Comedy jitters on ABC1

By David Knox on March 8, 2012 / Filed Under News 28

ABC had another soft Wednesday night, with Adam Hills in Gordon Street Tonight its only show over 500,000 viewers after 8pm.

The comedy line-up is in big trouble with viewers overlooking Woodley (331,000) and rejecting Outland in droves. The latter was just 168,000 viewers, less than At The Movies (235,000) and Lateline (182,000) -even Kitchen Cabinet (195,000) was higher on ABC2 in the same slot. Woodley, which is a charming piece of comedy, hasn’t hit the family audiences ABC wanted on Wednesday while Outland may have found a better home on ABC2. With one more week to go of the latter, there’s no point changing the schedule now.

Best for ABC1 was ABC News on 1.01m but it dropped to 572,000 for 7:30.

Seven again won the night with My Kitchen Rules on 1.72m and Seven News (1.16m), then Today Tonight (1.04m), Please Marry My Boy (1.01m), Home and Away (903,000).

Nine News (1.1m) topped Nine’s evening followed by A Current Affair (879,000), The Big Bang Theory (788,000 / 772,000 / 736,000). Sherlock Holmes movie was 567,000.

The Biggest Loser (849,000) held for TEN then TEN News (643,000), The Good Wife (555,000), The Project (456,000), and an NCIS rpt on 296,000.

On SBS ONE it was Arctic with Bruce Parry (267,000), Empire (253,000), and Luke Gamble’s Vet Adventures (185,000).

American Pickers on 7mate topped the night with 292,000.

Sunrise: 436,000
Today: 340,000
ABC News Breakfast: 45,000 / 21,000
Breakfast: 40,000

Wednesday 7 March 2012

28 Comments »

  1. Agent 86 March 9, 2012 at 11:23 am -

    I’m growing to really enjoy Outland. The first episode was pretty disappointing, but the series has definitely consistently improved with each subsequent episode. I’d happily tune in for a second series, although that seems very unlikely.

  2. Lisa March 9, 2012 at 10:59 am -

    I’m heartbroken that people aren’t watching Woodley. I find it laugh out loud funny, adorable and entertaining. I think it’s one of the classiest and original yet accessible comedies made on Australian TV. But seeing how many above disagree and the ratings, I’m flummoxed and dismayed. I could tell Outland would not be for everyone (but then I loved & thought Big Bang Theory was pretty damn niche and it has become hugely mainstream). And Outland is not perfect, but it is original with interesting characters and ideas and I’m loving the set design of each episode despite having obviously been made with a tiny budget. Episode 4 was an impresively stunning work of comedy / horror spoof. Surely both of these shows have more value than bloody breath testing shows!!! Why is everyone so quick to slam perfectly good comedies that are simply not to their own taste?

  3. monk March 9, 2012 at 10:10 am -

    @eeffdee

    I don’t have to know the history of comedy to know that what woodley is trying to do is comedy. He just isn’t funny. Yeah it was funny when Rowan Atkinson or Buster Keaton did it. Woodley just can’t pull it off. Until the enteratinment idustry stops and takes a good hard look at theproduct they are putting out. Instead of blaming the “audience intelligence” for their failures. Australia will continue the long line up of comedy/sitcom failures.

  4. db March 9, 2012 at 9:41 am -

    Outland is my favourite Aussie show at the moment. I’m really hoping that there will be more to come.

  5. PJF March 9, 2012 at 12:01 am -

    I haven;t watched Woodley, & no more than 5 minutes of Outland…
    But then I haven;t watched any of the top 5 rating shows for months, either.
    Should I fear being deported?? :-)

  6. effdee March 8, 2012 at 11:54 pm -

    Woodley is comic genius, congrats to Frank for this.

    However it’s not what the Aussie TV viewing public are used to, or have enough knowledge of comic history to appreciate fully.

    So sad the viewers don’t get it.

  7. Honkster March 8, 2012 at 8:42 pm -

    Amazing, though, to see the drop off from the numbers they were doing with, say, Hamster Wheel or At home with Julia. (both not far off a million, compared with 168K for Outland in same slot).

    Message? People like daring. When are those shows back?

  8. hornet March 8, 2012 at 7:48 pm -

    I gave up Woodley, it could have been better.
    Outland is funny, its better each episode.
    I know the guy (John Richards) wrote the series.
    Adam Hill is brillant.
    I think the trouble with Aussie TV, people find things like comfortable, nice and boring.
    Channel 10 , need new approach to programming.
    Also I agree too many repeats of good show have
    killed them off, there are show we don’t get to see
    because fill up with endless repeats of the same shows every night.

  9. John Jackson March 8, 2012 at 6:42 pm -

    Yeah.. I’m not fully sure what to make of Woodley. I was looking forward to it, but it hasn’t really grabbed me in the way that I hoped it would. ‘the adventures of lano and Woodley’ was a great series, and one I have on DVD, but im not so sure Woodley will be going down as one of my fave shows when the series ends.

  10. OzJay March 8, 2012 at 5:54 pm -

    I hope there is someone at the ABC with enough guts to stick with Outland and Woodley. In stark contrast to anything offered up by ABC drama lately, both comedies are promising.

    Outland has had a few shaky moments, but episodes two and three were pretty consistently funny. And Woodley has the potential to develop into a cult family favourite along Mr Bean lines. Both are more fun than Angry Boys, which (given all the support Chris Lilley enjoyed) should have been way better.

  11. cglenn1988 March 8, 2012 at 5:27 pm -

    Enjoyed Outland and Woodley last night on ABC1. Pity they are not doing too good. IMO Woodley was funnier last night compared to last week.

    Good to see 10 get a decent share. Biggest Loser and TBYG are still fun to watch. ood ife deserves better. I did not bother with 7 at all and only watched the news on 9. 9 need to focus less on Big Bang repeats and 7 needs more quality shows.

  12. Maev....Sydney March 8, 2012 at 5:04 pm -

    I am enjoying Kitchen Cabinet….
    Gone off MKR and Please Marry My Boy…
    I will be watchin SBS in primetime tonight.

  13. napdav March 8, 2012 at 4:53 pm -

    I hate to sound like a broken record, but Oz TV is some of the most predictably bland and banal TV in the Western world. Nothing slightly left-of-centre or offbeat or genre (boy, Outland had all 3 against it!) seems to play – the exception being Wilfred.

    So we’re doomed to cooking shows, ‘Rafters’ so-called drama, this horrid thing called ‘Tricky Business’ coming from Nine and all the other woeful (usually small-time crime) stuff. We used to be a great TV production nation – alas no more.

  14. Bogues March 8, 2012 at 4:52 pm -

    What are Outland’s figures for ABC2 on Thursday? I watch it at that time, and watch AHiGST either Friday Night (ABC1) or Saturday evening (ABC2).

    I agree that Outland definitely should have been shown on ABC2. It is a great series, but a poor fit for ABC1’s Wednesday nights.

  15. jen March 8, 2012 at 4:27 pm -

    Outland is such a wonderful show

  16. Jennome March 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm -

    I was sooo looking forward to Woodley, and was sooo disappointed that we didn’t find it very funny at all. We didn’t even bother with the second episode. Lano and Woodley were part of the re-hash TEN did of old Comedy Festivals the other night, and the routine was hilarious. And it was mainly Woodley. So what happened?

    As for The Good Wife – I persist because I love it, but scheduling it for 9.10 (and it’s always later) is just ridiculous. The preceding program is Talkin’ About Your Generation, scheduled run for 70 minutes. Who makes a 70-minute show (incl commercials)???? Too long for that sort of show.

    Why does bottom-rating TEN persist with these strange timeslots. Sheer stupidity on their part.

  17. OnePotChef March 8, 2012 at 3:20 pm -

    I’m very disappointed that Outland hasn’t managed to get a bigger audience. It’s one of the funniest and most unique comedies to hit Aussie TV is a long time.

    I guess it being a bit of a niche category comedy has turned some viewers off – but I really hope there is another series. I have really really enjoyed this series.

  18. tomothyd March 8, 2012 at 2:16 pm -

    Move Woodley to a 6pm Saturday slot or two ABC2 on a Thursday. It’s not funny. I gave it a second chance with episode two, but I was not amused. I was a huge Lano and Woodley fan, but feel let down by this independant series. I was expecting so much more from this, and was waiting so long for ABC1 to put it to air.

  19. Shelley March 8, 2012 at 2:05 pm -

    If Woodley gets a second series, my advice would be to tighten it up a little and it would be funnier – some of the gags just drag on (like last night’s drunken golf sequence) just a little longer than is needed. I like it, but not as much as I wish I did.

  20. Pete March 8, 2012 at 1:37 pm -

    @bh

    I think ABC put Woodley in a perfect family friendly slot – Wednesdays at 8.00pm – it was also their strongest night for the past few years so the programmers would have assumed they had a ready made audience who were used to turning to ABC on Wednesdays.

    Unfortunately, you also need the product and Woodley is good without being great and Outland is ABC2 fodder at best.

  21. Secret Squirrel March 8, 2012 at 1:30 pm -

    Outland is def ABC2 material and I don’t find Woodley (the program) to be funny at all. I think most of us are waiting for Gruen to return.

  22. bh March 8, 2012 at 1:12 pm -

    Woodley should be in a more family-friendly slot. It’s not a Wednesday night show. This is poor programming strangling good program making.

  23. Craig March 8, 2012 at 1:00 pm -

    Maybe the fact TGW was not fast tracked late last year is now playing against TEN?

    Woodley is funny, but good thing he’s on ABC and probably not likely to be shifted, how long is the series?

  24. Tony Bee March 8, 2012 at 12:50 pm -

    It’s such a shame Woodley isn’t funnier.

  25. Kirk March 8, 2012 at 12:21 pm -

    Such a shame as I’ve been enjoying Outland, but it is a niche comedy that a lot of people wouldn’t get. Hope theres a second series.

  26. Nick March 8, 2012 at 12:09 pm -

    7:30 is where the rot starts. Needs an overhaul, and by that I mean bring back Kerry.

  27. Jason D. March 8, 2012 at 11:28 am -

    I think that the notion among the ABC is that because it’s not a commercial network, they can make productions for niche audiences, or cater to niche audiences. Which is very good and fine in other timeslots or other multi-channels (ABC2). But in primetime they should go with what appeals to the populous. Which is why Adam Hills IGST, Gruen Transfer etc. work in their timeslots. The ABC line-up is often inconsistent to the point where people will change channels for half-an-hour rather than put up with something they really don’t find appealing just because the ABC wants you to see it.

  28. MuchoTB March 8, 2012 at 11:25 am -

    The Good Wife is now getting exactly half of what it was two seasons ago thanks to three timeslot changes in the past two years (Sunday 8:30, Thursday 8:30, now Wednesday at the weird ass time of 9pm).

    Ten do this with every show they have, H50, Glee, even NCIS has dropped 500k from what it was pulling just a few years ago. Endless repeats and timeslot changes = a drop in viewers

    So much for Warburton turning the network around, I give it two-three years before anything substantial changes

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