The Winners: Seven News was tops with 1.395 million, from Today Tonight with 1.346 million. The repeat of 20 to 1 on Nine at 8.30pm, averaged 1.190 million. Ten’s The Biggest Loser at 7pm to 8pm averaged 1.182 million. Nine News was 5th with 1.119 million and Getaway on Nine at 7.30pm averaged 1.098 million. Home and Away averaged 1.073 million at 7pm, Law And Order SVU at 8.30pm was 8th with 1.070 million for Ten and the 7pm ABC News averaged 1.069 million. A Current Affair was 10th 1.033 million and Bondi Vet was 11th at 8pm for Ten with 1.022 million, Nine’s 7pm repeat of Two and a Half Men averaged 987,000, the Footy Shows (NRL and AFL), 953,000 from 9.30pm, Seven’s repeat of Ghost Whisperer at 7.30pm, 874,000. Q&A on the ABC at 9.30pm, 518,000. Inspector Rex on SBS at 7.30pm, 341,000. On ABC 2 the most watched program last night was the repeat of Spicks and Specks with 101,000 viewers. The Gruen Transfer was next with 95,000 people. The most watched program on Ten’s ONE sports HD channel was the 7.30pm Thursday Night Live sports chat show with 34,000. That was more viewers than the 28,000 who watched Ten’s early morning News at 6am on the main channel.

The Losers: NRL Footy Show on Nine, 210,000 in Sydney and 130,000 in Brisbane from 9.30pm to midnight. Average at best. Not good content. Life On Mars on Ten at 9.30 pm, 771,000, Private Practice on Seven an hour earlier, 728,000. Both dying.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market as did Today Tonight. It was another rough night for Nine News and ACA in Sydney. Seven and the ABC News, plus The 7.30 Report had more viewers in that market. Ten News averaged 860,000, the late News/Sports Tonight, 345,000. The 7.30 Report, 882,000, Lateline, 338,000, Lateline Business, 198,000. SBS News at 6.30pm, 221,000, 209,000 for the 9.30pm late edition. 7am Sunrise, 351,000, 7am Today slipped down to 261,000.

The Stats: Nine won with a 6pm to midnight All People share of 29.1% (27.2%) from Seven with 24.0% (29.1%), Ten with 23.8% (21.6%), the ABC on 16.9% (17.3%) and SBS with 6.3% (4.8%). Nine won everywhere bar Perth where Seven won. Seven leads the week, 26.5% to 24.7% for Nine and 24.4% for Ten. Ten said it won 16 to 39 and 18 to 49 last night. In regional areas a win to WIN/NBN with 29.7% from Prime/7Qld with 24.7%, Southern Cross (Ten) with 21.5%, the ABC with 17.9% and SBS with 6.2%.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Well, the doco on the ABC, Solo at 8.30pm, was one of the better pieces of TV you will have seen for quite a while. Unfortunately it averaged just over 520,000 viewers. It was very uncomfortable viewing though. I can see why it was made, I can understand why Mr McAuley tried the first time, and the second, but I can’t understand why he went in the end with fear and trepidation about his wife and son being left alone. Which they were. The best sort of TV making, even if it was tough going in places.

Mad Men on SBS at 8.30pm (tape one, watch the other) was “brought” to us viewers (410,000, so I am glad Solo beat it) by a beer company and a car company, which if you think of the history of US advertising portrayed in the program was utterly appropriate. All that was missing from the sponsorship was a cigarette company, but that was being done on screen. It was the biggest advertisement for smoking allowed on our TV screens for years. As for the storyline, subtexts, back-story etc etc, go read John Cheever, John O’Hara and early John Updike (with James Baldwin thrown in) to get a far better nuanced sense of American male working life and female home life in the 1950s and 1960s.

But that said, it was nicely done and it is high quality TV. That it appeared first in the US on Cable TV is an indictment on US TV (free to air), not Australia, where it has been shown on cable first as well. The real sin is that no one in this country has tried to portray the 1950s and 1960s here in the same light. If someone could have the strength to do such a difficult doc like Solo, surely it wouldn’t be too hard to tackle Australian social history from the Fifties and Sixties in drama? Without lurching into an imitation of The Sullivans etc.

TONIGHT: AFL, Better Homes and Gardens on Seven in some states for the AFL. Filler material elsewhere. Nine (with NRL) and Ten. Ten at least does have something else to watch apart from footy and movies The ABC has the spookies in Midsomer back murdering (pity they keep missing Inspector Barnaby and his annoying wife!). That’s at 8.30pm, good mindless TV. SBS has a doco on the US Embassy hostage drama in Iran all those years ago, from both sides.

SATURDAY: A repeat of New Tricks on the ABC at 7.30pm, some sport and the rest is enough to send you to sleep or better still, out for the night. Let’s go.

SUNDAY NIGHT: What’s this? TV’s second coming, a week late? Suddenly the networks (especially Seven and Nine) are taking us seriously again. They want us to watch. Why? Oh, it’s the ratings fairy; she’s back in town after going away from the eggs and buns. So Seven has Sunday Night, Border Security USA (the US version of the Australian program) and The Force is back at 8pm after the import. Bones is running at 8.30pm. 24 is still lurking at 11pm.

Nine has Domestic Blitz back after a much needed rest. 60 Minutes soldiers on at 7.30pm with nothing remotely linked to reality. It is pap TV, and that means it will do well. CSI is fresh at 8.30pm and CSI Miami is also fresh at 9.30pm.

Ten has The Biggest Loser at 6.30pm and then So You Think You Can Dance Australia until 9pm, then Rove and the dying Dexter.

The ABC starts a new drama called Dirt Game at 8.30pm (it’s about the mining boom a year or so late).

SBS has Dateline and the movie Good Night And Good Luck, which is the highlight of the night…

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
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