ABC shows dominate on Sunday

Ratings: Unimpressed by commercial offerings, viewers turn to ABC News, Doc Martin & Doctor Blake Mysteries.

This has got to be a first…..

ABC shows won their timeslot on a Sunday night, with viewers clearly dissatisfied with commercial TV offerings.

ABC News, Doc Martin and The Doctor Blake Mysteries all won their slots -with all three ahead of anything offered by Nine or TEN all night.

Doc Martin was the night’s top show at 997,000 viewers ahead of The Wall (755,000) and Family Food Fight (525,000) both with a 7pm headstart. TEN’s Bull was far behind on just 286,000.

At 8:30pm The Doctor Blake Mysteries, infamously axed by ABC before a Seven lifeline, won its slot with 885,000 ahead of Sunday Night (656,000 from 8pm) and 60 Minutes (588,000). New US drama Wisdom of the Crowd with Jeremy Piven was lower still on 268,000 for TEN.

The outcome for Nine’s Family Food Fight will be a disappointment. After a sluggish week it was hoping a Sunday elimination episode might spike the numbers. After bumper months this could halt Nine’s tilt at Total People this year. That said, it’s even worse for TEN which is low on competitive content aside from a handful of remaining shows this week.

7mate’s Rugby League World Cup helped Seven’s overall share, topping multichannels at 241,000.

ABC’s primary channel ranked second for the night. Seven network won Sunday with 31.9% then Nine 26.5%, ABC 22.2%, TEN 12.9% and SBS 6.5%.

Seven News (916,000) was best for Seven then The Wall (755,000), Sunday Night (656,000) and Movie: Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (392,000).

Nine News (830,000) led for Nine then 60 Minutes (588,000), Family Food Fight (525,000) and Australian Crime Stories (333,000).

Doc Martin was #1 for ABC with 997,000 then The Doctor Blake Mysteries (885,000), ABC News (876,000) and Wallander (283,000). Classic Countdown drew 216,000.

The Sunday Project (363,000 / 239,000) was the best of a bad bunch for TEN. Bull (286,000), Wisdom of the Crowd (258,000), Family Feud (210,000), and NCIS: New Orleans (183,000) followed.

On SBS it was Secrets of the Pyramids (250,000), The Nineties (154,000) and SBS World News (145,000).

OzTAM Overnights: Sunday 5 November 2017.

17 Responses

  1. I am, and have been for sometime, totally fed up with what is going on with the ABC…both TV and radio…..I cannot wait for the end of the tenure of the person now in charge….and also a change of government (I have no particular political allegiance)…both seem hell bent on destroying our ABC….
    I just hope it can be brought back and saved…before it is too late… 🙁

  2. Moving Dr Blake to Seven may be very problematic. Commercial dramas run as short as 44 minutes per hour. ABC dramas run up to 57 minutes. It has a huge impact on how to develop a story if you want to wrap up the mystery in one night. The ABC ditching the show is only problematic if it had a repeated history of success with its other dramas. But it hasn’t and the ratings for its short form dramas have been pretty terrible and the shows themselves hardly ground breaking creatively. Not at all a bad idea to hold on to the ones that have a good audience.

  3. The ABC appears to be dead set on a course to alienate and lose their heartland viewership, while chasing an audience that is just not really there.
    Seems strange dumping dependable Dr Blake in a futile attempt to engage inner city hipsters in yet another moody, boring and ultimately unwatchable drama series.

    1. Because the ABC have it in their psyche that once something becomes too successful or ‘commercial’, they need to kill it off in favour of new untested productions. They have never understood in the same way as SBS do that successful productions bring eyeballs that will hopefully also sample your new stuff. But then again, the ABC aren’t meant to be interested in attracting ratings/eyeballs are they..

  4. There was a time when the ABC consistently rated a 17% share across the week and did well on Sundays with BBC dramas up against Hollywood movies on the Commercial networks. That was more than 15 years ago.

    1. I’ve enjoyed it too… I didn’t watch last night (I recorded it), but each subsequent episode has improved after an over zealous, shaky start… too bad it will be a one and done affair, but in an absolute tragic recent trend, I find myself actively not becoming attached to too many FTA shows (scripted and/or reality included) as a barrier for me to not be surprised by the way they treat shows…

  5. It’s the end of the ratings season until The Ashes kick in. Most of us are migrating to streaming services now, there is plenty to watch. There will be a decent pick up for the Melbourne Cup and the other racing days…but that’s it..

    1. You raise an interesting point about The Ashes, its ratings will be interesting this year, given all the CA fallout, international cricket declining and wash-outs also not helping recently. Nine have done a decent job at promoting though. Boxing Day the highlight. C’mon Aussies!

  6. ABC must be kicking themselves over their decision to dump The Doctor Blake Mysteries. I’ve only seen one episode a couple of years ago, it was set in a cinema. I quite enjoyed it, but never continued on. I’ll have to see if this is on Netflix, or arrives in HD commercial free on the new +7.

    1. The ABC cancelled Doctor Blake to fund a new drama targeting younger inner city viewers. Then saw an opportunity to move the final series to Sunday behind Doc Martin, which has worked out well. They did something similar with Miss Fisher and are now considering a Young Miss Fisher to try and cash in on the brand while getting younger viewers. Cancelling your top rating show, when it’s bringing in overseas sales is becoming a habit, one that must annoy the producers, crew and cast no end. They do pride themselves on not being commercial.

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