AFL the standout in a ratings week filled with entertainment misfires


Week 40 delivered an AFL powered victory for Seven with all three nights of footy finals action delivering massive audiences across the country.

Outside of footy, it was a week that was a bit hard to get excited about. 10 launched a new multi-channel, but not many viewers noticed. And there was plenty of other entertainment titles across the board which failed to deliver the goods.

Key Data

  • Seven was the nb1 primary channel with a 21.3% share.
  • Seven was also the nb1 network with a 31.1% share.
  • 10’s primary channel share collapsed to a 2020 record low of just 9.5%.
  • 7Mate was the nb1 multi-channel with 4.3%
  • Nine won the primary channel share in the 25-54s demo – Seven won 16-39s.
  • Sunday’s Room Reveal episode of The Block was the most-watched program on streaming catchup platforms

 (full channel data below)


Seven kicked off its week with the final of three All New Monty specials, with a decent sized audience tuning in to see the ladies get their gear off for charity. One does wonder how many more times the network can revisit this format.

  • Performance – 1.211mil (800k metro)
  • Sunday – 1.064mil (717k)

Seven also used Sunday evening to air a LIVE finance special 7News Spotlight: Surviving The Crash. In a further sign that viewers are tiring of alarmist COVID-19 programming, the show averaged a mere 465k (315k metro).

Monday and Tuesday was a bit of a disaster for Seven, the cancellation of the Olympics has left a sizable programming hole and its starting to show with the network forced to move America’s Got Talent into primetime. It flopped hard.

  • Monday – 374k national (226k metro)
  • Monday (Ep 2) – 252k (160k)
  • Tuesday – 356k (232k)
  • Tuesday (Ep 2) – 279k (186k)

The big winner for week however was the networks AFL coverage. Average viewership for the four matches was up 24% year on year in metro markets.

Friday night’s match between Brisbane and Richmond was the top sport of the week, with a huge audience of 1.232m national (947k metro) including 521k in Melbourne.


In a week surrounded by low rating duds, The Block stood out as a consistent powerhouse for Nine.

  • Sunday (Room Winners) – 1.331mil national (997k metro)
  • Sunday – 1.280mil (928k metro)
  • Monday – 1.144mil (837k)
  • Tuesday – 1.145mil (809k)
  • Wednesday – 1.114mil (828k)

Other highlights for Nine include 60 Minutes with 729k (520k metro).

Australian Crime Stories on Wednesday is on the decline however with just 477k (328k metro).

The biggest concern for Nine would be it’s NRL coverage. The dominance of Sydney teams over Queensland has created a situation where the code is now only attracting a decent viewing audience in NSW.


The long-awaited launch of 10’s third multichannel 10Shake got off to a rocky start this week recording a 0.5% weekly share. For context, the new channel finished equal with ABCME, but behind SBS Food 0.9% and World Movies 0.8%.

10Shake is an interesting (and perhaps foolhardy) gamble by 10 with the network using the channel to target a youth audience that abandoned free-to-air television a long time ago.

10 used the week to revisit one of Australia’s biggest crime stories with Lindy Chamberlain: The True Story. Despite plenty of publicity, it’s clear viewers were no longer that interested in the 40-year-old tale. The second episode did do a bit better than the first.

  • Sunday – 552k (365k metro)
  • Monday – 784k (549k)

Once again, Have You Been Paying Attention was the highlight of 10’s week with 894k nationally (636k metro). It’s might be a simple concept, but the outstanding cast can always be relied upon to deliver the laughs.

Todd Sampson’s Bodyhack has failed to fire this year for 10. The final of three episodes this season fell to just 379k (255k metro). It’s a good show which deserves better.

Gogglebox on Thursday evening had a national audience of 650k (475k metro).


So, what’s more embarrassing for Rupert Murdoch? Being the subject of a 3-part expose, or the revelation viewers really are not that interested. Episode two of The Rise of the Murdoch Dynasty delivered a Sunday night audience of 625k nationally (433k metro), well down the network’s usual British drama offerings.

Weekly highlights on ABC included:

  • Grantchester – 673k national (440k metro)
  • Australian Story – 947k (639k metro)
  • Four Corners – 765k(531k metro)
  • Anh’s Brush with Fame – 979k (716k)
  • Further Back In Time For Dinner – 842k (591k)
  • Hard Quiz – 998k (705k)
  • Mad As Hell – 838k (585k)
  • Planet America – 558k (430k)


Home and Away was the top Australian drama averaging 814k (481k metro) Monday-Thursday.

As it nears its finale, Halifax Retribution continued to maintain its audience with 729k nationally (496k metro) for Nine.

The season (and potentially permanent) finale for The Heights finished on 326k (230k metro) for ABC.


7NEWS was the top show nationally every night, with Monday-Friday at 6pm averaging 1.527mil (997k metro.). 9News was the overall winner in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane.

Sunrise continued its dominance at breakfast, winning every morning, with Monday-Friday averaging 444k national/ 256k metro.

Weekly Network and Channel Shares – Week 40

Seven Network – 31.1%

  • Seven – 21.3%
  • 7TWO – 3.6%
  • 7mate – 4.3%
  • 7flix – 1.9%

Nine Network – 27.9%

  • Nine – 19.7%
  • 9Go – 2.5%
  • 9Gem – 2.3%
  • 9Life – 2.2%
  • 9Rush – 1.2%

10 Network – 15.9%

  • 10 – 9.5%
  • 10Bold – 3.5%
  • 10Peach – 2.4%
  • 10Shake – 0.5%

ABC Network – 17.6%

  • ABC – 13.1%
  • Kids/Comedy – 2.4%
  • ABC Me 0.5%
  • ABC News – 1.6%

SBS Network – 7.6%

  • SBS – 4.5%
  • Viceland – 1.2%
  • SBS Food – 0.9%
  • NITV – 0.1%
  • World Movies 0.8%
Kevin Perry
Co-Creator and Editor of the TV Blackbox website, Kevin Perry is an experienced media commentator focused on TV Production, Consumer Tech, SVOD & Sports Broadcasting. Media enquiries please Call or Text 0428-275-111



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