First let me apologise to everyone who didn’t watch Shaun Micallef’s Mad As Hell at 8.30 on ABC last night, or the program that followed, Stop Laughing This is Serious, which is the video history of Australian comedy. They were rotten programs, too funny, too interesting. So don’t watch again you ungrateful … More than a million people laughed as they watched Stop Laughing, over 900,000 were as Mad As Hell with Shaun Micallef — which was easily the best episode of the current series so far.

In fact the big message from Stop Laughing is how the commercial networks have abandoned comedy and satire after being leaders in the eighties and nineties. Seven and Ten, not Nine, except with Graham Kennedy in the early years of TV. Ten has dabbled in recent years, as has Seven, but they have departed the scene. The ABC and SBS are now the only networks having a go, and they are limited by money — not talent, as Legally Brown showed on SBS last year.

Both were a welcome offerings to the usual fare these nights of The Beast being unleashed by its handlers at Seven at 7.30pm to chase down and devour the competition. Last night My Kitchen Rules had an elimination and the two Brisbane blokes were tipped off. Nine was back someway in the distance, behind daylight in second a third. The ABC easily accounted for a weak Ten (whose figures though are still up on last year’s appalling weak performance). Still Ten’s main channel share was 9.6% in the metros and a very weak 7.6% in the regions where Ten management has forgotten about in its daily boasting about how its audience has improved on 2014. Funny that!  Nine’s The Block is adding viewers as it moves towards the end of what has been an uninspiring series, which will give nIne heart. But it was still 900,000 viewers behind The Beast and that is an awful lot of ad revenue.

And at 5.30pm he’s still trying for the 1.016 million on Million Dollar Minute. Seven hopes he keeps winning, but losing for a while longer. It’s boosting its 6pm news figures and those for the 6.30pm production of the news plus Today Tonight. MDM had 1.116 million national viewers last night. It will be up against the closing half hour of the first session of the Cricket World Cup Semi Final on Nine between Australia and India.

Network channel share:

  1. Seven (37.0%)
  2. Nine (25.4%)
  3. ABC (17.8%)
  4. Ten (14.3%)
  5. SBS (5.4%)

Network main channels:

  1. Seven (27.3%)
  2. Nine (18.2%)
  3. ABC (14.0%)
  4. Ten (9.6%)
  5. SBS ONE (4.4%)

Top 5 digital channels: 

  1. 7TWO (5.4%)
  2. 7mate (4.4%)
  3. GO (4.0%)
  4. Gem (3.2&)
  5. Eleven (3.1%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. My Kitchen Rules (Seven) – 2.204 million
  2. Seven News — 1.456 million
  3. Home and Away (Seven) — 1.370 million
  4. Nine News — 1.320 million
  5. The Block (Nine) — 1.302 million
  6. ABC  News – 1.170 million
  7. Million Dollar Minute (Seven) — 1.116 million
  8. Stop Laughing This is Serious (ABC) — 1.094 million
  9. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 1.003 million
  10. A Current Affair (Nine) — 996,000

Top metro programs:

  1. My Kitchen Rules (Seven) – 1.522 million
  2. Seven News — 1.110 million
  3. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 1.003 million

Losers: Anyone who missed Mad As Hell and Stop Laughing —- losers, losers, losers.Metro news and current affairs:

  1. Seven News — 1.110 million
  2. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 1.003 million
  3. Nine News — 920,000
  4. Nine News 6.30 — 894,000
  5. A Current Affair (Nine) – 836,000
  6. ABC News – 795,000
  7. 7.30 (ABC) — 613,000
  8. Ten Eyewitness News — 544,000
  9. The Project 7pm (Ten) — 520,000
  10. The Project 6.30pm (Ten) — 399,000

Morning TV:

  1. Sunrise (Seven) – 347,000
  2. Today (Nine) – 288,000
  3. The Morning Show (Seven) — 133,000
  4. News Breakfast (ABC,  89,000 + 43,000 on News 24) — 132,000
  5. Mornings (Nine) — 97,000
  6. Studio 1o (Ten) — 59,000

Top pay TV channels:

  1. Fox 8  (3.4%)
  2. LifeStyle  (3.2%)
  3. ARENA, TVHITS  (2.0%)
  4. UKTV, Disney Jr (1.5%))

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. Selling Houses Australia (LifeStyle) – 151,000
  2. Gogglebox Australia (LifeStyle) – 131,000
  3. The Flash (Fox8) – 101,000
  4. Sterlo:On The Couch (Fox Sports 1) – 71,000
  5. El Dorado (Fox Classics) – 63,000

*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.) and network reports.

Peter Fray

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