Ten’s night. Masterchef stood out with top place in the metros and second nationally. That helped boost the audience for Have You Been Paying Attention into the top 10 nationally (and its biggest ever audience) and Ten to the top of the metro main channels (and a big win in the demos). Masterchef managed 1.709 million national viewers, a season high as we head to the finale.

In the regionals Masterchef (423,000) was just outside the top five programs. Seven News led the way with 692,000, followed by Home and Away on 536,000, with The Chase Australia 5.30pm on 532,000, Seven News/Today Tonight on 523,000 and Highway Patrol on 482,000

But at 9.35pm Q&A did very well with 1.091 million viewers. It was close to if not the best audience for the program this year so far, thanks to Pauline Hanson. The audience was bigger than anything during the long election campaign, certainly the one on ones with Prime Minister Turnbull and Opposition Leader Shorten.

But there was also an element of a bear baiting audience last night as viewers watched for and got clashes between Senator-elect Hanson, Sam Dastyari, the ALP Senator and the Greens Senator, Larissa Waters, who is also from Queensland. It ended up being predictable TV, unlike the previous week where the Steve Price sledge of Van Badham seemed to erupt out of nowhere. Be that as it may, last night’s Q&A showed up why only the ABC can host a program like that with such as line up.

Remember The Verdict on Nine last year? Gone to God because it was manufactured, confected populism and badly run. For all its inevitability last night, Q&A was still good TV — dare I say it, populist — and proved to all the hand wringers on the ABC in other programs and radio — and all those in the commentariat — that populism is good if firmly marshalled by the host, as Tony Jones showed last night. Populism isn’t bad —  it is the nature of politics and every day discussion and some of the most strident hand wingers on the ABC engage in it every day or week.

Today (308,000) started the week with a win in breakfast over Sunrise (295,000).

And by the way: the next series of Game of Thrones will be back in 2017 with seven episodes, but not around April, but in the northern summer, so around three months later than usual, at this stage.

Network channel share:

  1. Seven (26.1%)
  2. Ten (23.9%)
  3. Nine (22.8%)
  4. ABC (21.5%)
  5. SBS (5.7%)

Network main channels:

  1. Ten (19.1%)
  2. Seven (18.4%)
  3. Nine (17.1%)
  4. ABC (16.3%)
  5. SBS ONE (4.1%)

Top 5 digital channels: 

  1. 7TWO (3.6%)
  2. ABC 2 (3.4%)
  3. ONE (3.0%)
  4. 7mate (2.6%)
  5. GO (2.2%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. Seven News  — 1.946 million
  2. Masterchef Australia (Ten) — 1.709 million
  3. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 1.674 million
  4. Nine News — 1.407 million
  5. The Chase Australia 5.30pm (Seven) — 1.317 million
  6. Home and Away (Seven) — 1.288 million
  7. Highway Patrol (Seven) — 1.222 million
  8. ABC News — 1.219 million
  9. A Current Affair (Nine) — 1.177 million
  10. Have You Been Paying Attention (Ten) — 1.177 million

Top metro programs:

  1. Masterchef Australia (Ten) — 1.286 million
  2. Seven News — 1.254 million
  3. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 1.150 million
  4. Nine News — 1.050 million

Losers: Nine and Seven: another weak offering from the duo.

Metro news and current affairs:

  1. Seven News — 1.254 million
  2. Seven News/Today Tonight — 1.150 million
  3. Nine News (6.30pm) — 1.050 million
  4. Nine News — 965,000
  5. ABC News – 839,000
  6. A Current Affair (Nine) – 838,000
  7. Australian Story (ABC) — 792,000
  8. Q&A (ABC) — 780,000
  9. The Project 7pm (Ten) — 761,000
  10. 7.30 (ABC) — 687,000

Morning TV:

  1. Today (Nine) – 308,000
  2. Sunrise (Seven) – 295,000
  3. The Morning Show (Seven) — 187,000
  4. News Breakfast (ABC 1,  125,000 + 54,000 on News 24) — 177,000
  5. Today Extra (Nine) — 141,000
  6. Studio 10 (Ten) — 89,000

Top five pay TV channels:

  1. Fox Sports 1 (2.8%)
  2. TVHITS  (2.5%)
  3. Nick Jr (2.1%)
  4. Fox8 (1.8%)
  5. LifeStyle, Sky News, Disney Jr, UKTV, (1.5%)

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. NRL: Easts v Cronulla (Fox Sports 1) — 246,000
  2. Monday Night With Matty Johns (Fox Sports 1) — 125,000
  3. The Kettering Incident (showcase) — 104,000
  4. AFL: 360 (Fox Footy) – 104,000
  5. AFL: On The Couch (Fox Footy) — 85,000

*Data © OzTAM Pty Limited 2016. 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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