The Winners: A reasonable night of TV for viewers. Sherlock was a bit weaker than last week. Ten did well, especially in the demos with Modern Family and Offspring. Ten won 16 to 39 and 18 to 49, Seven won 25 to 54s and 16 to 54s. A close night. Perhaps the small fall in the audience for Sherlock was a key difference on a week earlier.

  1. Junior MasterChef (Ten) (7.30pm) — 1.445 million
  2. Seven News (6pm) — 1.445 million
  3. Nine News (6pm) — 1.231 million
  4. 60 Minutes (Nine) (7.30pm) — 1.225 million
  5. Sunday Night (Seven) (6.30pm) — 1.201 million
  6. Bones (Seven) (9pm) — 1.092 million
  7. The X Factor (Seven) (7.30pm) — 1.079 million
  8. Modern Family (Ten) (7pm) — 1.020 million
  9. Sherlock (Nine) (8.30pm) — 1.003 million

The Losers: Another solid night. No real losers.

News & CA: Meet The Press had its best figures for months yesterday. 60 Minutes had a good story about an Australian WW 2 fighter pilot that was well told. Sunday Night had a slick PR job for Andrew Forrest of Fortescue who doesn’t need it any more. Seven News won Sydney, lost Melbourne, and won Brisbane by a stunning 172,000 viewers, 400,000 to 228,000. Seven also won Perth, Nine won Adelaide by a solid margin.

  1. Seven News (6pm) — 1.445 million
  2. Nine News (6pm) — 1.231 million
  3. 60 Minutes (Nine) (7.30pm) — 1.225 million
  4. Sunday Night (Seven) (6.30pm) — 1.201 million
  5. ABC News (7pm) — 857,000
  6. Ten News (5pm) — 529,000
  7. Dateline (SBS) (8.30pm) — 205,000
  8. SBS News (6.30pm) — 155,000

In the morning:

  1. Weekend Sunrise (Seven) (8am) — 368,000
  2. Landline (ABC) (Noon) — 237,000
  3. Weekend Today (Nine) (8am) — 211,000
  4. Insiders (ABC) (9am) — 184,000
  5. Inside Business (ABC) (10am) — 125,000
  6. Offsiders (ABC) (10.30am) — 120,000
  7. Meet The Press (Ten) (8am) — 77,000

The Stats:

  • FTA: Seven won narrowly with 28.8%, from 28.4% for Nine, 21.2% for Ten, 16.1% for the ABC and 5.5% for SBS.
  • Main Channel: Seven won a bit more clearly with a share of 24.3%, from Nine on 22.6%, Ten with 17.8%, ABC 1 on 14.2% and SBS ONE with 4.2%.
  • Digital: Nine’s GO was the clear winner with 4.6%, from ONE with 3.4% for its F-1 coverage, 7Mate was on 3.0%, 1.3% for SBS TWO, 1.2% for Gem, 1.1% for ABC 2 and 0.4% each for News 24 and ABC 3. That’s a total FTA share for the nine channels of 16.2%.
  • Pay TV: Seven won with a share of 24.0% for its three channels, from Nine on 23.7% with its trio, Ten’s two totalled 17.7%, Pay TV and its 100 channels, 13.6%, The four channels of the ABC had a total of 13.5% and SBS’s two channels totalled 4.6%. That left 86.4% for the FTA channels, made up of 14.0% for the nine digital channels and 72.4% for the five main channels. Pay TV’s share was highest in Sydney with 15.0% and lowest in Adelaide with 10.8%. Perth was on 13.3%, Brisbane, 14%, Melbourne 13%, Perth, 13.3%.
  • Regional: Prime/7Qld won with a share of 31.5%, from WIN/NBN on 29.6%, SC Ten on 18.8%, the ABC with 14.9% and SBS on 5.2%. Prime/7Qld scored a surprisingly big win in the main channels, 26.8% to 21.3% for WIN/NBN as Sherlock didn’t rate. It didn’t make the top 10 list of most watched programs. GO scored a now usual big win in the digitals, 6.2% to 3.2% for 7Mate and 2.3% for ONE. (That means viewing of digital channels was heavily influenced by young male viewers last night in regional areas, as all three channels skew to them). The nine digital channels had a high FTA total share of 18.2% last night.

Major Markets: Daylight saving time differences influenced the viewing of ONE and the F-1 cars. In Brisbane and Perth, ONE didn’t draw many viewers. It did though in Adelaide because they have had an F-1 car race. In Sydney and Melbourne, ONE was strong.

  • Sydney: Seven won overall and on the main channels from Nine and Ten. GO and ONE tied for top place in the digitals with 7Mate third. The digitals had a total FTA share of 14.4%.
  • Melbourne: Nine won here overall and in the main channels with a quite sharp turnaround from Sydney. ONE won the digitals from GO and 7Mate. The digitals had a total FTA share of 18.6%.
  • Brisbane: Seven beat Nine and Ten in that order overall and in the main channels. GO beat 7Mate and Gem in the digitals. The FTA share for the digital channels was 17.6%.
  • Adelaide: Seven won from Nine and Ten overall. In the main channels it was Seven from Nine with Ten and the ABC tied for third. GO beat ONE and 7TWO. The digitals had a share of 18.2%.
  • Perth: Seven won here also overall and in the main channels. GO beat 7Mate and SBS TWO in the digitals and the nine channels had an FTA share of 14.5%.

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

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Seven won All People and the main channels, Nine’s GO won the digitals. Seven won Sydney, Adelaide and Perth (overall and in the main channels), Nine won Brisbane and Melbourne, but Seven won the main channels. Nine did very well in the demos, especially with male viewers (Nine especially). Seven won women 35 and over.

Sherlock sank on last Sunday and Monday’s outings and I can see why. There’s nothing wrong with it, great cast, writing, suspenseful direction. But it is a series and now revolves around Moriarty (and to a lesser extent Mycroft Holmes), rather than Holmes solving modern crimes. Viewers like the story starting, peaking and ending in the one episode. And two hours is enough time to do that well, as Sherlock did last night. Viewers have proven to be resistant to the charms of the ongoing episodic series, especially involving a master criminal type.

Tonight, for example, Nine bring back a fresh episode of The Mentalist which will start and end tonight, with perhaps a hint of something else. Same characters, different stories each week are OK in the minds of viewers. But not a storyline that requires you to watch each week or each showing to keep up. It’s why Lost and Desperate Housewives have faded (plus viewer indifference). Packed to the Rafters is of course a big exception to this rule, but there is usually a start, climax and finish in each episode.

On the digital channels, it was a triumph for male viewers with GO, ONE and 7Mate, all channels programmed to attract youngish male viewers, doing very well and dominating the night. The strong figures for ONE contained a rejection of James Packer’s desire to stop sport being shown on it.

TONIGHT: The ABC’s wall of news and current affairs from 7pm. Watch Australian Story and Four Corners (both look excellent from the promos). Be careful with Q&A, its ancient history with John Howard. Seven goes The X Factor and fresh Criminal Minds. Ten has Junior MasterChef and Undercover Boss.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

Peter Fray

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