Axed: City Homicide?

By David Knox on October 22, 2010 / Filed Under News 68

3AW has reported that Seven has axed its police drama City Homicide.

The series in its fourth season has been challenged by a slip in audiences and tough competition in the 8:30pm Wednesday timeslot.

This week it pulled 1.03m viewers against The Big Bang Theory 1.18m, second in its timeslot. When it previously aired in its original Monday slot it was pulling figures around 1.8m viewers. Back in 2007 it had less competition from rival local dramas.

Last year the show also screened on Sunday nights.

Noni Hazlehurst recently spoke to TV Tonight about the challenges for the show when it was moved around the schedule, including with late starts.

“There are a lot things impacting on figures, but I don’t think shifting timeslots helps,” she insists.

“I truly believe once something is working in a timeslot you do not move it. But that’s not my decision to make.

“People like reliability. It’s not easy to change viewing habits and I think people get annoyed.”

It isn’t just the changes from Monday to Sunday to Wednesday that factor into the equation, either.

“I personally would like to see it start at 8:30 too but that’s not my call. That’s a decision made for a number of reasons,” she says.

The show has surely boasted a strong cast including Shane Bourne, Nadine Garner, Damien Richardson, David Field, Aaron Pedersen, more recently adding John Adam, Nadia Townsend, and Ryan O’Kane. But since its launch more police procedurals have joined the TV landscape including TEN’s Rush and Nine’s COPS L.A.C. In addition Nine now has its emergency drama Rescue Special Ops. The net result is that TV audiences are showing fatigue with the policing genre.

Unlike its competitors, City Homicide‘s premise has also seen it boxed in by its whodunnit premise, denied the opportunity to explore wider policing issues. This season it began to add more personal stories for its key characters as a way to compensate.

Meanwhile Seven has been expanding its drama slate, including the development of Winners and Losers under producer Maryanne Carroll, who left City Homicide to helm the new series which will air in 2011. The series had changed hands to new producer Richard Jasek this year.

The loss of City Homicide is significant, and follows the end of All Saints last year.

While Seven can boast an embarrassment of local drama riches with Packed to the Rafters, Home and Away and Winners and Losers, City Homicide was still able to deliver in stories and performances.

Seven is yet to respond to enquiries from TV Tonight.

UPDATE: Seven has now confirmed that principal photography on Series Four will wrap on November 12th.

A decision on the production of Series Five will be made in the new year.

Director of Programming and Production, Tim Worner said: “City Homicide is a gripping drama that has continued to improve and develop through each of its 84 episodes.

“In the days of old, its renewal would have been a no brainer.”

City Homicide will remain in Channel Seven’s prime time schedule until the end of the current ratings period with a six part mini series titled “No Greater Honour” guest starring Claire Van Der Boom, Marcus Graham, John Howard, and Graeme Blundell to air in 2011.

“But in this multi channel environment these decisions are not as clear cut as they once were.”

68 Comments »

  1. Joyce July 10, 2011 at 2:58 pm -

    I love City Homicide
    I cant believe channel 7 axed the show
    It is like the best cop show ever

  2. Julie April 7, 2011 at 11:01 am -

    Haven’t missed an episode of this great Australian TV show since it started. It should never be cancelled. Over the years so many good Australian shows have been cancelled in replacement of reality TV garbage and American shows. Why???

  3. Gail Davies April 3, 2011 at 2:51 pm -

    Absolutely do not understand why Channel 7 has axed City Homicide. Has to be in the top 10 ever of Australian TV shows.This last season has been the best yet. All those great actors out of a job! Move it to another time slot instead of axing it altogether. I am soooooooooooo annoyed. Would rather watch good “Home grown” television than most of eveything else. Channel 7 you suck #@!?/*&!!

  4. Mark Rugendyke March 31, 2011 at 9:25 pm -

    Don’t tell me City Homicide is dead!

    Whodunnit?

  5. debra March 31, 2011 at 2:40 pm -

    I was really sorry to hear that you have axed another really good show with soo much great local talent, first all saints now city homicide i do not find that channel seven has much in entertainment these days -, home and away, winners and losers, criminal minds and i would say that that is about it,winners and losers seems pretty good only time will tell, but that is it for me i find your station rather boring barr those three shows you really need to pick up your game channel seven.

  6. Kylie Plousi March 31, 2011 at 2:45 am -

    i am very upset i loved the show, and i am not happy that channel 7 axed all saints and now my city homicide channel 7 you are becoming a very disappointed with the axing of the shows and changing of times and days, you never run on time always late, and i think you better work your shit out,

    I am becoming a person to watch less of channel seven bring city homicide back, a australia melbourne show and you throw it away Wake up for f—— sake

  7. Val March 23, 2011 at 9:52 am -

    I find it discusting my favourite Australian show has been axed. Channel 7 has no idea how many people hate all the boring cooking shows. My family stopped watching 7 a long time ago, the only show left was City Homicide. Nothing ever starts on time always 10-15 min late with drivel of reality crap. Very Dissapointed.

  8. Denise March 22, 2011 at 6:47 am -

    This is a great show. This show is more to life what police reallly do out in the real world. I know i am one. Don’t axe it

  9. harrypotter1994 March 10, 2011 at 2:14 am -

    No it shouldnt be axed. Great cast and expecially since ive seen this miniseries I cant wait for more.

    *And yes axing All Saints was stupid…they should of just got rid of the medical response unit if it costed that much. I miss cranky Frank

  10. Bodman December 20, 2010 at 3:52 pm -

    Very sad. Clearly the best of the cops genre that we have had for a long time. Even better than Rush. Not quite up with the great and gritty Wildside, but it is commercial TV!! Great characters and performances, although there have been a number of unexplored “personality issues” You can’t just chop and change timeslots. Calling off CH will be cutting down a show of immense potential – the best should be yet to come.

  11. Woody December 15, 2010 at 9:32 pm -

    I am sick of all the stupid shows like winners and losers, the biggest loser, x factor, enormous amounts of cooking shows – At least you could watch Homicide and see something different each week that is fictional. Its getting so there is nothing at all to watch on television and i am constantly looking at the tv guide and seeing nothing worth watching so its backup dvds and video shops. How do tvs do ratings because I find it hard to believe that people enjoy watching live tv shows with everyday people doing the most mundaning things.

  12. Steve Innes December 1, 2010 at 2:24 am -

    Why does any network continue to produce shows that will be cast, time and again, with the same handful of faces that we have long grown bored with. Formula casting is supposed to be employed when the cast you have and the material you have is solid and a proven performer. When you cast the same tried hacks again and again, combined with material and acting that can border on embarrassing, you are signing up for failure. I just cannot understand why the networks and the production companies have not worked that out.

  13. Aimee Eddie October 25, 2010 at 1:37 pm -

    I really like City Homicide and I really hope that Seven isn’t going to axe it because it is a great show.

  14. Secret Squïrrel October 24, 2010 at 1:30 pm -

    @Liz – Good news then. You’ll be able to take your TV down to Cash Converters and use the money to buy yourself something nice.

  15. Liz October 24, 2010 at 12:10 am -

    And there goes the last TV programme I watch now that The Bill has concluded its run….what a shame!

  16. Squareyes October 23, 2010 at 5:38 pm -

    I understand the producers have pitched new dramas to other networks and have confirmed City Homicide is dead!

  17. Haydn October 23, 2010 at 5:17 pm -

    The acting is excellent, storylines are good, characters are great.
    Why would you axe it? What a joke!
    Keep it going 7 it’s the only good Aussie cop drama left on tv.

  18. steve October 23, 2010 at 5:11 pm -

    Serves Seven right. The networks get all they deserve when they start switching round timeslots. Has no one told them ‘if it’s not broke, don’t fix it”

    The same thing happened with House. When it was on Wednesday night it used to get at least 1.5 million viewers, then 10 moved it to Sunday night which led to alot of the viewers switching to the ABC and staying there. Now House can barely get 700k viewers.

    The shame with CH is that if it doesn’t come back, there will be alot of Aussies out of work.

  19. catherine October 23, 2010 at 2:15 pm -

    No No ch7 its your fault. You stuffed it up by changing timeslots. You should have left it on monday nights. This season has been one of the best. Its the only good cop show on tv. Leave some aussie drama on.

    Tim Worner I still havent forgiven you for axing All Saints. Dont be an idiot by axing CH. Listen to the viewers. Put it back Monday nights! That’s where it rated you fool.

  20. J Bar October 23, 2010 at 12:26 pm -

    It’s a quality show taht deserves to keep going. They made a big mistake axing All Saints. They shouldn’t make the same mistake again.

  21. Bazza October 23, 2010 at 12:02 pm -

    And what will we get in it’s place? More mind-numbing reality TV?

    They have three channels running rubbish and repeats, why can’t we make space for one decent Australian drama? This show is maturing and improving, plus I’m not really seeing much better programming coming from elsewhere. To cancel it now would be sheer stupidity.

    The general impression that it’s on the wrong night in the wrong timeslot is bang on the mark too. Instead of trying to steal market share from their competitors (and mostly failing) 7 would be much better served if they claimed another night and time for the show, one that’s currently unloved, then get it buried like a tick then let the others try to steal it away.

  22. ducko October 23, 2010 at 11:44 am -

    It’s had a good run but it’s time for it to go. It’s always sad, but we’ll get over it. I just hope Seven replaces it with a new non-crime drama.

  23. alvar October 23, 2010 at 11:18 am -

    what about trialling that 6-part miniseries on 7TWO next year. If that works perhaps 7TWO could be the new home for City Homicide. With 900,000, the show definately does have a loyal audience and the quality of the show is obviously great.

  24. Strike Me Pink October 23, 2010 at 11:01 am -

    God Ch 7 are gutless. Will they ever just say a show’s being axed? Tim Worner always says A. We’re bringing it back later, (and then they never do) or B. We’ll make a decision on its future at a later date. Either way it means its cactus, kaput, here’s ya hat what’s ya hurry!

  25. Ruth October 23, 2010 at 8:04 am -

    No No No, CH has been great this season with new actors and interesting story lines. It’s by far the best local Cop Show with Rush coming second.

    IMHO Ch 7 ruins its own shows by never starting on time…….

  26. Adam October 23, 2010 at 8:01 am -

    So true what Noni said about it losing numbers due to it moving timeslots.

    Look at Packed to the Rafters for example. It continues to rate incredibly well because it has been on at the same timeslot for years.

  27. Russell October 23, 2010 at 6:00 am -

    City Homicide has averages only 332,000 viewers in 25-54 over the last 4 telecasts, which is the demo Seven targets and sells advertising to.

    That is a third of the 950,000 or so Rafters gets in 25-54. And way under even home and away, offspring, rush, sea patrol etc. Th only Aussie drama
    That gets worse 25-54 numbers is Cops LAC.

    If Seven can get 950,000 with Packed, and CH was pulling 332,009 (just a third) that prob figure they can commission a new drama that will
    Do a lot better numbers than CH

  28. Natasha October 23, 2010 at 4:49 am -

    I’ve really liked the episodes of City Homicide that I have seen, but to be honest, if it does get axed, it’d give a newer perhaps fresher show a chance. There’s too many cop shows on Aussie T.V. at the moment.

  29. Lyn October 23, 2010 at 12:07 am -

    This is one aussie cop show that I hope stays around.
    It has good actors, scripts!
    They need to keep this one.
    Get rid of the others … like Cops LAC … which is rubbish!!!

  30. Ashleigh October 22, 2010 at 11:41 pm -

    Channel 7 need to have a certain amount of Aussie stuff to be aired each week as a rule. City Homicide is a fantastic show. Why didn’t they just leave it in the Monday 8.30pm position. Why do they always have to mess with a good thing?!

    God, they drive me up the wall!!

    And Rafters is running out of storylines now. I watched it the other night and was shocked at how bad it had actually gotten.

    CH now has a new producer and this season has been incredible. By adding the personal lives of the detctives into it; it has added a new dimension and (as the ratings show, by increasing every week!!) they are adding a new genre of viewers.

    If Channel 7 axes CH and doesn’t give the new producers a chance I will be livid.

    We need to support Aussie drama and stop buying this imported s**t.

  31. pepe October 22, 2010 at 10:32 pm -

    CH lost impact and viewers when Georgie Parker came on board… It will Not be axed… Just industry bulls&*t…. Wait for a revamp..

  32. Dan October 22, 2010 at 10:17 pm -

    I like his last comment – well get rid of your multichannels then. :)

  33. tomothy October 22, 2010 at 9:59 pm -

    I’ve been dissapointed with this season, while still a good show with a quality cast, the stories have been less interesting. The same goes with Rush. These are two shows I have watched from the start, but now I have a few of each unwatched on the PVR while it sits on a series link.

  34. Brent October 22, 2010 at 9:42 pm -

    So City Homicide hasn’t got the axe… why did 3AW report this?

  35. wilmawalrus October 22, 2010 at 9:05 pm -

    I hope it’s not true – CH is a quality show, with good writing and top performances. There is no reason, in this day and age of multi-channelling, to let this show go. Fingers crossed it survives this scaremongering!

  36. stevie g October 22, 2010 at 7:50 pm -

    Note to seven. I would have watched City Homicide this season, but the thing was, with it starting at 8.40 I knew it wouldn’t finish in time for me to change change channels and watch Tara at 9.30. So I didn’t bother. The tv landscape you created makes it all too hard.

  37. owl October 22, 2010 at 7:32 pm -

    If this is true, it’s a bit sad because I always felt it was one of the better local shows. I think the audience exhaustion with cop shows is not only Australia – look at all the Law & Order, NCIS, etc coming from the US. The Bill has just suffered the same fate, and I think that’s what is the significant trend. People are tired of all them all. Another problem for Oz shows is that it’s hard to compete with the “crime waves” coming out of the US – we just don’t have as many guns (thank goodness) – so our shows are either really stupidly unrealistic (Rush) or appear mundane by comparison.

  38. Allie October 22, 2010 at 7:28 pm -

    I predict the axeman will take his blade to Cops LAC next, followed closely by Rescue Special Ops.

  39. Son October 22, 2010 at 7:20 pm -

    how about the networks take that axe to the heads of drama at 9 and 10, an even 2. OMG! How do they keep their jobs. That article in the GG was right. All the important jobs have gone to all the wrong people.

  40. gary October 22, 2010 at 7:16 pm -

    Would rather watch repeats of the original and best Homicide

  41. Brent October 22, 2010 at 6:42 pm -

    City Homicide was the best performing cope show on our screens and it’s now been axed…

    COPS LAC, Rush, and Special Ops will be all gone this time next year. There isnt much of a future for all 3 shows.

  42. johnjet October 22, 2010 at 6:36 pm -

    In TV Land I always thought anything rating over a 1million viewers was a good thing. So what is the bench mark rating number now?

  43. Andrew B October 22, 2010 at 6:26 pm -

    As someone who has watched the show from the beginning, it is nowhere near as good as it used to be. I used to always watch it on the night – either live or close to live, now it ends up being watched on the weekend sometime when there is nothing else on.

    Having said that though – City Homicide is still better than the others on offer.

  44. Alex October 22, 2010 at 6:25 pm -

    Funny how things change – when this premiered in 2007 and was doing 1.6 it seemed Seven had another Blue Heelers that would be with us for many many years. Four seasons is still not a bad effort though.

    Rafters, Underbelly and Sea Patrol are the only Aussie dramas currently still running that haven’t had their ratings go ever below a million viewers.

  45. Rutzie October 22, 2010 at 6:21 pm -

    I can honestly say I’ve never missed an episode of City Homicide and am disappointed it will not be renewed. Let’s hope viewers get behind it over the coming weeks and show Seven they are making the wrong decision.

  46. Craig October 22, 2010 at 6:21 pm -

    It is a surprise, CH is now getting double the ratings of Cops LAC, when will Nine put that show out of it’s misery.

  47. mackeral October 22, 2010 at 6:16 pm -

    Good riddance to boring mundane rubbish. Now all they have to do is officially axe Rush and create some good new dramas like Inside Out.

  48. Harry October 22, 2010 at 6:10 pm -

    Never liked CH. So long as Rush doesnt get axed, Im happy.

  49. Michelle October 22, 2010 at 6:04 pm -

    Sign this petition if you don’t want Channel 7 to axe City Homicide
    ipetitions.com/petition/dont_axe_city_homicide/

  50. Joe October 22, 2010 at 6:03 pm -

    The next swing of the axe will be channel tens Rush

  51. Trix October 22, 2010 at 5:58 pm -

    Commiserations if anyone here’s affected by the axing. It’s always sad to see a drama get the chop, particularly when there’s far worse fare being renewed. But I’m betting there’s been a collective sigh of relief around the offices of RSO and Rush this afternoon.

  52. Son October 22, 2010 at 5:51 pm -

    I don’t agree that TV audiences are showing fatigue with the policing genre. They’re showing fatigue with awful television dramas. CH isn’t included in that, but it seemed to hit the same note and it took itself so very seriously. It’s become such an effort to sit through.

  53. RichoTB October 22, 2010 at 5:44 pm -

    With CH axed and Cops Lack pulling such atrocious numbers, I expect Rush will be renewed for next year…unless Ten decide to axe it anyway.

    If it did, that’d be pretty awesome IMO. No more police procedural crap, and a chance to see some original, creative ideas. Just don’t replace it with another medical/cop show

  54. koverstreet October 22, 2010 at 5:32 pm -

    While i don’t think it’s as good as Sea Patrol,Rescue SO or Cops LAC (sadly also looking like being axed) it’s ok without being anything special. Some good actors but the plots were always kind of ordinary.

    Ah well as long as we still have Rescue SO and Sea Patrol I’m happy.

  55. philm October 22, 2010 at 5:17 pm -

    I’ve said it before. I think 2011 on & is going to look very different. They seem to have axed a lot of factual fluff, City Homicide etc.

    Wouldn’t be surprised if they have another drama in the works for the second half of 2011. But a shame to see it go, has really hit its stride this year once again.

  56. Butters October 22, 2010 at 5:04 pm -

    Aw, dammit. I love CH.

  57. Woody October 22, 2010 at 4:49 pm -

    Come on 9 put LAC out it’s (or our) misery

  58. David Knox October 22, 2010 at 4:44 pm -

    Ronnie: Yes non-renewal and axings are semantically two different things but to audiences, and presumably cast and crew, it’s the same end result.

  59. Tim October 22, 2010 at 4:42 pm -

    Hopefully this is just incorrect scuttlebutt.

  60. Jerome October 22, 2010 at 4:33 pm -

    if this is true it would sure send a message to the other networks. while 7’s dramas are all ending on top while rating well, other network dramas seem to have set their bar very low with 700k and 800k shows getting renal after renual.

  61. Ronnie October 22, 2010 at 4:23 pm -

    As John Holmes conceded at the recent Film Vic gabfest Underbelly changed everything. The writing on CH always felt a bit yesterday and they didn’t seem able take the show into new territory. It’s not really axed – it’s just not renewed, which comes as no surprise to anyone. Four long seasons is a pretty good innings for any Aussie drama these days.

  62. JB October 22, 2010 at 4:23 pm -

    Seven you suck. City Homicide is my favourite Aussie tv show and is also one of the best Aussie shows on tv. It is a quality show with a quality cast. Seven killed it when they switched days. Belongs Sunday or Monday nights. Move it back to it’s original timeslot. Don’t axe it. This season has been just as good as the previous ones.

  63. Andrew October 22, 2010 at 4:21 pm -

    they shouldn’t have axed All Saints. I miss Von!

  64. Guy October 22, 2010 at 4:20 pm -

    If its true then thats sad because this is the best Aussie Cop show on the box. The ratings have improved over these past weeks which i think is due to the stability of the show being in the same slot but also because they scheduled The Force and Border Security before it, making it a better flow.

    So we lose All Saints last year….still bitter about that….and now City Homicide. Poor form Seven

  65. snapper jack October 22, 2010 at 4:17 pm -

    I reckon Noni’s clipboard should be nominated for a gold logie. just hope this isnt the start of axing local content for cheaper imported rubbish

  66. Lewis October 22, 2010 at 4:11 pm -

    I’m stunned. This season of City Homicide has been really good. The ratings are picking up too. They’ve grown more story arcs, dealt with a wide range of issues, not just police related, but social issues too. It’s so much better than any other police drama on TV (Cops LAC is the worst. I didn’t think there could be a worse show than The Strip but Nine proved me wrong). Rescue Special Ops is crap as well.

    Terrible decision.

  67. Kuttsywood October 22, 2010 at 4:11 pm -

    Seven can’t rely on Rafters forever, they better hope Winners or Losers is a success next year, otherwise their spend on Australian drama may not pay dividends in years to come.

  68. Brad October 22, 2010 at 4:04 pm -

    If true, this is sad. CH was much more realistic than the ridiculous action rubbish of Rush and LAC.

    Ch 7 moved CH around too much. It belonged on Monday. The programmers can take the blame for this one.

    They better hope Winners and Losers works though to me it sounds a bit soft in an “Offspring kind of way” and will probably have the same issues attracting a wide demographic.

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