The Winners: MasterChef averaged 1.930 million last night for another nasty elimination. Seven News was second with 1.647 million and Today Tonight was 3rd with 1.638 million. Nine News was next with 1.460 million and Good News Week jumped to average 1.402 million for Ten at 8.30pm, its best audience of the year so far. A Current Affair was 6th with 1.250 million and the 7pm repeat of Two and a Half Men averaged 1.235 million. The 7.30pm repeat (according to the schedule) averaged 1.230 million and 8th spot.

9th was the Australia-Germany soccer lesson in the early hours of the morning (4.30am) which averaged 1.106 million people. Hours later the 7.30pm Seven program, Breaking the Magician’s Code: Magic’s Secrets Revealed, also averaged 1.106 million. The 7pm Project had its biggest ever audience with 1.10 million viewers for Ten and beat the 7pm ABC News with 1.093 million and Ten News with 1.089 million. The repeat of The Big Bang Theory at 8pm averaged 1.083 million, with Home and Away on 1.060 million in 15th spot. 16th was the 8.30 repeat of The Mentalist on Nine with 1.043 million.

The Losers: Nine, for treating its viewers with contempt by scheduling a whole lot of repeats from 7pm to well into the night.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market but Melbourne, Today Tonight won nationally and had its biggest win for months over ACA on the holiday Monday evening. The 7.30 Report averaged 765,000, Four Corners, 743,000 and Media Watch, 607,000. Q&A, 528,000. Lateline, 240,000. Ten’s late News, 220,000. SBS News at 6.30pm, 250,000.

Comment: Four Corners last night was a good story buried inside an average effort. Rather than just naughty Goldman Sachs, it was very naughty Basis Capital, financial planners, regulators (here and in the US) and especially ratings agencies. So an independent director (based in Switzerland) dobbed GS into the SEC? Why didn’t he do it back in 2007, when Basis went under. Didn’t he think the Timberwolf CDO was a bad deal back then? And what was Basis doing taking money from uneducated investors via their financial planners here in Australia? That’s just plain rotten.

Basis should have inquired as to who the clients of the planners were and whether they knew what a hedge fund really was and how risky it could be. But the story missed the role of the ratings agencies; it mentioned how they had rated these dud securities AAA, but the likes of Fitch, Moody’s and S&P are as culpable as GS and anyone else is in the whole subprime mess and in the Basis collapse.

Four Corners ventured down some of these streets, but just didn’t do the story justice. A weak effort compared to the high quality first report on the subprime mess with Paul Barry back in September, 2007.

The Stats:

FTA: Ten won last night and had its best audience figures of the year so, courtesy of Nine, and to a lesser extent, Seven won All People, 6pm to midnight, but Ten won all the demos and won All People between 6pm and 10.30pm. Seven had a share of 26.6%, Ten, 25.7%, Nine, 23.6%, the ABC, 15.2% and SBS, 8.9%. Seven won Sydney and Perth, Ten won the rest. Nine leads the week with 26.6% from Seven with 25.1% and Ten on 24.1%.

Main Channel: Ten won here quite easily with a share of 24.7%, from Seven with 22.3% and Nine on 21.6%. ABC 1 was on 12.9% and SBS ONE, 8.1%. Ten won everywhere bar Perth which was won by Seven. Nine leads the week with 23.2%, from Ten on 22.9% and Seven on 21.8%.

Digital: It’s Monday night and 7TWO had its usual win with a share of 4.3%, from GP on 2.0%, ABC 2 on 1.7%, ONE on 1.0%, and ABC 3 and SBS 3 on 0.7% each. That’s a total share of 11.4% for the six FTA digital channels. GO leads the week with 3.4%, from 7TWO with 3.3%.

Pay TV: Seven won with a share of 22.5%, from Ten with 21.7%, Nine on 19.9%, Pay TV, 13.4%, the ABC, 12.8% and SBS, 7.5%. That’s a total share of 86.6% for the 11 FTA channels. pay TV’s 100 plus channels shared the rest (13.4%).

Regional: Ten didn’t do so well in regional areas, as usual with programs like MasterChef or Good News Week. WIN/NBN won with a share of 27.6% from Prime/7Qld with 26.8%, SC Ten on 23.5%, the ABC, 16.2% and SBS, 6.0%. WIN/NBN won the main channels with 26.0% from Prime/7Qld on 23.4% and SC Ten on 22.8%. 7TWO won the digitals with 3.4%, from GO on 1.6%, ABC 2 on 1.2% and ABC 3, 1.0%. WIN/NBN lead the week with 29.5%, from Prime/7Qld with 25.6%.

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

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Seven won last week. It was one of Seven’s better weeks for the past couple of months. But Ten won the demos again as MasterChef delivered in spades, helped by Glee, The 7pm Project, Good News Week and Modern Family. Nine won Sunday night as the audience for Underbelly dipped to just over 1.38 million, the lowest for the past two series. It might have been the holiday Sunday night (MasterChef‘s audience was down as well), but it’s not a good look so close to the end of the series.

It should be galling for the AFL, but just 50,000 people in Sydney watched the Swans play Port on Saturday evening. The same night 280,000 people in Sydney watched South Korea play Greece and 92,000 people got early Sunday to watch England and the USA draw.

Games on Friday night and Saturday night between teams that have little interest in Sydney, drew more viewers than the Swans game did. The AFL and its media mates can argue that the World Cup is a one off series, which it is, but it is generating the sort of buzz among soccer fans that the AFL can only aspire to, certainly more buzz that the AFL’s stunt of buying NRL player, Israel Folau.

Around 1.1 million people watched Australia get its required soccer lesson from Germany early Monday morning on SBS. Last night 195,000 people watched Holland play Denmark live on SBS (488,000 nationally). Japan vs. Cameroon saw 66,000 people watch in Sydney of 191,000 nationally around 11.30 pm. Japan won.

TONIGHT: Foreign Correspondent on the ABC at 8pm. The final of Australia’s Got Talent on Seven from 7.30pm. MasterChef on Ten and Modern Family. Nine has Top Gear. SBS has lots and lots of World Cup action and noise!

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

Peter Fray

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