TVNZ 2 Dumps Will & Grace to Late Night

TVNZ 2 at last has admitted defeat with Will & Grace by pulling the reboot from primetime.

The next episode was due to screen 8.40 tomorrow but the sitcom has been suddenly demoted to around 10.30 Wednesdays, where the rest of the latest season will air instead of Two and a Half Men re-runs.

Replacing it on Tuesdays will be new episodes of Australian reality series, Booze Patrol, which will resume from the season 11 premiere.

While the rescheduling is abrupt, you can’t accuse TVNZ 2 of not giving Will & Grace enough time to establish itself.

The network trumpeted the purchase as part of a five-series deal with NBCUniversal but after a strong start the ratings evaporated as fast as the curiosity value.

TVNZ 2 rescheduled Will & Grace several times in peak hour but the ratings stayed stubbornly low. As recently as a month ago I commented on how the latest revival was jeopardising the rest of the network’s Tuesday line-up.

Last week’s episode averaged roughly half the 18-49 and 25-54 viewerships of Three’s NCIS and finished behind TVNZ 1’s Chaos in the Castle.

Will & Grace has been renewed for a fourth season in the US, where it’s NBC’s second highest-rating scripted series in the 18-49 demographic.

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