1.33m as Assange telemovie puts TEN back in the mix

TEN’s telemovie on the early life of Julian Assange was the network’s best hit since MasterChef.

Underground pulled 1.33m viewers, won its timeslot, topped the demos and was trending at #1 on Twitter last night. The performance helped TEN to an impressive 23.3% share -its best numbers in months.

It was the best result for a TEN telemovie since Hawke in 2010, and showed that a good idea, well executed and promoted can still fire for the ailing network. It again demonstrates that TEN’s Drama department has been its bright spot in a difficult second half.

But it was Seven that won the night with Anh Does Vietnam surging to a huge 1.67m viewers as the night’s #1 show. It’s a great vote of confidence for multiculturalism in the same timeslot that usually screens the xenophobic Border Security. Seven would be smart to align Anh Do with more TV work, pronto.

Seven Network was 30.2% then Nine 24.8%, TEN 23.3%, ABC 18.5% and SBS 3.2%.

Seven’s coverage of Bathurst was also strong with an average of 1.25m for the race itself. Sunday Night (1.5m) and Seven News (1.41m) both won their timeslot. But there was a big switch when Killing Time began, as viewers fled to other shows. It dropped from 1.67m for Anh Does Vietnam to 730,000 for Killing Time -fourth in its slot. Strike Back was 349,000 / 278,000.

60 Minutes (1.25m) was best for Nine then Nine News (1.03m), but under the magic million were House Husbands (961,000) and Big Brother‘s eviction (941,000). The Mentalist was 572,000.

Aside from Underground on 1.33m, TEN’s other titles were Julian Assange: The Real Story (titled incorrectly at 711,000), Modern Family (636,000 / 434,000), TEN News (413,000), The Project (353,000) and The Simpsons (343,000).

Call the Midwife was second in its timeslot on 1.05m for ABC1 then ABC News (849,000), Great Southern Land (752,000), Agatha Christie’s Poirot (649,000) and Compass (306,000).

SBS ONE had a tough night with World News Australia on 209,000, Battle Castle (203,000) and The Gene Code on 128,000.

FIA Formula One on ONE topped multichannels with 265,000.

Sunday 7 October 2012.


  1. I love Anh Do ever since I saw him on “pictures of you”. I think of him and his sister every time I hear that song.

    Agree with Kats comments 100%. See what boat people can bring to this country!

  2. @alfagirl – You do realise the F1 was on at 4:30 live on One (for the first time this year…. nice to see it in HD!!!!)

    David – What were the rating for the F1 replay on Ten?

    Hopefully Ten will open their eyes and leave the F1 on One where it belongs next year!!!! or better still give the rights to Foxtel

  3. Ten need to quickly wake up and realise they have been targeting the wrong demographic, pumping out rubbish like The Shire and Being Lara Bingle. Their best ratings have come from dramas such as the Assange telemovie, Puberty Blues, Off Spring and Bikie Wars.

    The Assange telemovie was good. The special before it however, one very long music video. I wouldn’t have been surprised to see Hamish MacDonald break out dancing Gangnam Style

  4. I watched most of Underground as I had been looking forward to it, but I did not enjoy it at all. I found it poorly edited and written and it did not wind up holding my interest at all. I swtiched off before it finished.

  5. Underground – was great last night, just a shame it’s a one off. Being a Mac fan the first thing I did was check to see if they used the right models for the time 😆 Now lets hope Homeland can do just as good next week and score over the 1 million mark.

    Killing Time – maybe Seven should stop pretending it’s the first time it’s been on TV having aired last year on TV1 it’s not exactly new even if it’s new to FTA.

    House Husbands – is it loosing it’s shine dropping below the 1 million mark on a tough night?

  6. TasTVcameraman

    Congratulations to the crew and all at Channel Ten, It is good to see viewers watching locally made drama.

    I thought the two programmes back to back worked well, but I am still confused !

    Next week will be interesting with all four networks showing worthwhile drama, my tip is that House Husbands will lose a few viewers,

  7. I’m glad Underground did so well. I got to watch the end of the special and for once didn’t mind it ended late. That said I would of watched all of it after the telemovie. But watched Poirot instead. By the way love Great Southern Land.

  8. Great result for Ten with Underground and stunning result for Seven with Anh Do. I think part of the success of his program is down to the fact that Australians know him, find him funny, and have warmed to him enormously through his memoir. All power to him and I’d rather have positive cultural reinforcement over dog whistle xenophobia on my screens any day.

  9. Channel 10’s ratings were up nearly 1m on the repeat of NCIS they showed last week, so something had to give. Call the Midwife and House Husbands lost some viewers but it was always going to be impossible to launch a new show in that slot.

    Channel 7 bought Strike Back and Killing Time because Bones’ ratings were way down last season and they want to keep Downton Abbey and Castle in 2013. Killing Time and Strike back are basically being used as cannon fodder. It leaves Channel 7 with a problem though because they can’t afford to not compete on Sunday night for the remaining 8 weeks of the ratings season.

    Underground’s popularity at a film festival will have been because of interest in Assange and politics.

  10. Recorded Killing Time (I haven’t watched it yet though) to watch Underground. It was brilliant.
    Should watch 1st episode of Killing Time to see if its worth pursuing, because I will be watching the season premiere of Homeland on Ten on 8:30 Sunday!

  11. Like many here I have been critical of Ten’s programming of late, so I was pleased that ‘Underground – The Julian Assange Story’ rated well. I found the technical historical accuracy of the program was pretty spot on and the acting more than acceptable. Well done to Ten for showing this program.

  12. Congrats to TEN – this coming Sunday will be the real test for all 4 main broadcasters – 4 shows at 8.30 this family want to watch.

    Recorders with be working overtime…

    • Killing Time is well made, with David Wenham and Richard Cawthorne both fantastic. But it was a tough night and one has to look beyond the unappealing central character. May have to move to 9:30.

  13. These figures prove that House Husbands is not strong enough for Sunday night and will struggle for the rest of the year. The renewal was premature – and if it does proceed it will need to find a much softer weeknight slot like Wednesday or Thursday.

  14. We didn’t bother watching Underground it held no interest for us, we watched Killing Time instead which I thought was really good and will be watching again next week (and recording Homeland!).

  15. I have to agree with Qubec. I was looking forward to seeing “Underground” but was very disappointed. Half an hour into it I was thinking hurry up and finish I have an F1 race to watch. Then I thought OMG they showed this at an international film festival!!

  16. I wasn’t expecting much from “Underground” and thought I’d just watch the start of it, but it held my interest to the end. It was surprisingly good.

  17. Wow wow wow! Oct 7th was always going to land some punches and some where always going to miss.

    I am shocked by the failure of Killing Time…i watched it and thought it was excellent. It started slow and i reacon it lost alot of its lead in because it was boring in the first 10 minutes. It dropped in nearly 1 million from its lead in which was a massive fall. A real shame but its all over for it.

    Anh Does Vietnam was excellent and what a stunning result. Today at work people are saying how funny it was i gave this show no chance glad i got it completely wrong.

    Julian Assange: The Real Story was excellent and if it was on 9 like Packers War would have rated over 2 million. But Ten will take 1.2 million anyday of the week at the moment – shame its only a telemovie.

    I love House Husbands but started to feel the novelty wear off a little last night with its episode hope they start to find some rich story lines without going over the top and turning into neighbors.

  18. While it’s good to see Ten finally have a hit on their hands, I have to say if Underground is meant to be a good Australian telemovie, I weep for the industry. I found it dull and at times tedious, the lack of plot was glaring and it felt like Griffths and LaPagia were phoning it in. Here’s hoping they try harder during the inevitable cash cow sequel…

  19. The adverts for Killing Time did not make me want to watch it at all. It looked like another Underbelly with low-budget camerawork, dancing girls and dodgy acting.

    It will be interesting to see if Homeland is #1 in it’s slot next week, I’ll predict 1.2 million viewers for the premiere

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