The ABC kept viewers interested last night, with Malcolm Turnbull’s appearance on Q&A (689,000 on ABC and ABC News). The end result, it was just another notch on his end-of-year publicity round where he seems to have pitched his message to what he and his handlers thought the various media outlets might want to talk about. But on Q&A he did at least meet members of the audience who had their own minds and difficult questions.

Back Roads on the ABC (1.05 million national) was more than just a summer fill-in. Like the first ep on the town of Corryong (in Victoria’s high country), last night’s ep was set in an even more isolated part of Australia — the very outback area around Maree and the Oodnadatta Track in South Australia. Back Roads was again the most watched non-news program nationally.

Poor old Channel Seven seems to be running out of programs for even its digital channels — guess who re-appeared last night and is back again same time same channel on 7TWO tonight at 8.30pm? Yes, you got it in one: Inspector Morse has been brought out of retirement once again to do his duty (245,000 nationally). So now we have Endeavour (Morse as a stripling detective) on the ABC and Lewis has just retired, again (last week from 7TWO). And Frost is doing duty again on Wednesday nights after time on Monday evenings. The Vicar of Dibley has been out and about as well and no doubt Fawlty Towers will return soon. And Hogan’s Heroes and Frasier repeats are back on Ten’s Eleven, along with a host of favs from the ’80s and ’90s (Diagnosis Murder and Jake and the Fatman). Will and Grace are back, now that’s OK.

In regional markets Seven News was on top with 542,000, followed by Seven News/TT with 481,000, then Home and Away with 414,000. The 5.30pm part of The Chase was 4th with 351,000 and the repeat of an ep of Highway Patrol was 5th with 345,000. Back Roads was 6th with 341,000.

Network channel share:
1. Seven (26.8%)
2. Nine (26.4%)
3. ABC (22.0%)
4. Ten (16.0%)
5. SBS (8.8%)

Network main channels:
1. Nine (18.4%)
2. Seven (18.3%)
3. ABC (16.9%)
4. Ten (9.3%)
5. SBS ONE (5.7%)

Top 5 digital channels:
1. GO (4.2%)
2. ONE (3.8%)
3. 7TWO (3.6%)
4. ABC 2 (3.0%)
5. 7mate, Eleven (2.9%)

Top 10 national programs:
1. Seven News — 1.504 million
2. Seven News/Today Tonight — 1.44 million
3. Nine/NBN News 6.30 — 1.14 million
4. Nine/NBN News — 1.1 million
5. A Current Affair (Nine) — 1.07 million
6. 7pm ABC News — 1.06 million
7. Back Roads (ABC) — 1.05 million
8. Home and Away (Seven) — 1.04 million
9. The Chase Australia 5.30pm (Seven) — 947,000
10. 7.30 – Summer (ABC) — 941,000

Top metro programs: None with a million or more viewers

Losers: Not the ABC or SBS which tried.

Metro news and current affairs:
1. Seven News — 962,000
2. Seven News/Today Tonight — 955,000
3. Nine News 6.30pm — 885,000
4. Nine News — 857,000
5. A Current Affair (Nine) – 762,000
6. 7pm ABC News – 750,000
7. 7.30 – Summer (ABC) — 664,000
8. Foreign Correspondent (ABC) — 601,000
9. Media Watch (ABC) — 553,000
10. The Project 7pm (Ten) — 454,000

Morning TV:
1. Sunrise (Seven) – 533,000
2. Today (Nine) – 404,000
3. News Breakfast (ABC, 160,000 + 89,000 on News 24) — 249,000
4. The Morning Show (Seven) — 236,000
5. Today Extra (Nine) — 122,000
6. Studio 10 (Ten) — 50,000

Top five pay TV programs:
1. Outlander (Showcase) – 72,000
2. Paul Murray Live (Sky News) — 67,000
3. The Walking Dead (Fox) — 56,000
4. The Thundermans (Nickelodeon) – 56,000
5. A Place To Call Home (Showcase) – 50,000

*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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