer and at least one other person to and from Melbourne every week for the rest of the season. That will be for the 16 final programs. The ratings for the program have been down on its first season on Monday nights. That’s to be expected: audience levels are lower on Thursdays. But what was unexpected was the tired nature of the program, as though McMullen and the whole idea behind it had been exhausted in the first run. The ABC knew there would be problems when it decided to go with 20 programs in the second series this year. — Glenn Dyer
Last night’s TV ratings
The Winners: Big Brother limped home last night, dragging the Ten Network to a close win over Seven that saw Nine buried back in third for the second night in a row. The night’s audience figures for Ten were a bit confused by a 54 minute overrun, but the announcement of the winner averaged 1.9 million people. Second was Seven’s Border Security with 1.693 million and Seven News had with 1.658 million. The Big Brother program from 7pm to just over 8.30pm averaged 1.581 million (according to Ten’s figures). Today Tonight was next with 1.578 million and Nine News followed with 1.437 million. Surf Patrol averaged 1.379 million at 8pm for Seven. A Current Affair was next with 1.334 million and Seven’s Home And Away averaged 1.261 million at 7pm. Nine’s 1 vs 100 averaged 1.208 million for Eddie McGuire and beat the first hour of Seven’s Criminal Minds with 1.190 million. Temptation averaged 1.178 million at 7pm for Nine, just ahead of the 7pm ABC news with 1.170 million people. Neighbours had another solid night for Ten with 1.070 million people (helped by an early turn on to BB at 7pm) and Australian Story averaged 1.039 million at 8pm. Seven’s Deal or No Deal averaged 1.028 million at 5.30pm and was the 17th and final program with a million or more viewers. Andrew Denton’s Enough Rope averaged 941,000 at 9.35pm.
The Losers: What A Year, another list driven program that Nine started in 2006, returned last night with Julia Zemiro and Bert Newton fronting. It averaged just 803,000 people at 7.30pm. Mike Munro and Megan Gale did as well last year with their first series. Another stumble at Willoughby. And Nine can’t blame Big Brother on Ten because the target audience for What A Year is 50-plus. It “skews old” as they say in Teleland talk. Torchwood really averaged 563,000 straight after the end of BB, which is hardly inspiring for a program aimed at the target 18 to 49 audience.
News & CA: Seven News and Today Tonight again won nationally and in every market but Melbourne. Ten News at Five averaged 936,000 and the Late News / Sports Tonight averaged 531,000. The 7.30 Report averaged 890,000, Four Corners, 762,000 and Media Watch, 774,000. Lateline 365,000 and Lateline Business, 174,000. World News Australia on SBS, 238,000 at 6.30pm and 128,000 at 9.30pm. 7am Sunrise 370,000 (these sub-400,000 audiences are starting to be a trend) and 7am Today was up to 266,000. 9am Mornings on Seven, 168,000, KAK at 9am on Nine, 125,000, 9am with David and Kim , 86,000.
The Stats: Ten won with 28.8% (19.8%) from Seven with 27.9% (30.7%), Nine won 21.2% (23.6%), the ABC on 15.6% (17.2%) and SBS on 6.5% (9.0%). Ten won Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Seven won Sydney and Perth. In Sydney Nine’s share fell to 10.2%, which is what Ten gets some nights. Sydney was Big Brother’s weakest market. Seven leads the week with 26.9% from Ten with 26.5%, with Nine third. There is now a small chance Nine might finish the week third! In regional areas Big Brother isn’t popular. Seven won through Prime/7Qld with 26.9%, from Southern Cross (Ten) with 25.6%, with Win/NBN third for Nine with 25.5%, the ABC with 13.9% and SBS on 8.2%.
Glenn Dyer’s comments: Big Brother did it again for Ten, right at the end. Viewers showing they are cleverer than the Network and the producers at Endermol Southern Star. They know there are only five programs that interest, (the first one, the two in the last week and then the last Sunday night and last night). Tonight Ten’s ratings return to normal, and then tomorrow night, Ten will win with Thank God You’re Here and House , and then it will sag alarmingly and Seven will win the week after Nine wins Thursday night. When could you have said that the Nine Network would have finished third on three nights in the same week? Tonight it’s Seven with RSPCA Animal Rescue, Medical Emergency and All Saints up against Things To Try on Nine and then repeats of CSI Miami and CSI New York on Nine. Ten has a fresh CSI and starts repeats of Futurama at 7pm. But there’s a new Simpsons at 7.30pm. The ABC of course has its highlight at 9.20 with Foreign Correspondent, which isn’t pap like The Bill or Carbon Cops. Could Nine actually finish third tonight as well, making a threepeat, and four in a week?