HD Ratings: Sunday Night Trauma for TVNZ 1

TVNZ 1’s latest British thriller Trauma ends on Sunday — and the network will be glad it was only a three-parter after last weekend’s distressing ratings.

Episode two averaged only 1.9% of the network’s core 25-54 viewership while lead-out Ride Upon the Storm limped home with 0.4% — which probably means any other high-minded Europeans drama series TVNZ licenses will now languish on-demand only (like Modus).

Fans of the series will be relieved to know Sunday’s finale is, according to The Telegraph, “largely” satisfying.

We got answers to most of our questions, even if the central premise of the series was still slightly frustrating.

Trauma was visceral portrayal of parental grief which moved into revenge thriller territory, a genre-hop which was skilfully handled by director Marc Evans.

The moral of the tale might have been a little strange – stalking and vigilantism seemed to be rewarded – but it kept us guessing and exerted a vice-like grip.

But Radio Times reports “viewers were torn over the ending … Lots of viewers who thought they were ‘fed up’ with the series still couldn’t tear their eyes away.”

In the UK, Trauma was stripped across three consecutive nights to build momentum and although the second episode shed a million viewers, its premiere easily outrated another John Simms drama that launched at the same time on BBC2, Collateral (streaming on Netflix).

Here, both Trauma and Ride Upon the Wind were hammered by Three’s blockbuster combo of Married at First Sight Australia (7.6%) and the network premiere of Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising (5.2%).

The latter crushed TVNZ 2’s premiere of Ghostbusters not only in this demographic (2.8%) but also in the channel’s own core viewership, 18-49 (2.1% vs Neighbors’ 4.5%), 18-39 (1.9% vs 4.3%) and household shoppers with kids (2.2% vs 4.7%).

So far 2’s Australian Spartan isn’t proving strong enough to challenge MAFS, with Sunday’s instalment averaging only 2.8% of 18-49s, 2.5% of 18-39s, 3.1% of 25-54s and 4.9% of HHS/k.

In the 18-49 and 25-54 demos, Spartan finished third after TVNZ 1’s Sunday.

As a result, Three trounced its rivals with the night’s biggest 25-54 share — 31.1% vs 1’s 19.8% and 2’s 14.9% — and was ahead by similar margins in the other core demos, too.

TVNZ 2’s hasty Friday night pre-emption of The Crystal Maze and Will & Grace for Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl lifted its viewership enough to mostly win the night.

But Three stalwarts The Graham Norton Show and 7 Days still won their slots in the 25-54 and 18-49 demos — and should so tonight against softer competition on 2 (The Legend of Zorro, Lethal Weapon).

TVNZ 1’s Hell’s Kitchen Australia, Doc Martin and Coronation Street finished a distant third.

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