Sometimes some TV viewers in Australia think our commercial networks milk their successful programs to the point of annoyance. I have news for you, compared to Rupert Murdoch’s Fox Network, ours are rank amateurs. US official TV ratings finish at the end of next week. On Wednesday night, US time, the finale of American Idol will conclude on Fox for 2009. It will do well and give Fox a win in the key 18 to 49 demographic that is the major one for US TV Networks and advertisers. Fox isn’t doing so well, its audiences are off this year, but Idol is still a huge hit.

To make sure viewers stay with Fox for the week, it’s flogging Idol to death and beyond, if that is possible. According to this PR blurb, Fox is planning no fewer than six episodes of Idol or Idol derived shows. That includes the two night final starting Tuesday and ending Wednesday. Some of the other Idol shows are “Idol ’s Sexiest Stars”, “Idol Tonight: Fantastic Finish, The Fashion Team: Idol Tonight Edition”. Remember grown men and women are responsible for these programs.

By the way, while Fox is number one in 18 to 49s, CBS is second and has grown its market share 3%. Fox hasn’t. Overall in All People, CBS is the only network up this year in the US with a 12% improvement. Nine and Ten share CBS’s output here: CSI and Two And A Half Men and The Mentalist on Nine. David Letterman , 60 Minutes (it sells US 60 Minutes stories to Nine).

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey