TV Ratings March 18: The Front Bar v midweek Footy Classified

• Nine #1 with commitment ceremony on Married At First Sight

• Nine #1 with commitment ceremony on Married At First Sight
• The audience chooses: The Front Bar v midweek Footy Classified
• News and current affairs shows have biggest week for some time
• Should Seven late news be renamed The Coronavirus Latest?

News audience: major FTA news in massive news week

Seven News
Monday 1,098,000/1,017,000
Tuesday 1,145,000/1,057,000
Wednesday 1,096/1,054,000

Nine News
Monday 1,066,000/1,047,000
Tuesday 983,000/997,000
Wednesday 985,000/988,000

ABC News
Monday 856,000
Tuesday 880,000
Wednesday 827,000

10 News
Monday 519,000/330,000 (6pm)
Tuesday 511,000/302,000
Wednesday 489,000/326,000

SBS World News
Monday 144,000
Tuesday 156,000
Wednesday 162,000

A Current Affair
Monday 848,000
Tuesday 850,000
Wednesday 807,000

Monday 888,000
Tuesday 823,000
Wednesday 843,000

The Project
Monday 387,000/582,000 (7pm)
Tuesday 338,000/512,000
Wednesday 359,000/524,000

Nine News Special: COVID-19
Monday 632,000
Tuesday 637,000
Wednesday 664,000

Seven News: The Latest
Monday 340,000
Tuesday 369,000
Wednesday 353,000

Monday 315,000
Tuesday 287,000
Wednesday 324,000

Monday 236,000
Tuesday 246,000
Wednesday 251,000 (Biggest show since 2018)

ABC News Breakfast
Monday 228,000
Tuesday 238,000
Wednesday 238,000

News and current affairs shows are having their best weeks for this year and possibly the best weeks for much longer than that.

Seven News at 6pm has the edge still, but all five network news bulletins are posting bigger audiences.

News and current affairs shows are also doing their best numbers in some time – A Current Affair and 7.30 have each been above 800,000 every night this week.

Nine’s late bulletin has been over 600,000 each night. It has a much better lead-in, and a better name too. Maybe it is time for Seven to work Coronavirus into its title?

Best of the rest

It was time for the final commitment ceremony on Married at First Sight with all five remaining couples deciding to stay in the show. The audience was again 1m+ on 1,077,000.

Nine’s new midweek edition of Footy Classified debuted last night. It was a pretty busy night for host Eddie McGuire. After being involved in discussions about the start date of the 2020 season earlier in the day, he guested on Fox Footy’s AFL 360, filmed an intro to the new Footy Classified at the MCG and then made it into the Nine Dockland’s studio to host the show. He was joined on the show by Caroline Wilson and Matthew Lloyd from the Monday program and former coach Ross Lyon made his TV analyst debut. The content was good, the ratings not quite so spectacular. That was partly because it started 90 minutes later than Seven’s The Front Bar in Melbourne. That is also a good thing – going head to head could have been bad news for at least one of the programs.

Seven’s Front Bar was the #2 show in Melbourne, only narrowly trailing the size of the 6pm news audience. The long break meant the writing team was stockpiling gags and it was a cracking Front Bar episode. Viewers had to wait until a little later in the program until new recruit Andy Lee took his place behind the bar. There was a studio audience of just two – some bloke and Sunrise’s Cash Cow.

10’s final Survivor episode of the week was going to be a formality with two versus four. AK was targeted at Tribal Council and a late intervention from the producers gave him a chance in a fire challenge to burn a piece of string. But he couldn’t quite match Moana’s fire skills and the final five is now all set for the final week. The audience of 714,000 was just short of Tuesday’s record.

An encore episode of Hard Quiz was on 753,000 on the ABC.

Mad As Hell also finished top 10 with 737,000.

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