Viewers getting a raw deal in lead-up to the Olympics

Not into dashboard cams, bad drivers, clip shows and movie reruns? You're not alone.


Take a look at the TV schedules or look at the ratings and it’s bleedingly obvious… viewers are getting a raw deal with a lack of compelling content while we all wait patiently for the Olympic Games.

The Games begin on August 6th but since the end of The Voice and House Rules, Nine and Seven have offered little by way of premium entertainment content.

Sure there are local dramas Love Child and Winners and Losers, but unless one is into observational shows or clip shows it’s slim pickings lately.

Schedules are drawing upon movie replays, dashboard cams and bad drivers, clips and commercials, or shows that were once shuffled off to multichannels.

No wonder TEN has lifted. MasterChef is rating every night. It has also returned Offspring and launched The Great Australian Spelling Bee (albeit to modest ratings). TEN will also roll straight into The Bachelor and new US comedy Life in Pieces (although the timeslot is a bit unexpected). Gogglebox begins filming in the next two weeks.

ABC has Barracuda, Mad as Hell, Gruen while SBS will screen all 4 eps of Roots before the starter gun in Rio.

TV commentator Andrew Mercado told TV Tonight, “We do seem to be in a lull at the moment and if it’s due to Free to Air networks playing silly games, when will they ever learn?

“Don’t they realise it is 2016 and viewers now have many other choices with Foxtel and streaming services galore?”

The good news is there’s plenty coming after the Games: The Secret Daughter, 800 Words, Hyde + Seek, The Block, The X Factor, Survivor, The Bachelorette, House Husbands, Married at First Sight, House of Bond, Zumbo’s Just Desserts, Brock, The Wrong Girl, Deep Water, The Code, Upper Middle Bogan, Please Like Me, Who Do You Think You Are?, and more.

17 Responses

  1. Seven knows it has the year tied up so it can afford to take its foot off the pedal. The interesting thing is that Nine could have pushed through a month of strong programming while Seven is treading water, to pick up precious annual share, but has not. Granted it’s not ideal once the Games begin, but it will show when numbers are tallied at year’s end.

    1. What I don’t get is, Nine had so many “flops” this year rather than bump them around should’ve just pulled them and saved for first run during the Olympics.
      I don’t get it, go into lazy programs a month before olympics and then 3 weeks during? Not that I watch the FTA much (at least not live), but other people do and I reckon they are getting a raw deal, because now after the olympics there is going to be some saturation of new programs that some will unnecessarily fail whereas if they’d started before the olympics there at least would be some sort of following.
      What do I know though?

  2. This year already has been a record low at our house for FTA viewing and even worse now – in the past weeks, its only the news, Mchef and HYBPA being watched from FTA – nothing else. Even Foxtel is close to gone with our package now at a record low for us and hardly anything fast tracked other than shows like GoT, Walking Dead, etc we don’t watch anyway. Thank goodness we have unlimited internet now as Stan and Netflix are getting serious workouts now accounting for most of our screen time.

    I don’t get why FTA does this – any normal business would not last long providing a lower service than usual leading up to or during the Olympics. In my view I’d be doing the exact opposite – hitting hard with premium programming and competing.

    Its almost like Seven and Nine have an agreement with each other behind the scenes as neither program against each other’s “major events” (like…

  3. It’s great – I’ve been able to finally watch 5 seasons of The Walking Dead on Foxtel Anytime. And if channel 7 isn’t HD for the Olympics I’ll find another boxset to binge on.

    1. You bet !

      Almost like the Chrissy holiday wasteland at the moment.
      Ah well, a good chance to catch up on old Rage “Guest Programmers of interest” episodes that have been accumulating on my PVR over the last year or so…

  4. Agree, it is appalling!! I’m a bit lost at the moment, I’ve had all of my streaming cut off thanks to technical issues (thanks Telstra and TPG), so I’ve been stuck with FTA (and realising how much I rely on my streaming!!). Every night I sit there with the online guide, disappointed. I’m not into Masterchef. So I’m mainly watching Eleven repeats of sitcoms. Thank god for Wednesday ABC offerings and Offspring (and recording to set top box so that takes up a little more viewing time), and DVDs. Bring on Tuesday when I will hopefully get my internet back…

  5. Frankly, the content on both Seven and Nine has been pretty ordinary this year, but it’s absolutely abysmal right now. And yet there are people who will steadfastly continue to watch either of them because that’s all they watch.

    1. Agreed seven is really scraping the bottom of the barrel with these LOL shows. Next week I saw advertised that it’s Christmas makes you LOL. Seriously?? It’s not even close to Christmas. Who would possibly want to watch that? It’s such lazy programming and this is in primetime during the ratings season.

  6. Thank you for this David.

    Channel 7 is the worse across all channels. They may as well put together a bunch of YouTube clips of animals and humans sleeping call it “Watch Animals and Humans Sleep LOL”.

  7. I agree, most of my work colleagues and friends use streaming services. Makes me wonder if 7&9 know the stories of Kodak and Nokia? Both of them failed to move with the times!

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