Well, for the first time since The Voice  started on April 7, Seven has bested Nine in prime time. Thanks to a strong night for Packed To The Rafters and My Kitchen Rules, Seven won overall and the main channels in metro and regional markets. That’s despite The Voice again topping the night with 2.730 million national/ 1.892 million metro/ 837,000 regional viewers. MKR averaged 2.475 million national/ 1.674 million metro/ 812,000 regional viewers, while Packed To The Rafters had 2.194 million national/ 1.422 million metro/ 772,000 regional viewers, and dragged Seven home over the finishing line, in front of Nine in metro markets, 33.6% to 31.3%.

Seven (through Prime/7Qld) scored a bigger win in regional areas, 35.3% to 30.5% for Nine (WIN/NBN) overall. The win in the main channels was just as dominant, 28.9% to 24.7% as Nine’s other programs couldn’t match Rafters‘ strength, which was again very noticeable in regional areas.

Nine paid the price of not having a strong enough second-tier program (like it did on Monday night, for example, with House Husbands). Nine had The Following (1.071 million national/ 757,000 metro/ 314,000 regional). Its audience was half that of Rafters, and Nine suffered as a result. Ten was again weak and should have really done better than the ABC. But its big programs, The Biggest Loser and NCIS, both failed to have an impact.  NCIS did better with 880,000 national/ 595,000 metro/ 285,000 regional viewers, but The Biggest Loser with 577,000 national/ 382,000 metro/ 195,000 regional viewers) is now in dangerous territory. The figures for last night are close to those that saw American Idol pulled and shifted to a digital channel.

Nine did a news special at 6.30pm on the Boston bombings, and it averaged 1.374 million national/,1.326 million metro (it wasn’t broadcast in all regional markets). But the real eye opener was the ABC’s News Breakfast — it had a total of 267,000 national viewers on ABC1 and News 24 across the country (95,000 on ABC1 and 71,000 on News 24 in metro markets). In fact, there was a real tune into News Breakfast, and its figures were up around by 80% or more on what it usually gets.  Sunrise (6178,000 national) and Today (552,000 national) also reported a rise in viewers, but it was smaller than for News Breakfast. On pay TV Sky News did well, with its share rising and its main evening program, Paul Murray Live, jumping to just over 51,000 viewers. Audiences for other news channels, such as CNN and Fox, also rose.

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With The Voice not on air tonight but MKR airing at 7.30pm, Seven will win well and close the gap on Nine, which leads the week with 33.5% to 31.7% for Seven.

Network channel share:

  1. Seven (33.6%)
  2. Nine (31.3%)
  3. ABC (15.1%)
  4. Ten (14.8%)
  5. SBS (5.2%)

Main channels:

  1. Seven (27.8%)
  2. Nine (26.4%)
  3. ABC 1 (11.3%)
  4. Ten (10.9%)
  5. SBS ONE (4.4%)

Top five digital channels:

  1. 7TWO (3.5%)
  2. GO (3.0%)
  3. 7mate (2.4%)
  4. ABC2, Eleven (2.2%)
  5. Gem (1.8%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. The Voice  (Nine) – 2.730 million
  2. My Kitchen Rules (Seven) – 2.475 million
  3. Packed To the Rafters (Seven) — 2.194 million
  4. Seven News– 2.000 million
  5. Nine News — 1.931 million
  6. Home and Away (Seven) — 1.429 million
  7. A Current Affair (Nine)– 1.428 million
  8. ABC1 News — 1.394 million
  9. Nine News Special –– 1.374 million
  10. Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.357 million

Top metro programs:

  1. The Voice (Nine) — 1.892 million
  2. My Kitchen Rules (Seven) — 1.674 million
  3. Packed To The Rafters (Seven) — 1.422 million
  4. Seven News — 1.327 million
  5. Nine News — 1.326 million
  6. Nine News Special — 1.316 million
  7.  A Current Affair (Nine) — 1.211 million
  8. Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.094 million

Losers: Ten, just not enough oomph, Nine, because whatever reason (budget cuts, arrogance, a shortage of ideas), it didn’t have a strong enough program to match Seven’s Packed To The Rafters, and lost the night. 

News and current affairs:

  1. Seven News– 1.327 million
  2. Nine News  – 1.326 million
  3. Nine News Special — 1.316 million
  4. A Current Affair (Nine) — 1.211 million
  5. Today Tonight (Seven) — 1.094 million
  6. ABC1 News — 904,000
  7. Ten News– 717,000
  8. 7.30  (ABC1) – 624,000
  9. Foreign Correspondent (ABC1) — 528,000
  10. The Project (Ten) — 478,000

Morning TV:

  1. Sunrise (Seven) – 392,000
  2. Today (Nine) – 366,000
  3. News Breakfast (ABC1) – 95,000 + 71,000 on News 24

Top five pay TV channels:

  1. Fox 8 – 2.5%
  2. TV1 – 2.3%
  3. Sky News – 2.1%
  4. LifeStyle — 1.8%
  5. UKTV – 1.4%.

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. The Simpsons (Fox 8) – 105,000
  2. AFL: 360 (Fox Footy) – 89,000
  3. Family Guy  (Fox 8) – 87,000
  4. Geordie Shore (MTV) – 64,000
  5. Law and Order CI (TV1) – 54,000

Tonight: Mad As Hell, QI, The Thick of It on ABC1. MKR on Seven (at your discretion). Nine has a fresh Big Bang Theory and then another episdoe of The FollowingMr and Mrs Murder on Ten and then The Good Wife.

*Data © OzTAM Pty Limited 2013. The data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) in whole or in part, without the prior written consent of OzTAM. (All shares on the basis of combined overnight 6pm to midnight all people.) Plus network reports.