Tuesday, April 13, 2010
I don't know why it's taken channel Nine a full two years to realise that big audiences don't hit the box until after Easter, with Daylight Savings over and the weather getting colder, people have more time to spend in front of the TV.
This post Easter spike in viewers has been the case for years, but still TV networks have insisted on trotting out the big shows in February for the fear of others gaining a first mover advantage.
This year was no different, for some shows - but for some locally made big guns there's been an uncharacteristic and welcome restraint. Nine has held back the launch of Underbelly for after Easter with maximum impact - a 2.2 million strong audience shows none of the erosion suffered by other shows since last year.
Furthermore 2 months head start did nothing for the Good Wife, which (as the new kid in town) has the most fickle audience in Underbelly's (considerable) wake. Less fickle are the viewers of Bones who gave the show a healthy (and respectable) number against Nine's behometh.
Nine has also saved Sea Patrol and the revived Hey Hey it's Saturday for the post easter season, while Seven has a new series of Australia's Got Talent, it's big Miniseries "The Pacific" and is still holding back new seasons of City Homicide and Packed to the Rafters.
Ten hasn't changed a damn thing about their strategy and so far they are suffering because of it. Still everyone expects the sophomore season of Masterchef to do the business but from where I stand with their early evening in tatters, and post 9.30 slots filled with underperforming US shows - Masterchef is looking a lot like Big Brother did back in the day - an insanely popular yet solitary asset that Ten pours all their resources into at the expense of a well rounded schedule.
Incidentally EPIC FAIL of the night goes to House, Ten might wanna think about scheduling reruns in this slot for the next 11 weeks until Underbelly goes away, cuz at 568,000 viewers - they ain't competing.