Are viewers sending TV programmers a message that they are just not getting?
For the past two weeks ABC dramas Midsomer Murders and Vera have won their 8:30 timeslots on Sundays, outranking both Sunday Night and 60 Minutes.
It begs the question: are viewers wanting to sink their teeth into a drama at 8:30 when Seven and Nine are force-feeding them current affairs? It’s the traditional movie timeslot to chill out before the working week begins.
After all we are traditionally used to current affairs in an earlier slot on Sundays, with 60 Minutes having decades of 7:30 triumphs.
But now greedy reality shows, testing our patience at 90 minutes have pushed those shows back to 8:30pm starts.
ABC wins suggest a significant chunk of the audience is looking for drama at 8:30, leaving the big two to divide their audience. How many more are being lost to Streaming?
But it’s not so simple, with TEN struggling with 24: Legacy bumped to 9:30 with Bull landing fourth in its timeslot. Brit dramas Death in Paradise and Broadchurch are also drawing good ABC crowds on the weekend.
TV historian Andrew Mercado told TV Tonight, “It’s very interesting that American dramas on free to air TV are sinking in the ratings at an alarming rate yet over on the ABC, British dramas are more than holding their own.
“They are already winning their timeslots on Fridays and Saturdays and now with the right British drama on Sunday, the ABC can win that too. This is because the ABC has consistency in their schedule and they don’t program drama as an afterthought off the backs of overblown reality formats.”