It is harder to find big audiences as the week progresses, but all channels this year tasted Thursday success – build it and they will come.
The night was peppered with NRL and AFL games this year. While the NRL goes big on Thursday nights, the AFL is not yet convinced. There are seven AFL Thursday night games in 2018, one fewer than 2017. The NRL has programmed Thursday games for 23 of the 25 rounds in 2018.
Most of the big franchises now don’t run on Thursday – among them My Kitchen Rules and The Block. That has left the door open for TEN, which has had good Thursday figures for MasterChef Australia and, of course, The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. TEN has also kicked goals with two seasons of Gogglebox on Thursdays.
Seven was the disruptor late in the year though when it programmed a second episode of The Good Doctor on Thursdays. It also created some havoc with The Front Bar, which took on Nine’s long-running AFL Footy Show. Nine reacted by replacing new co-host Craig Hutchison with Eddie McGuire, which had good initial results before the numbers dropped again.
Seven’s best Thursday metro primary share came late in the year courtesy of The Good Doctor with 24.1% just last week. Seven saw share climb to 33.1% during the Australian Open in January.
Nine’s biggest Thursday was 24.4% in week 34 in August with an AFL Footy Show with Eddie McGuire and an NRL match.
TEN’s best Thursday share was better than both its competitors – 25.5% at the end of October for the final of The Bachelorette.