The Winners: 12 programs with a million or more viewers, headed by Seven News with one of its strongest performances for months with 1.603 million viewers. Seven’s 8pm program The Force was second with 1.541 million and Border Security averaged 1.540 million in third spot. Today Tonight was next with 1.476 million followed by the results ep of So You Think You Can Dance Australia (1.457 million), Home And Away (1.392 million), Desperate Housewives (1.340 million), A Current Affair (1.227 million), the 7pm ABC News (1.174 million), Nine News (1.115 million), The Biggest Loser (1.059 million) and Ten’s Good News Week (1.038 million). Mythbusters on SBS at 7.30pm, 520,000. A Year With The Royal Family, 968,000 for Nine at 7.30pm.

The Losers: Two And A Half Men, 858,000 for Nine at 7pm. Is this the program that really sums up Nine’s blokey attitude? Supernatural on Ten at 9.40pm, 698,000. Seven’s Dirty Sexy Money dropped almost half a million viewers from Desperate Housewives, which is a class act in comparison. The Oscars had 934,000 from 8.30pm to 11.30pm and beyond. It started with 20-25 minutes of inanities from the Red Carpet with Richard Wilkins, then the audience lifted after 9pm, but fell away late in the evening. By then it was too late to help Nine. Australian Story on Nicole Cornes had 760,000. It deserved more viewers, including some from the media, including the ABC’s Tony Jones.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market as did Today Tonight. Seven did well in both Melbourne and Brisbane between 6pm and 7pm, where it has been weak in recent months. The 7pm ABC News ran second in Sydney and Melbourne. What will Nine News management do about its failing Sydney ratings? Nightline averaged 487,000 coming off the back of the Oscars somewhere closer to midnight than 11.30pm. Ten News averaged 858,000; the Late News/Sports Tonight, 301,000. The 7.30 Report averaged 763,000. SBS News, 200,000 at 6.30pm; 172,000 at 9.30pm. 7am Sunrise 422,000; 7am Today, 286,000 and maintaining that higher level.

The Stats: Seven won 6pm to midnight with a share of 29.9% (29.3%), Nine was next with 25.2% (25.7%), Ten was on 23.1% (22.0%), the ABC was on 14.8% (15.5%) and SBS was on 6.4% (8.0%). Nine won Sydney, Seven won the other four metro markets. Nine leads the week 28.7% to 27.0%. In regional areas a bigger win to Seven through Prime/7Qld with 32.1%, from WIN/NBN for Nine with 23.7%, South Cross (Ten) was on 20.1%, the ABC was on 15.7% and SBS was on 8.4%. In the 6pm to 10.30pm zone 1 slot, Fusion Strategy says Seven finished on top with 26.67% (24.61% a year ago), from Nine with 20.63% (24.35%), Ten with 20.45% (17.94%), Pay TV with 13.67% (13.97%), the ABC with 13.11%(13.66%) and SBS on 5.52% (5.76%).

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Early figures from the US suggest that yesterday’s Oscars ceremony could be one of the lowest rating ever and last night figures strongly suggest that Nine is not doing itself any favours by persisting with what was three very boring hours of TV. In 2003 the Oscars averaged 1.5 million. Last year, Nine split the Red Carpet and Awards into seperate programs and both averaged just over 1 million. After ACA last night, Nine didn’t have a million viewer program for the rest of the night. The Oscars were loved in Sydney and gave a Nine the win there, but the rest of the country, especially Adelaide and Perth said “ho hum”. Seven News was especially strong for the second Monday in a row and Today Tonight was also well ahead of its normal audience this year. Ten’s Dance again showed what fresh talent and a bit of simplicity can do. The contrast with Seven’s It Takes Two tonight will be telling. Tonight we have the Oscars of cricket with the Allan Border Medal presentation on Nine from 10.30pm. And Nine replaces the departed Monster House with its retread special: another ep of 20 to 1 with Bert telling us who our top 20 sporting heroes are. How original!

Source: OzTAM, TV Network reports

Peter Fray

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