The Winners: Seven News was tops with 1.259 million, Today Tonight was second with 1.236 million and Border Security‘s repeat on Seven at 7.30pm was third with 1.233 million. Medical Emergency was 4th at 8pm with 1.159 million, with City Homicide sparking up to be 5th for Seven at 8.30pm, with 1.130 million. The second last Spicks and Specks of the year averaged 1.114 million for the ABC at 8.30pm, Celebrity MasterChef Australia on Ten at 7.30pm averaged 1.111 million and the fresh episode of Two and a Half Men at 7.30pm on Nine was 8th with 1.066 million. Home and Away won the 7pm slot for Seven with 1.057 million and was just ahead of the 7pm repeat of Two and a Half Men with 1.029 million. Nine News was 11th with a million viewers. NCIS Los Angeles averaged 998,000 for Ten at 8.30pm.

The Losers: Nine: What’s Good For You This Summer at 8pm: 875,000. RPA Where Are They Now at 8.30pm, 818,000. Crime Investigation Australia at 9.30pm, 672,000. ACA, 984,000. None of these figures were good enough for the second ranked network in the country on a night where it had a chance to do better, if it had the firepower.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market as did Today Tonight. Nine News and ACA were again weak in Sydney. The 7pm ABC News averaged 288,000 in Sydney and finished ahead of Nine with 252,000. Seven News was on 303,000. ACA fell to 234,000 in Sydney. The 7pm ABC News had a national audience of 920,000, The 7.30 Report, 683,000. Lateline, 223,000, Lateline Business, 130,000. Ten News averaged 765,000. Ten’s late News/Sports Tonight, 418,000. SBS News at 6.30pm, 144,000, the 9.30pm edition, 153,000. 7am Sunrise with 351,000 was back in front of 7am Today with 307,000.

The Stats: Seven won with a 6pm to Midnight All People combined share of 30.4% (29.6% last week); from Nine with 25.4% (24.7%), Ten with 23.4% (24.8%), the ABC on 17.1% (16.2%) and SBS on 3.7% (4.7%). Seven won all five metro markets and leads the week, 31.1% to 26.7% for Nine. Seven won All People and 25 to 54, Ten won 16 to 39 and 18 to 49.

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Regionally, Prime/7Qld won with a share of 29.3%, from WIN/NBN with 27.2%, Southern Cross (Ten) with 20.3%, the ABC with 17.5% and SBS on 5.7%.

Digitally: Nine’s GO won with 2.30% (leaving Nine on 23.10%), from 7TWO with 1.90% (Seven on 28.50%), ABC 2 with 1.60% (ABA 1 with 15.40%), Ten’s ONE with 0.70% (22.70% for Ten) and SBS TWO with 0.30% and SBS ONE with 3.40%.

Fusion Strategy said Pay TV’s share last night was down on last week and down a large 18% on a year ago as the rot continues.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Another surprisingly strong win for Seven, with Nine surprisingly weak on an average night of TV. Spicks and Specks has the final of the year, with some funny bits. Hungry Beast remains on the breadline, but is getting better and more focused. John Safran was OK. Even though Hungry Beast averaged just 709,000 and Safran’s program, 591,000, they were more interesting that what Nine was offering. From 8.30pm to 9.30pm Nine was either 4th or third.

MasterChef Australia was OK for Ten last night, but it seems there’s either overkill at work or something else is wrong. The celebrities do not do it for me. Unlike the contestants in the first series of the real MasterChef (who had a lot to lose), these celebrities have their celebrity to fall back on if they are eliminated. Be warned, Ten is going to bring us a junior MasterChef in 2010, which should just about ruin the whole idea for the audience by this time next year.

After promising to end the year strongly, Nine has fallen in a hole in the past couple of weeks

TONIGHT: Lots of Tiger Woods on the news and no doubt in the “current” affairs programs. Who cares? Getaway on Nine at 7.30pm. Glee on Ten at 7.30pm. The ABC has the second part of Addicted To Money at 8.30pm.

Top Gear alert: SBS is so upset at losing the program to Nine next year that it is going to give us wall to wall Top Gear for the next few weeks. The target audience will be heartily sick and tired of Jeremy, Stig, James and the short one’s car antics by the end of this year. S

BS is doing this, not only to try and devalue Top Gear for Nine next year, but try and drag forward some revenue it had slotted into its 2010 budget from the program and could lose now that TG is off elsewhere. From tomorrow night SBS will show a series of “best-of” and “unseen episodes” of Top Gear at 8.35 pm for seven successive Fridays.

And from next Monday (November 16) it will repeat some classic Top Gear Adventures special episodes. Monday’s episode is a Winter Olympics Special. Nine would have been aching to show that next February as part of its Winter Games coverage. No such luck, SBS is going to make sure that viewers are over TG before Nine gets its hands on them. The irony is that Nine has paid BBC Worldwide a premium for the back catalogue, which SBS is now going to devalue. That’s the sort of competitive spirit that has been lacking in our public broadcasters.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

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