HD Ratings: Dismaying End for NZ Drama

Local HD drama Nothing Trivial ended its low-rating run sharply down on last year’s season finale.

In 2012, on the back of NZ’s Got Talent’s semi-final, it won the 8.30 hour with 11.3% its target audience, adults 25-54, and 7.4% – 10.9% of the other key demographics (adults 18-39, 18-49, household shoppers with kids).

But with a much weaker lead-in, this year’s season and series finale averaged only 5.6% of adults 25-54 and 3.5% – 8.2% of the other key demos.

At least that was higher than the season premiere, which drew only 3.2% – 5.3% and even lost to Prime’s Under the Dome.

With numbers like these, it’s no wonder the network decided not to go another round, a cancellation TV critic Jane Clifton called “dismaying” in The Dominion Post.

“This has been possibly the most intensively charming series about 30-something couples since Cold Feet way back in the 1990s.

“It has been wonderfully grounded and warm-hearted, but well leavened with humour and a nicely tart undertone.”

Nothing Trivial’s woes capped a bad year for NZ drama’s fortunes, with TV3’s Harry and The Blue Rose wilting after promising starts and a revamped Go Girls going nowhere.

But its struggles allowed another local series, time slot rival 3rd Degree, to take off (as did having The Block NZ as a lead-in for a couple of months) – although TV3’s HD newsmag’s monthly debate specials, The Vote, have never been popular.

The last-ever edition of The Vote screened on Wednesday, to some of its lowest ratings: 2.9% – 4.0%.

With a turnout this low, it’s not surprising TV3 is sticking to its traditional newsmag format for next year’s 3rd Degree.

Meanwhile, TV One’s Life and Times of Temuera Morrison has been steadily improving, with this week’s instalment averaging 5.9% – 9.2% of the key demos, to seesaw with TV3’s Prison Families (4.9% – 6.8%), which was down on the previous week.

Nothing Trivial’s lead-out, Scandal, which next week ends its primetime run with a two-hour pseudo-season finale, averaged 0.8% – 3.1% against Tabatha Takes Over (5.2% – 10.0%) and Underbelly: Squizzy (1.9% – 3.2%).

In other HD rating news for the week:

  • The Walking Dead’s mid-season finale on Tuesday averaged only 3.3% – 5.7% on the back of The Mentalist’s 5.6% – 10.4%, which may not be enough to justify its primetime return next year (although it still out-rated TV3’s Hawaii Five-O and was competitive with TV One’s Death Row Dogs)
  • TV2’s SD premiere of Grown-Ups on Monday drew 2-3 times more viewers than TV3’s HD re-run of GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra
  • Similarly, TV3’s HD re-run of How to Lose Friends & Alienate People on Sunday reflected its title in the ratings, drawing half as many viewers as TV2’s HD premiere of Abduction and even losing to TV One’s new drama, A Mother’s Son, which averaged 2.5% – 4.7% on the back of NZ’s Got Talent’s two-hour semi-finals (7.1% – 9.7%)
  • TV2’s HD re-run of The Other End of the Line (5.8% – 8.5%) dominated Saturday’s ratings while TV One’s revival of the critically acclaimed Showtime (1.5% – 2.9%) was just as big a ratings disaster second time around
  • TV3’s Graham Norton Show/Kiwi comedy combo again dominated Friday but faced stronger competition than usual from TV2’s movie, Annapolis, while re-runs of The Middle and The Big Bang Theory were competitive with The X Factor USA
  • TV One’s Packed to the Rafters bowed out on Thursday with 3.3% – 8.1%, which was competitive with Embarrassing Bodies on TV2 but not the second hour of TV3’s X Factor, which averaged 7.1% – 8.6% from 7.30-9.30.
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