The Winners: Seven News was tops with 1.569 million, The Strip started strongly for Nine with 1.452 million at 8.30pm, Today Tonight was third with 1.408 million and Home and Away was 4th with 1.283 million. Two and a Half Men averaged 1.266 million for the 7pm repeat and Getaway averaged 1.215 million. The semi final of Australian Idol averaged 1.145 million for Ten at 7.30pm and Law And Order CI averaged 1.134 million at 8.30pm for Ten and 8th spot. The 7pm ABC News averaged 1.110 million in 9th spot and 10th was A Current Affair on a weak 1.097 million. Nine News was even weaker with 1.072 million and the repeat of Law And Order SVU averaged 1.015 million viewers at 9.30pm and 12th. The Footy Shows managed to average 1.004 million and 13th and the last spot on the millionaires’ list.

The Losers: Some of Seven’s programming last night. Make Me A Supermodel is anchored at under a million viewers at 7.30pm which is like the kiss of death for the rest of the night. 928,000 put it a distant third or fourth. Seven started it at 7.30pm in in Sydney and Brisbane and ran Home and Away for an hour in Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. Is Seven trying to protect Make Me A Supermodel or give it an easier ride? Or is it trying to nick viewers from Australian Idol? The 7.30 Report gave it a run for its money with an average national audience in the half hour of 936,000. The 7.30 Report had more viewers than Make Me A Supermodel in Sydney. The 7.30 Report also had more viewers than A Current Affair in Sydney, 308,000 to 296,000. That says volumes about how underwhelming Make Me A Supermodel is and how boring ACA is at the moment. Taken Out on Ten at 7pm, 623,000. As they used to say on Big Brother… “Taken Out, it’s time to leave the house!” Inspector Rex repeat at 7.30pm, 362,000 on SBS. Where is Animal Rescue when you need it?

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market as did Today Tonight. Not only did The 7.30 Report do better in Sydney than ACA in a rare event (and different time slots, I know) but the 7pm ABC News had more viewers in Sydney and Melbourne last night than did Nine News. Nine just seems to be tossing in the towel (which is sad if that’s the case) and leaving the field to Seven and the ABC. Ten News averaged 779,000 nationally, the late News/Sports Tonight, 518,000. Lateline, 279,000, Lateline Business, 152,000. SNS News at 6.30pm, 216,000, the 9.30pm edition 156,000. 7am Sunrise, back over 400,000 with 411,000. 7am Today on Nine, 332,000: up as well. The 7am battle continues. Q&A on the ABC at 9.30pm, 508,000.

The Stats: Nine won with a share of 30.2% (30.4%) from Seven 26.2% (25.0%), Ten 23.0% (23.6%), the ABC 16.1% (16.4%), SBS 4.5% (4.6%). Nine won Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Seven won Perth. Seven leads the week 30.0% to 26.1% for Nine with the AFL tonight and tomorrow night. In regional areas a win for WIN/NBN with 31.1%, with Southern Cross (Ten) second with 24.4%, Prime/7Qld with 23.8% in third, then the ABC with 14.7% and SBS 6.0%.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: The Strip‘s debut audience was about equal (a few thousand less) to Patrol Boat. Seven sneaked Ugly Betty out of the line up after promoting her earlier in the week and doubled up with Ghost Whisperer. It didn’t work, except in Sydney. In fact Sydney saw Nine (26.6%) and Seven (26.5%) neck and neck. The Strip did well there with 419,000 people, the highest audience on the night But the first hour of The Footy Show was easily beaten in Sydney by the second episode of Ghost Whisperer. It looks like blokes watch The Strip and then women in Sydney reclaimed the remote for Ghost Whisperer.

The Strip was pitched at males to lead into The Footy Shows and it worked. It and Australian Idol were the most popular programs from 16 to 54 age groups, with The Footy Shows in there as well. The results in Sydney were against the trend in other markets. The Footy Show averaged 455,000 in Melbourne for Nine as the finals start, which is understandable. That was the biggest single audience in the country, and probably why Nine finished with a solid win. Seven completely reversed the situation in Perth. Taking The NRL Footy Show to Brisbane didn’t work: it averaged 130,000 up there and a 209,000 audience in Sydney. Both down from the past couple of weeks.

Seven got rid of Trinny and Susannah on the quiet as well. What’s the use of doing forward schedules? It upsets viewers.

Tonight. Better Homes and Gardens and the AFL will win the night, despite what Foxtel might think. Nine has two NRL games, one of which is on delay in both Sydney and Brisbane markets. Ten has AFL tomorrow and tomorrow night. Nine has the third ODI cricket game between Australia and Bangladesh on Saturday. It starts at 10am, could be over by 2pm, with lunch thrown in. Nine has US tennis open tomorrow morning and Sunday morning and Monday. And there is other stuff on TV as well.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports