Birth for a nation

By David Knox on November 29, 2009 / Filed Under News 13

raftrubyThe final week of the ratings year is over and it was a Rafters baby that defeated singing Idols, Celebrity Masterchefs, new Apprentices, Geeks and Robbie Williams. Seven enjoyed a clean sweep of Week 48, winning all 7 nights, 3 key demos and all 5 cities -it was almost a microcosm of 2009, but this year Nine has seen to it that it didn’t quite enjoy that triumph.

The Seven Network won Week 48 with 31.3% over Nine’s 26.8% and TEN’s 21.3%. The ABC had 15.2% and SBS 5.4%.

GO! had 3.1% over 7TWO on 1.9%, ABC2 1.5%, ONE 0.8% and SBS TWO on 0.3%%.

Packed to the Rafters‘ birth of Ruby netted Seven a big 2.04m, just short of their recent wedding. The network’s other big shows were The Force, Border Security, Unlikely Animal Friends, Seven News, Today Tonight, Highway Patrol, Bones and Better Homes and Gardens. Beauty & the Geek Australia won its slot for its finale but didn’t better previous highs. Saturday’s Ratatouille movie was a big winner on 1.24m and even Merry Madagascar topped 1m. City Homicide also finished the year on 1.01m -a long way from its 2008 finale. FlashForward fell below the 1m mark while the last My Name is Earl was a round 500,000. In a head to head battle with 60 Minutes, Sunday Night won with 1.17m and a big news story involving the South Australian Premier, who has since threatened legal action. Sunrise kept ahead of Today and Deal or No Deal seems to have addressed the threat from Hot Seat lately. Once again The Morning Show thumped its competition, as it has all year. Stargate Atlantis was a clear winner on 7TWO up to 180,000 -well ahead of Heroes on 132,000 in second place. Seven thrashed Nine on Tuesday and Friday.

1.27m for Two and a Half Men on Nine last week, dropping back from Week 47. The Mentalist was the only other show to pass the 1.2m mark this week, leaving The Big Bang Theory, All Star Twenty20, Getaway, Nine News, A Current Affair, 50 to 1, RPA Where Are They Now? and an earlier 60 Minutes to follow. The ARIA Awards disappointed on 708,000 with a lacklustre production devoid of attitude. At least the enthusiasm for The Apprentice Australia was more universal, ending on 834,000. The good result for the cricket bodes well for Nine’s summer. GO! still rules digital channels with The Big Bang Theory‘s best episode on 316,000.

Some cheerful news for TEN brands last week as ambivalent audiences returned for grand finals. Australian Idol‘s closing moments sang to 1.47m -down on 2008 but after a lacklustre year it was a welcome relief. Ditto for Celebrity MasterChef as audiences returned to watch Eamon Sullivan’s win, netting 1.29m. Extra Idol & Masterchef aside, TEN’s other winners for the week were all roughly attracting similar figures: Hamish & Andy ReGifted, Talkin’ ‘Bout Your Generation, NCIS and Glee. Rush finished the year on 989,000. The 7PM Project moved from 692,000 to a poor 476,000. UFC Wired was 84,000 on ONE. But TEN plummeted on Saturday whacked by all but SBS and down to just 13.2%.

Week 48 was one of the ABC’s softest all year. Without Spicks and Specks, Midsomer Murders, the best audience it could manage was Monday night’s ABC News with 1.01m viewers. Elders with Andrew Denton and The Bill did well. The last ever Einstein Factor ended with 666,000 and Sunday Arts 139,000. The New Inventors‘ grand final was 657,000 and the excellent Samson and Delilah took 646,000. Friday’s Wire in the Blood repeat was 692,000 which saw ABC finish on an unusually soft 16.0% share for Friday. Doctor Who reached 114,000 on ABC2. ABC whipped TEN on Saturday, easily its best night.

The real story on SBS isn’t the 681,000 for Top Gear but the 663,000 who stayed for Man Vs Wild -could the show be the network’s next breakout hit? SBS ditched South Park in the slot to make way for the show and it’s really paying off now. Who Do You Think You Are?, Luke Nguyen’s Vietnam, Demetri’s Castle, Mythbusters, Iron Chef and RocKwiz all followed. The last East West 101 had to settle for 139,000.

Week 48

13 Comments »

  1. franz chong November 30, 2009 at 5:00 pm -

    All SBS has to work on now is on some decent Monday Night Offerings that follow their late night News Bulletin.
    I used to stick around for Skins or Shameless but with those gone I see the rubbish they have now.Boring Now I switch off come 10pm

  2. Matt November 30, 2009 at 11:12 am -

    Man vs wild is definitely developing a cult following. I’ve been watching the ratings and have no doubt they’ll continue to swell.

  3. Jed November 29, 2009 at 10:08 pm -

    If people really want to understand the whole ‘blackface’ thing and why the Hey Hey skit was so controversial in America, they should probably see the movie Birth of a Nation.

    Didn’t think Ratatouille would rate so well, especially for a Saturday night movie. First run movies do actually rate well, take the hint networks. Repeat movies are not wanted.

  4. hoople November 29, 2009 at 8:23 pm -

    agreed harry – mr deeds? no thanks!

  5. David Knox November 29, 2009 at 5:21 pm -

    FJ: Rafters was the top show in the country last week and 2m is an excellent figure. But I guess not everybody is familiar with the landmark US film “Birth of a Nation.”

  6. Harry November 29, 2009 at 4:50 pm -

    TEN need better movies. They play every movie they have every month. Lift your game. Wouldve been nice to see Rush finish above 1 mill, but 990k was a good result.

    Bring on ’10.

  7. Zambora November 29, 2009 at 3:11 pm -

    Now we have to wait to see if the networks will pay attention to the viewers or will they go their own way and believe just their own Yes men

  8. franz chong November 29, 2009 at 2:26 pm -

    Anything has got to be an improvement on those old recycled South Park Episodes some of which date back to the 2004 to 2007 seasons.The Anal Probe Episode was the last straw that saw me switch to Tens Good News Week and put me off SBS permanently between the hours of 8:30 and 9:30pm till they put something decent on.
    I will give this documentary a chance while GNW is off the air for the summer of Man versus Wild to see if it is any good.

  9. FJ November 29, 2009 at 12:23 pm -

    A nation?

    2 million out of 22 million is hardly a nation. It’s not even 10%.

  10. David Knox November 29, 2009 at 12:03 pm -

    Chris I will be doing several stories on the year in ratings. Just waiting for all the info to come in.

  11. Ryan November 29, 2009 at 11:48 am -

    “microcosm” – too much for a Sunday morning David, I had to fire up dictionary.com on that one!

  12. Vic November 29, 2009 at 11:13 am -

    I have to say I’m happy Man vs Wild is becoming somewhat of a hit. It’s a good show, and thematically a better fit for SBS (I feel like with the increased local production, and increased sourcing of high quality US shows, we’re starting to see SBS grow up).

    Nice to see GO! doing well (300k viewers on a digital only channel is a damn good accomplishment), and while I’m not a fan of the show, it’s nice to see people actually tuning into Stargate.

    I honestly thought more people would be tuning in for the UFC, but I’m guessing it’s more an inditement on the “popularity” of ONE. I love the channel, but for most people, it’s an afterthought, at best.

  13. Chris November 29, 2009 at 11:13 am -

    Hi David, will you be listing how many weeks each network won, in total and demos etc? interested to know who won what, and not after reading their spin!!
    Thanks for the great work

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