The Winners: MasterChef was the top program with 1.890 million viewers for Ten at 7.30pm; with Seven News next with 1.699 million and Underbelly was for Nine 3rd with 1.598 million. Nine News was next with 1.503 million and Sunday Night was next with 1.396 million for Seven at 6.30pm. Seven’s Bones was 6th at 8.30pm for its finale which averaged 1.328 million and Nine’s 6.30pm program, Customs, averaged 1.185 million. Send in the Dogs averaged 1.175 million for Nine at 7pm and 9th was 60 Minutes with 1.169 million. The Force, Seven, 8pm, averaged 1.159 million and the repeat of Border Security averaged 1.096 million people at 7.30pm for Seven. Merlin averaged 1.040 million for Ten at 6.30pm and the finale of Castle averaged 1.025 million people at 9.30pm for Seven.

The Losers: Nothing really. It was a solid night of fare for viewers. The only question mark is over Nine’s CSI at 9.30pm. Another poor audience with 773,000 people watching. Ten’s House at 9.30 m, 692,000 (but it is being saved by the high recording figures for it).

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and everywhere bar Adelaide. Ten News averaged 652,000, the 7pm ABC News, 840,000. SBS News at 6.30pm, 177,000. Weekend Sunrise in the morning, 372,000 from 8am, Weekend Today, 266,000. Landline repeat at Noon on the ABC, 221,000. Insiders at 9am, 192,000, Inside Business at 10 am, 153,000, Offsiders on the ABC half an hour later, 152,000. Meet The Press on Ten at 8am, 34,000.

The Stats:

FTA: Nine won with a share of 30.3%, from Seven with 28.3%, Ten, 23.2%, the ABC, 14.8% and SBS, 3.4%. Nine won everywhere bar Perth, thanks to GO.

Main Channel: Seven won with a share of 26.3%, from Nine with 25.7%, Ten on 21.4%, ABC 1, 13.7% and SBS ONE, 3.1%. Nine won Sydney, Seven won the rest.

Digital: GO won with a share of 4.6% (more than SBS’s combined overnight share), from 7TWO with 2.0%, ONE with 1.8%, ABC 2, 0.8% and ABC 3 and SBS TWO, 0.3% each. That’s a total share for the six FTA digital channels of 9.8%.

Pay TV: Nine won with 25.2%, Seven had a share of 23.5%, Ten, 19.2%, the ABC, 12.3% and SBS, 2.8%. Pay TV had a share of 14.2% for its 100 plus channels, the 11 FTA channels, 85.6%.

Regional:

(ALL shares on the basis of combined overnight 6pm to midnight All People)

Glenn Dyer’s comments: A win to Nine last week with the clincher the 1.1 million people who watched Sam Stosur lose the French Women’s Tennis late Saturday night. (162,000 on Fox Sports 2 on pay TV in the five metro markets). 19 of the top 20 programs in the five metro markets on Pay TV last week were sports broadcasts or discussion shows. the first general viewing program was Midsomer Murders (47,000 viewers) at Number 20. No wonder Foxtel is still pushing for the anti-siphoning rules to be relaxed. Without the sport, there’s no reason for most subscribers to watch.

Once again Saturday night saw another very strong night for the six FTA digital channels. They had a national average of 15.7% and a peak in Adelaide of 21.4% which equalled Seven’s share in that market and beat the ABC and Pay TV. In fact the six digital FTA channels beat Pay TV’s share in Adelaide last week. Pay TV has over 100 channels, but a low penetration in Adelaide. Digital TV has a penetration of around 70% in Adelaide. Pay TV is all digital. The FTA digital channels had shares of 13.2% in Sydney (beat Ten’s 11.8% share), 15.2% in Melbourne, 17.5% in Brisbane and 16.0% in Perth.

Nine won All People last night thanks to a strong showing by GO. Seven won the main channels. Ten won 16 to 39 and 18 to 49s. Underbelly was OK, MasterChef a bit over top and had its biggest ever audience this year.

Underbelly is not up against MasterChef and should be doing better. Apart from Sydney, Underbelly couldn’t lift Nine to a win on the main channels. This series will mark the time Australian TV viewers tired of the Underbelly format (which is what it is). Seven’s Sunday Night easily beat 60 Minutes, which belatedly got onto the Storm financial collapse and the role played by the Bank of Queensland.

The Swans Essendon AFL game in Sydney averaged just 58,000 people. That’s a pity because it was one of the best games of football of any code I’ve seen for years. Dry, then wet weather, 7 points in it for most of the game. It was athletic, desperate and both sides deserved a draw.

TONIGHT: Australian Story, Four Corners, Media Watch and Q&A on the ABC from 8pm. MasterChef on Ten from 7.30pm. The Mentalist on Nine at 8.30pm. Man Vs. Wild on SBS at 8.35pm.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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