Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Curious Phenomenon - Tuesday 18 November 2008

Another Tuesday night of wall to wall Seven dominance. You know a night of TV is big when people you know start talking to you about it apropos of nothing!

So it was last night with All Saints lifting for the last episode with actor Mark Priestley who died shortly after the Olympics in an apparent suicide. This help to subdue the figure for Rush, ten’s strategy for a quick summer turnaround for the Melbourne based drama is a welcome move – getting it out of the path of Seven’s steamrolling Tuesdays.

At least Ten has the one show that can weather a Seven storm in NCIS, occasionally this show, a procedural laced with sarcasm feels like it’s straight out of the 80s, which makes sense as it’s from Don Bellisario, the creator of such 80’s highlights as Magnum PI, Airwolf and Quantum Leap and although he has long since left NCIS (over a dispute with series lead Mark Harmon) the tone of the show is unmistakeable.

In the US NCIS is proving to be indestructible with reruns outperforming other new series wherever they land and the series itself standing up against megahits like House and American Idol.

Here in Australia it has been Ten’s most solid import, while their other big draw House implodes NCIS goes against the toughest show of the week and shines.

This week we can also bear witness to that curious phenomenon of the 8pm episode of The Simpsons outrating the 7.30pm episode. Anecdotally this makes a lot of sense, viewing generally (but not always) peaks at 8.30pm because with people working later and commuting longer they are often not ready to watch TV until later in the night.

For Ten this has been a factor for years – they used to show Everybody Loves Raymond after Becker on Tuesday nights because Raymond could net the larger audience – amazingly it has never occurred to anyone at channel ten to post the New Simpsons episode at 8pm and see what happens!

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