Week 12 TV: MAFS shares top spots with news in landmark week

• Nine ranked #1 with Married at First Sight continuing to perform well

Week 12 FTA primetime shares: All channels and combined

ABC 13.4% Kids/Comedy 2.4% ME 0.6% News 2.8% (19.2%)
Seven 18.7% 7TWO 3.1% 7mate 3.2% 7flix 1.7% (26.6%)
Nine 21.5% GO! 2.5% Gem 3.4% 9Life 1.8% (29.2%)
10 11.2% Bold 3.5% Peach 2.4% (17.1%)
SBS 4.6% Viceland 1.2% Food 0.9% NITV 0.1% World Movies 1.0% (7.8%)

No one is going to forget March 2020 in a hurry in particular the week just past which saw more lives lost around the world as the coronavirus story shook ways of life globally as never before.

Viewers turned to news and current affairs shows across the week which all reported increased numbers as Australians started taking notice in bigger numbers via broadcast media.

The network rankings regarding biggest programs and share of audience didn’t change too much though.

Nine ranked #1 with Married at First Sight continuing to perform well with all episodes over 1m. What did change is that it had to share the biggest audience numbers with episodes of 6pm news bulletins from Nine and Seven.

National late news bulletins hosted by Peter Overton added to Nine’s schedule with the COVID-19 updates rating well, particularly Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

Live sport was behind an uptick in ratings for Seven. But it is going to be at least 10 weeks before it will get a footy boost again. The AFL made Seven more competitive and it won Thursday, Friday and Saturday off the back of the AFL.

Week 13 promises to be a critical week for Seven with My Kitchen Rules coming to an end on Tuesday with a Grand Final showdown with a restaurant on Sydney Harbour.

Sunrise continued to dominate the breakfast TV ratings, although Today managed to post some recent highs, and was more competitive with some east coast wins.

Australian Survivor: All Stars was 10’s best with all three episodes over 700,000 and the three best results for the channel. Gogglebox and Dancing with the Stars were next best while The Project was able to average over 500,000 for its Monday to Friday episodes which hasn’t happened for a long time.

Australian Survivor: All Stars continues to record its biggest seven day broadcast video on-demand (BVOD) audience across the series. The episode on Wednesday 11 March achieved a BVOD audience of 96,000. Including seven day TV and digital audiences, the overnight ep lifted 42% to 853,000. The Monday episode lifted 30% to 913,000 while its Tuesday episode lifted 36% to 837,000. Gogglebox’s 12 March episode achieved a total audience of 867,000, lifting 42% with 7 day BVOD and consolidated TV audiences and the 12 March ep of Ambulance Australia soared 63% to 789,000 viewers.

10 News First had its biggest weekly audience since July 2017 and 10 News First 6pm had its biggest weekly audience since it started in December 2019, lifting its timeslot 59% compared with the same week in 2019.

ABC News 7pm and 7.30 all had big weeks with every episode of each averaging over 800,000. Doc Martin also set a recent high with over 800,000 spending their Saturday night at home tuning in.

There seems to be a little confusion about the name of the #1 show on SBS. It comes up in the OzTAM data as Great American Railroad Journeys, but the TV guides and most refer to it as Great Alaskan Railroad Journeys. The series of five episodes started with an average audience of 272,000.

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