Some might call it a McLeod’s Daughters marathon.
Others might say it’s a dreadful treatment to a sentimental favourite.
However you look at it, Nine has scheduled four -that’s 4- back to back episodes of McLeod’s Daughters for Saturday January 17th.
Slated from 7:30pm to 11:30pm they are the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th episodes of the long-running Nine soap.
A week later Nine has episodes 21 and 22 planned to run at 10 and 11pm respectively. The 22nd episode includes a musical performance by the cast for the local town, bittersweetly titled “The Show Must Go On.”
That appears to have fallen on deaf ears in Nine programming. The show is “going on” but at these bizarre times on a Saturday in summer, it begs the question: how many of the show’s audience will be there to applaud the performance?
Nine programming hasn’t had an ideal start to the year, dropping Gossip Girl from view after only three episodes aired in December. That’s upset younger viewers. Now older viewers of McLeod’s are likely to be just as miffed by the treatment.
Another popular show, Temptation, will see its final episode shafted to 11:30am on Friday January 23rd.
Nine will get local quota points for running McLeod’s in prime time, via our points system which was designed to ensure local drama runs at a time where it can gain maximum viewers. But that was also put in place long before we were in a climate of shows being ripped off air ad infinitum.
The downside to this ruling is that networks refuse to run shows with drama points in ‘friendlier’ timeslots where viewers can watch them at a more leisured -and secure- timeslot. Networks are effectively locked into times where the shows can return points, and as a result many are bumped to summer, or simply burnt off in a ludicrous marathon.
Unlike enjoying a good DVD, it’s very difficult to get into a marathon mode with commercials.
Nine may well be moving McLeod’s out of the way to make way for movies or even a big, new shiny show like Superstars of Dance -but it’s a shame it hasn’t found a more sensible outcome, particularly to the fans who have stood by the show for eight long years.