The Glenn Dyer breakdown: Well how did Ten’s new Super Sunday line up go? It was the second time this year that Ten has used this idea (it started the year’s ratings battle with the same idea and most of the programs). The experience at the start of the year was an initial cheer, then sadness as the ratings sagged.

Last night we saw a a repeat of how the first Super Sunday finished, badly for Ten. All that talk about fast tracking programs from the US from the net heads and early adopters a pile of hot air as, with the exception of the excellent Modern Family, most flopped. And the story will be worse for Ten as the rest of ratings plays out this year because the ratings will continue to fade or fail to fire, as they did at the start of the year.

All that recent hype about Homeland on the front page of TV lift outs and in program guides a figment of the imagination of excitable network publicists and TV writers given advance copies of the program, especially those males who seem besotted of Claire Danes. Homeland‘s problem is that its conspiracist rubbish of a kind the Americans love (think 24). The programs first have to be popular with local audiences to justify the hype around fast tracking (which is an issue this time each year for the past four or so years). Ten is desperate, short of ratings, losing money so the amount of noise it makes is always going to be loudest.

And it is not about demos as some would argue. If a program has more viewers overall, it will quite often have more viewers in the 16 to 39, 18 to 49 and 25 to 54 groups, as well as among men and women viewers. Ten’s programs last night just didn’t get enough viewers to have any major impact on the demos. Modern Family did the best of Ten’s fast tracked programs in the demos, as it was always going to. But Nine’s 60 Minutes, Big Brother and House Husbands, plus Anh‘s Vietnam visit (down 300,000 or so from its debut last week), and Sunday Night not only had more viewers than Ten’s line up, but they also dominated the most watched programs in the demos. In other words, viewers wanted to watch local programs ahead of the much-hyped offerings from the US on Ten.

Ten’s Merlin at 6.30pm had 558,000 metro and 811,000 national viewers, Modern Family, 850,000 (as expected) metro and 1.139 million nationally at 7.30 pm, the New Normal (gay couple hire single mother as a surrogate), 488,000 metro and just 683,000 national viewers. Homeland at 8.30pm, 633,000 metro and 858,000 nationally, and Vegas at 9.30pm, the real turkey of the night, just 286,000 metro and 433,000 national viewers.

Seven rushed Bones into the 8.30pm slot (853,000 metro and national viewers) after Killing Time bombed a week earlier. That pushed the weak Killing Time out to 9.30pm where it averaged 434,000 metro and national viewers. They are figures Ten would have been proud of. Strike Back (which, remember, started at 8.30pm a couple of weeks ago) was pushed back to 10.30pm and only could manage 210,000 metro viewers.

Nine’s new episode of The Mentalist at 9.30pm, 659,000 metro and almost 1.3 million national viewers. The upshot was that at 8.30pm, ABC1’s first Jack Irish telemovie averaged 942,000 metro and 1.34 million national viewers and won the 8.30 – 10pm slot. It finished around 10.10pm (and ran second in 8.30 to 9.30pm behind House Husbands). Hurrah as local viewers rejected the hype on Ten, Seven’s late switch and went for a local production of a strong, entertaining story that was driven by top acting and production values. House Husbands had just over a million metro and 1.5 million national viewers.

Tonight: ABC1’s news and current affairs hours. The second part of the Rod Laver story on Australian Story should be a highlight, along with Four Corners‘ report on Lance Armstrong. Seven starts a new series from the US called Scandal at 9.15pm (after The X Factor). Ten has the weak Can of Worms, after New Girl. Black Mirror on SBSOne at 9.30pm.

Last Week: Seven won in both metro and regional markets. Nine was second and Ten was third (overall), its best finish since early September. But in the main channels, Ten still ended up a weak third behind ABC1. The X Factor dominated last week and thanks to that in particular, Seven won the demos as well.

The top 10 national programs (metro & regional combined):

  1. Sunday Night (Seven) — 2.007 million.
  2. Anh Does Vietnam (Seven) — 1.942 million.
  3. 60 Minutes (Nine) — 1.896 million.
  4. Seven News — 1.701 million.
  5. House Husbands (Nine) — 1.508 million.
  6. Jack Irish: Bad Debts (ABC1) — 1.345 million.
  7. Nine News — 1.337 million.
  8. Bones (Seven) — 1.296 million.
  9. Big Brother (Nine) — 1.164 million.
  10. Great Southern Land (ABC1), 1.148 million.

The Metro Winners:

  1. Sunday Night (Seven, 6.30pm) — 1.354 million.
  2. 60 Minutes (Nine, 7.30pm) — 1.341 million.
  3. Anh Does Vietnam (Seven, 7.30pm) — 1.317 million.
  4. Seven News (6pm) — 1.206 million.
  5. House Husbands (Nine, 8.30pm) — 1.040 million.

The Losers: Ten, after after the demos are analysed. Super Sunday is just a PR invention. Viewers want substance and solid local productions, not US hype and rubbish. Nine’s The Mentalist and Seven’s Killing Time, which has already screened on Pay TV.

Metro News & CA: Nine News was surprisingly weak last night, less than a million viewers. Nine still won Melbourne as the Pristel experiment continues to alienate viewers. Seven though had huge margins in Brisbane (132,000), Adelaide (83,000) and Perth (105,000). Nine won Melbourne by 63,000, Seven won Sydney by 7,000.) Contrary to its name, Nine News: First At Five wasn’t, again.

  1. Sunday Night (Seven, 6.30pm) — 1.354 million.
  2. 60 Minutes (Nine, 7.30pm) — 1.341 million.
  3. Seven News (6pm) — 1.206 million.
  4. Nine News (6pm) — 942,000.
  5. ABC News (7pm) — 811,000.
  6. Ten News At Five –430,000.
  7. The Project (Ten, 6pm) — 322,000.
  8. Nine News First At Five — 253,000.
  9. World News Australia (SBS ONE, 6.30pm) — 195,000.

In the morning: Daylight Saving (a week later) seems to have cut viewer numbers for the morning chats on ABC1 and Ten, but not on Nine and Seven.

  1. Weekend Sunrise (Seven, 8am) — 301,000.
  2. Weekend Today (Nine, 8am) — 294,000.
  3. Landline (ABC1, 12pm) — 165,000.
  4. Insiders (ABC1, 9am) — 128,000 + on News 24.
  5. The Bolt Report rpt (Ten, 4.30pm) — 121,000.
  6. The Bolt Report (Ten, 10am) — 117,000.
  7. Offsiders (ABC1, 10.30am) — 110,000.
  8. Inside Business (ABC1, 10am) — 98,000.
  9. Meet The Press (Ten, 10.30am) — 89,000.

Metro FTA: Seven (3 channels) won with a share of 30.3% from Nine (3) on 28.4%, the ABC (4) was on 18.4%, Ten (3) was on 18.1% and SBS (4) ended on 4.7%. Main Channels: Seven won with a share of 22.8% from Nine on 21.6%, ABC 1 was on 14.9%, Ten was on 11.8% and BS ended on 4.2%.

Metro Digital: 7TWO won with a share of 4.0%, from ONE on 3.7%, GO was on 3.6%, 7mate, 3.5%, Gem was on 3.2%, Eleven ended on 2.6%, ABC1, 2.1%, ABC3 and News 24 ended with 0.7% each and SBSTwo was on 0.5%. The 10 digital channels had an FTA share of 24.6%.

Metro including Pay TV: Seven (3 channels) won with a share of 25.2% from Nine (3) on 23.6%, the ABC (4) was on 15.3%, Ten (3) was on 15.1% and SBS (4) ended on 3.9%. The 15 FTA channels had a total share last night of 85.5%. The 10 digital channels share last night was 20.6% and the five main channels had a share of 64.9%. The 200 plus channels on Foxtel gave Pay TV a share last night of 14.5%. Rove LA improved to be noticed last night in the top five programs

The top five pay TV channels were:

  1. Fox Sports 3 — 3.1%.
  2. Fox 8 — 2.8%.
  3. TV1 — 2.5%.
  4. Fox Sports 2 — 2.4%.
  5. LifeStyle, Fox Sports 1 — 2.3%

The five most-watched programs on pay TV were:

  1. Cricket: One Day Series (FS3) — 80,000.
  2. A League: C. Coast v Perth (FS1) — 78,000.
  3. A League: Melb. Heart v. Wellington (FS1) — 74,000.
  4. Modern Family (F8) — 69,000.
  5. Rove LA (F8) — 67,000.

Regional: Prime/7Qld (3 channels) won with a share of 33.2% from WIN/NBN (3) on 27.5%, the ABC (4) was on 17.9%, S C Ten (3) was on 17.8% and SBS (4) ended on 3.7%. Prime/7Qld won the main channels with 23.7%, from WIN/NBN on 20.4%, ABC 1 on 14.0% and SC Ten on 10.9%. 7mate won the digitals with 4.8% from 7TWO on 4.6%, GO on 4.1% and ONE on 4.0% because of the Formula 1 GP broadcast. The 10 digital channels had an FTA share last night of 27.8%.

The five most-watched programs in regional markets were:

  1. Sunday Night 654,000.
  2. Anh Does Vietnam — 627,000.
  3. 60 Minutes — 554,000.
  4. Seven News — 496,000.
  5. House Husbands — 467,000.

Major Metro Markets: A bit of a mixed night. Seven won (overall and main channels) in Sydney, Brisbane,. Adelaide and Perth. Nine won both in Melbourne. Ten was third overall in Brisbane and Perth. The ABC/ABC1 were third in other markets and the main channels. 7TWO won Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, GO won Sydney, 7mate won Perth.

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

Source: Oztam, TV Networks data

Peter Fray

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