Packed to the Ratings

By David Knox on September 3, 2008 / Filed Under News 13

In the numbers game, networks get certainly excited when a new show premieres to a big audience. But they are positively pumped when it goes UP a week later.

Last week Packed to the Rafters premiered to an impressive 1.94m viewers.

Last night in its second episode it went past the magical two million figure, with 2.04m. That’s gotta be good news, and it contradicts the myth that American dramas always outrate homegrown material.

The trend in new television shows is generally to drop for a second episode, as premieres always entail a curiosity factor, and a proportion of the audience who then decide the show isn’t their cup of tea.

If networks are lucky they eventually start to re-build that audience slowly across forthcoming weeks. It’s known in the biz as the “J Curve.”

So for Packed to the Rafters to build on its second week is a strong vote of confidence by the audience. It would seem Seven has timed it well in producing a show that doesn’t have a police / medical or legal story engine. In coming weeks the show will also vary its storytelling, including something of a “flashback” episode that demonstrates more backstory.

Tuesday night also saw the first episode of TEN’s new cop series, Rush. It attracted 1.16m viewers at 9:30pm, which was good considering there was interest in All Saints (1.31m) following the death of actor Mark Priestley.

TEN knows that even if it doesn’t win the timeslot that it needs to give this project time to develop. It hasn’t been quite so proud of a new baby in some time.

Week 36

13 Comments »

  1. hey September 5, 2008 at 10:50 pm -

    Packed To The Rafters is such a good drama, thank god theres something else to watch than the same old crime drama, we’ve already got a good one do something original!

  2. Jack! September 4, 2008 at 6:04 pm -

    I think we are all being very generous with our viewing of Packed at this point in time … not much else to watch … it is definitely not as good as it could have been and some characters are just a bore … but at least the two guys living next door are hot! Watch the ratings disappear in the next couple of weeks …
    Jack!

  3. Alex September 3, 2008 at 10:49 pm -

    Seven seems to get really lucky with dramas – Nine have always done the well and usually the best but they either shove it in at 9.30 (Stingers) lose their main cast while the shows ratings 2 mill (Water Rats) or have a show that would’ve rated 2 mil banned in its biggest market (Underbelly).

    9 always seems to do the big budget glossy and epic dramas while 7 does the backyard family oriented dramas.

  4. Neil September 3, 2008 at 10:41 pm -

    Douglas, you may be onto something….yep, Underbelly was indeed amazing (not like us melbournians would know of course….), but generally i havnt been a big fan on Nine drama’s…Seven have had a home run of recent, and PTTR is an amazing show that deserves these numbers

    Everyone iv spoken with loves this show…first show in a while my whole family will happily watch AND enjoy
    Acting is brilliant, and the script s are well balanced with no over the top storylines or crazy ideas. Even last nights inclusion of drug references seemed to stream right into the episode…of i could change one thing,it would be the lame intro card (come on, Rush got some slick credits, how about it Seven?)

  5. Leith September 3, 2008 at 7:32 pm -

    One of the things I love most about Rafters, is that the major story arcs have been intriguing enough to make me want to watch the following week, without verging on soapish storylines. It was one of the things I loved about Always Greener, there was nothing too extraordinary about it but it wasn’t long before I was in love with the characters. I look forward to this show hopefully sticking around a few more years!

  6. Douglas September 3, 2008 at 5:45 pm -

    Sven have a real feel for this drama: City Homicide last year, All Saints many, many, many moons ago, and now Packed to the Rafters (I like all three, the should put them all together on one night). Nine never really did Australian Drama all to well if you ask me.

    @Luise, I agree with you: another season of Rafters would be good, as would a third of City Homicide.

  7. ryan September 3, 2008 at 3:41 pm -

    i would watch this but its against my 2 fav shows so not goin to happen

  8. Luise September 3, 2008 at 2:46 pm -

    Great to see an Aussie drama increase like Rafters has. It’s also good to see a show filmed in Southern Sydney exceed.

    Here’s hoping the ratings continue for Rafters so it can get a second season renewal along with a third season renewal for City Homicide.

    Also wanted to say kudos to Seven for doing the poignant tribute to Mark to bookend the All Saints episode.

  9. Skye September 3, 2008 at 2:03 pm -

    I’m planning to quite happily fall in love with this show. The acting has been superb, and the story lines have that perfect mix of subtle comedy, and drama. I love the way the Rafter parents have taken turns to narrate, thus far. It all feels so tangible.

    I really hope that the writers give us the chance to watch this unfold slowly – as it deserves to be treated gently, to ensure that it will be here for the long haul.

  10. Belinda September 3, 2008 at 1:41 pm -

    I also found the advertising unappealing so didn’t watch the first episode last week. After hearing no bad reports on the show after last week’s incredible ratings, I managed to catch yesterday’s midday encore and it is not a bad show. I’m not sure it deserves those figures though.

  11. ka-ching September 3, 2008 at 1:38 pm -

    I have enjoyed the first couple of episodes – the right mix of serious storylines and comedic ones. I only hope the writers and producers resist the temptation and don’t let it get too far fetched as it goes on. I think this is what led to the decline of Always Greener. You have to have some empathy with the characters to keep watching – if they go all weird and ridiculous I know I will go back to the cop shows.

  12. Craig September 3, 2008 at 12:05 pm -

    that is huge for Rafters, id be curious to know when an aussie dramas last increased for its second ep..so, not only did the 1.9m that watched last week enjoy it, they told some other people about it, who also watched it last night..
    I have to say, I found the ads for it during the olympics a bit cringeworthy so havetn watched it yet, but with the good word of mouth its getting, I might check it out next week
    BTW David – love the new site, took a little while to find my way around, but all good now..great upgrade!

  13. Craig September 3, 2008 at 11:58 am -

    I’m watching 2.3 men and recording Pack, so I have a copy to watch again, it sure is a good sigh but time will tel if it holds onto the ratings. It is nice to have a non cop/medical local show.

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