HD Ratings: Sunday Dramas Hit for a Six

It’s not surprising TVNZ 1’s elected to repeat the premiere of its Sunday night drama Liar on Saturday at 8.55.

This was always the plan, partly because programmers would have factored in the impact of Sky Sports’ international 20/20 cricket coverage, which proved to be formidable competition for the free-to-air channels from 8.00-9.00.

Combined with the popularity of Three’s House Rules, TVNZ 1’s new line-up was hit for a six from the outset.

Off the back of an unusually low-rating 1 News, Hyundai Country Calendar averaged only 3.5% of 25-54 year-olds — which was a veritable windfall compared to lead-out Yellowstone’s 2.3%, Liar’s 3.0% and Ride Upon the Storm’s 1.0%.

House Rules averaged 5.6% against CC and Yellowstone while Three’s repeat of the movie Identity Thief was also unbeatable, averaging 3.8% compared to 2.9% for TVNZ 2’s Sex Tape (off the back off 2.7% for 50 First Dates).

Even so, Liar maintained its 25-54 audience and built over the hour, to peak at 3.4%, whereas the English-Danish drama Ride Upon the Storm collapsed. It opened with 2.1% for its first quarter-hour and closed with 0.5%.

Despite the rise in popularity of streaming services that abound in subtitled TV dramas, free-to-air viewers clearly prefer formulaic to foreign.

TVNZ 1 did an outstanding job of promoting Ride Upon the Storm and shrewdly scheduled it to capitalise on what should have been a high-rating UK drama.

Even if Liar builds momentum after Saturday night’s re-run, it won’t be enough to rescue Storm or embolden TVNZ to screen primetime fare more provocative than the next gimmicky US crime drama.

Not surprisingly, Three won the night with a 25-54 share of 20.1% vs TVNZ 1’s 15.8% and TVNZ 2’s 16.7%. Three also easily won the biggest slice of the 18-49 and 18-39 demos but 2 was #1 among household shoppers with kids.

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6 Responses to “HD Ratings: Sunday Dramas Hit for a Six”

  1. Warning: preg_replace(): Unknown modifier '/' in /home/customer/www/screenscribe.net/public_html/wp-content/themes/headlines/includes/theme-comments.php on line 66
    February 1, 2018 at 2:29 pm

    Would be interested to know how the summer sport is rating – and how “formidable” or not the cricket was. Surely the cricket can’t have garnered 48% channel share of the 25-54’s for the night, could it? If the top three channels are getting only 20% of the total 25-54 audience between then then it begs the question – what are the viewers watching or are they just not watching at all?

  2. Hi Philip I know this maybe speculation but it appears TVNZ maybe preparing to jump storylines and have Coronation Street episodes broadcast closer to the UK. I was on the TVNZ Greenroom feedback forum and a recent survey asked viewers about how to bridge the gap between NZ and the UK, with it ultimately saying that change is coming in 2018. Are you able to confirm this with TVNZ and whether they are actually planning on also dumping the serial into off peak?

  3. Thanks for the heads-up, Leo. Wouldn’t be surprised if they made the move this year. Lagging 18 months behind isn’t doing Coro any favours in this market and TVNZ 1 could jump storylines and put those ‘back’ episodes online, where Coro is one of its most streamed shows. Will see what I can find out.

  4. Sorry, Mike, analysing summer sports ratings is beyond my resources. But Sky’s cricket coverage on Sunday was certainly a formidable assault on FTA broadcasters’ share of the live audience between 7.30pm and 9.30pm, especially TVNZ 1’s. It helped Sky Sport 1 to post a peak 25-54 share of 14.1% and was the biggest contributor to Sky’s overall peak 25-54 share of 31.2% (compared to TVNZ 1’s 15.8%). The cricket rated well across all the key demos, peaking with 5.1% of 25-54, 4.4% of 18-49, 4.5% of 18-39 and 6.3% of household shoppers with kids.

  5. Thanks, Philip. On occasions I’ve been accused of being a bit slow so I wonder if you can help me understand. You’re saying that the cricket with a 5.1% rating on 25-54 got a peak audience of almost 100k people (~1.8m in the 25-54 demo). So that means what – 100k watched cricket, 100k watched all other Sky channels, 50k watched each of TV1 and TV2 and that TV3 got somewhere around 75-80k viewers? Did 50k watch all other channels in totally – and that the vast majority of people (like 75% of the demographic) didn’t watch live TV at all on a Sunday night, primetime?

  6. I actually have no idea what percentage of 25-54 viewers don’t watch live TV. But it’s an interesting point. Your request goes way beyond the limits of my statistical skills (and access to data) but am seeking insight from smarter people into 25-54 viewing levels. Hopefully I’ll have something to report next week.

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