Thursday September 6, 2018

Mediaweek TV

Special guest this week is WIN Group CEO Andrew Lancaster who speaks to Mediaweek’s James Manning from WIN Stadium Wollongong.

He discusses the new deal for a FTA Sky News channel, the new dedicated breakfast show, WIN News and media market consolidation.

WIN Network welcomes Sky News & Foxtel to channel launch

• Paul Murray show broadcasts live from WIN Stadium for media crowd

Sky News began broadcasting on the WIN TV Network around Australia last Sunday at 6am. However the Bruce Gordon and family-owned broadcaster officially welcomed its new partners to FTA TV in Wollongong last night.

WIN Television hosted a function at the appropriately named WIN Stadium last night to celebrate the new partnership. (WIN doesn’t own the venue, but has naming rights.)

Amy Duggan with Matt Russell, Geoff Phillips and Angelos Frangopoulos at the Sky News on WIN launch

Several of the speakers at the event mentioned how it was 40 years ago that Rupert Murdoch sold his controlling interest in then WIN-4, and now the WIN group under the control of the Gordon family had entered into a new partnership with News Corp to broadcast the Sky News channel on FTA TV in regional Australia. (WIN-4 was the second TV channel that Murdoch bought.)

Matt Russell from Fox Sports News did a great job hosting the event. Some of the guests did talk a bit, but for anybody with an interest in media it was a fascinating evening.

Some of the guests included people who have helped the TV landscape in recent years: Andrew Gordon, Executive Chairman, WIN; Andrew Lancaster, CEO, WIN; Angelos Frangopoulos, CEO and Managing Editor, ANC; Brian Walsh, Executive Director, Television, Foxtel, and Campbell Reid, Group Executive, Corporate Affairs, News Corp Australia.

Sky News sent plenty of talent down the highway to Wollongong for the event. Some of the commentators spoke during proceedings and then were also on air for Sky News from WIN Stadium before and after the function. Paul Murray hosted a special edition, which again last night featured photos sent in from viewers all around Australia watching their new channel. Our favourite photo so far – Peta Credlin in her ugg boots watching Sky News on Tuesday night.

Sky News provided David Speers, Paul Murray, Jaynie Seal, Janine Perrett, Rowan Dean, Ross Cameron, Samantha Dawson, Shelley Lee, and Samantha Chiari.

Fox Sports News added Matt Russell (MC), Alissa Smith (can she talk… but what a great story she has! Wait for the Mediaweek podcast), Tim Robinson, Tom Wilson and Scott Jackson.

WIN talent celebrating the new channel launch included Amy Duggan, Hayley Francis, Lincoln Humphries, Geoff Phillips (just off-air after hosting the WIN News), Bruce Roberts, Melissa Russell and Tanya Dendrinos.

Several speakers also paid tribute to WIN Network news director Stella Lauri.

Local Illawarra dignitaries included Sharon Bird MP, Member for Cunningham; Stephen Jones MP, Member for Whitlam, Shadow Minister for Regional Communications, Shadow Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government; Marianne Saliba, Mayor of Shellharbour; Gordon Bradbury AM, Lord Mayor, Wollongong; David Farmer, General Manager, Wollongong City Council; Peter Doust, CEO St George Illawarra Dragons; Brian Johnston, Chairman St George Illawarra Dragons and Paul McGregor, Head Coach, Dragons.

Top Photo: Brian Walsh with David Speers, Paul Murray, Jaynie Seal and Andrew Gordon at the Sky News on WIN launch

Part 2: Hello Sunshine CEO Sarah Harden ahead of RESET 2018

Sarah Harden doesn’t stop. Reese Witherspoon’s multiplatform media business is growing quickly and CEO Harden has nearly a major announcement-a-week at present.

By James Manning

In the few days since Harden spoke with Mediaweek, the business has seen its on-demand TV series Master The Mess launch and then just this week it has announced the Hello Sunshine Podcast Network.

Master the Mess

See also: Hit TV series, movies, Book Club + DirecTV on demand channel
Part one: Hello Sunshine’s Aussie CEO Sarah Harden talks to Mediaweek

“I started the company with Reese as her only investor 18 months ago and then stepped in to be the CEO last year,” Harden told Mediaweek. “That was on a part-time basis as I was still in my other role as CEO of Otter Media, which was sold just a couple of months ago.” AT&T recently acquired Peter Chernin’s controlling stake in Otter Media.

Harden said the focus at Otter Media was building the next generation of great media brands. “I basically had a front row seat in how to build those things economically. The world and how you make money [in media] have completely changed in the past five years. How do you work effectively and partner with consumer brands, which is what we are doing?”

Harden has a fascinating story about her early brush with media. She can remember back to when she was in primary school. “I wrote a letter to Jana Wendt and I wanted to be in journalism. 60 Minutes was my first introduction and seeing a woman hosting 60 Minutes was a very big deal for me. And she sent me a letter back, which I thought was amazing.

“I originally thought journalism and news would be for me. I did politics at university. When I later went to business school I became very excited about what was happening in the technology world. For me it was then about the intersection of tech and media, how the world was changing and in what new ways does it allow people to consume entertainment and storytelling and media in all its forms.

“I was also a big lover of movies when I grew up, but I didn’t want to be a director, producer or writer. I have always been interested in the business of the entertainment industry.”

Harden was able to study overseas, thanks to a scholarship that covered her fees.

“When I went to Harvard I got an RG Menzies Scholarship, which meant I didn’t have to stay with Boston Consulting Group [where she was working] after my studies. I subsequently moved to Silicon Valley and started a company with two guys from MIT and I wouldn’t have had the capacity to do that without the Menzies funding.

“That sent me on an entrepreneurial path. I then did 10 years at News Corp but I was in very entrepreneurial roles within that much bigger company.”

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article here or subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

The Australian Women’s Weekly Women Of The Future Awards

Bauer Media’s The Australian Women’s Weekly this week hosted its sixth annual Women of the Future (WoTF) awards.

AGL Energy was the principal sponsor of the event held at Quay in Sydney. It celebrates inspiring young women who are making a difference.

Former Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop, who is also a judge of WoTF, delivered her public address since resigning from the post late last month after the leadership spill.

Women of the Future awards winners: Sarah Moran, Caitlin Figueiredo, Ally McLean with Nicole Byers

In her 20-minute address, Bishop shared her thoughts on what is wrong with the current workplace environment in Canberra and why the dearth of female parliamentarians in Australia is a problem.

She said: “Recent events have given rise to a much broader debate around the workplace culture in Canberra. Allegations of bullying, intimidation harassment, coercion and the unfair and unequal treatment of women – unacceptable workplace practices are the responsibility of us all to identify, to stop it, to fix it.

“I firmly believe that no nation will reach its potential unless it fully embraces the talent, skill, energy, intellect and ideas of the 50% of its population that is female. It is not acceptable for us to have, in 2018, less than 25% of female parliamentarians.”

Bishop’s address was followed by a panel discussion with ABC journalist Sarah Ferguson, OzHarvest Australia CEO and founder Ronni Kahn, and Sunrise co-host Samantha Armytage.

They spoke about what it took to make a great leader, particularly for women.

The Australian Women’s Weekly AGL WoTF patron, the honourable Dame Quentin Bryce then took to the stage to participate in a Q&A with event host Virginia Trioli, co-host of ABC News Breakfast.

Nicole Byers

For the first time in its six-year history, Women of the Future nominees entered across three categories: Innovation and Technology, Entrepreneur and Business, and Community, Health and Charity. The winner of each award received over $70,000 in cash and prizes.

Ally McLean took home the Innovation and Technology award for her mentorship platform The Working Lunch, which pairs entry-level women with experienced women in the gaming industry.

Jasiri Australia founder Caitlin Figueiredo won the Community Health and Charity award. A survivor of gender-based violence, Figueiredo co-founded Jasiri Australia at just 21 to educate women on resilience and skills to both avoid or stop assaults.

Within the Entrepreneur and Business category, Sarah Moran was the overall winner. Moran is the co-founder of Geek Girl Academy, an initiative that aims to place one million women into the tech startup industry by 2025.

Alongside Bishop, the judges for 2018 WoTF were former Studio 10 host Ita Buttrose, The Project’s Lisa Wilkinson, The Australian Women’s Weekly editor Nicole Byers, deputy leader of the opposition Tanya Plibersek, AGL’s Lisa Harrington and OzHarvest’s Ronni Kahn.

The event was attended by other media personalities such as Today’s Georgie Gardner, newly announced Studio 10 panellist KerriAnne Kennerley, former Studio 10 presenter Jessica Rowe and The Morning Show’s Kylie Gilles.

Byers said: “To say we were impressed by the calibre of entries in this year’s awards is an understatement. All nine finalists have accomplished so much, breaking ground in their respective fields, and it’s truly exciting to anticipate what they’ll do next.

“I’d like to sincerely thank AGL, our patron and the award judges, panellists and of course, finalists, for allowing The Weekly to keep telling the stories of Australian women. We look forward to continuing on our path to deliver a bright female future.”

The October issue of The Australian Women’s Weekly, featuring the AGL Women of the Future Awards winners, is on sale Monday September 10.

Julie Bishop and David Patton

 

Samantha Armytage

.

Honourable Dame Quentin Bryce

 

Edwina Bartholomew

 

Kylie Gillies

 

Lisa Wilkinson

 

Jessica Rowe

 

Kerri-Anne Kennerley

Top Photo: Julie Bishop

Melbourne Esports Open attracts 12,000 fans, returning next year

The Melbourne Esports Open has made an impressive debut with co-promoter TEG reporting over 12,000 esports fans attended Melbourne Park over the weekend of September 1-2.

The online audience was also huge, with fans viewing content from the Melbourne Esports Open over 12 million times across Twitter, Facebook and Reddit. The esports community conversation on Twitter saw #MEO2018 trending #1 nationally on Saturday.

Co-promoter TEG’s CEO Geoff Jones said the success of this year’s Melbourne Esports Open proved that esports have a bright future on Australia’s major events calendar.

“We see in Europe, Asia and North America that major esports tournaments attract live audiences of 40,000 to 50,000 fans and millions online,” said Jones. “There is no reason to doubt that Australia can follow that trend and make the Melbourne Esports Open a huge live event and a significant global esports competition.

“I commend the TEG Live team and our co-promoters for producing a spectacular live event that has set a new benchmark in Australia’s esports landscape, but we now have the challenge to make it bigger and better in 2019.”

The League of Legends’ Oceanic Pro League Grand Final was the main event on Sunday September 2, with fan favourites and four-time champions the Dire Wolves taking home the trophy after toppling the Chiefs Esports Club in a 3-1 victory. The Dire Wolves will now represent Australia in the League of Legends World Championship in South Korea, and represent the Oceania region in the global championship.

The Overwatch Contenders Australian Semi and Grand Finals shared the spotlight on the Rod Laver Arena main stage on Saturday September 1. The Sydney Drop Bears took home the title as champions of Overwatch Contenders Australia Season 2, taking out Dark Sided 4-1 in the Grand Final. It was a titanic struggle where the unrelenting pressure and cool decision-making of the Drop Bears was too much for Dark Sided after a great start.

Meanwhile, Margaret Court Arena was transformed into the ESL Tournament Zone – a multi-tournament venue, featuring Forza, Overwatch, CS:GO, Pokemon and headlined by global sensation Fortnite.

Outside of Rod Laver Arena and Margaret Court Arena, thousands of fans packed into the JB Hi-Fi Game On Zone, to free play some of the hottest games along with first to play access to some of the biggest upcoming games including Marvel’s Spider-Man, Tom Clancy’s The Division and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey.

Melbourne Esports Open is co-promoted by ESL, TEG Live and Fairfax Events with the support of Visit Victoria, Victoria’s tourism and events agency.

Sydney radio wrap day 4: Interesting musical mixes 2Day & 2CH

There couldn’t be two more different parent companies – Southern Cross Austereo operates Sydney’s 2Day FM while Queensland-based regional broadcaster Resonate Broadcasting runs 2CH. However, there are a number of similarities – both have a 10+ share of 4.2% and a breakfast share of 3.3% after GfK survey 5, 2018. They are also offering audiences a very quirky musical mix.

2CH 10+ 4.2%, Breakfast 3.3%

Cume audience: 10+ 234,000, Breakfast 103,000

Garry Puckett and Neil Sedaka have never sounded so good – on the AM band. Nova’s Paul Jackson talked to Mediaweek recently about finding tunes not many other people are playing – that’s something 2CH does big time. The station’s new breakfast show with Indira Naidoo and Trevor Sinclair showcases the station’s playlist from the 60s and 70s and there is plenty of great stuff on offer.

Indira Naidoo and Trevor Sinclair

The challenge the station faces though is how to move listeners from the FM band to AM. The breakfast show features a Pop Quiz for boomers called $5,000 Minute.

There are plenty of iconic entertainment names still on air from Bob Rogers in morning, Ian Rogerson in afternoon through to Johnny Young in the evening. The station’s Best Disco In Town weekend also sounds like it could be worth a listen.

See also: Indira & Trevor: Behind Sydney’s newest breakfast show on 2CH by Kruti Joshi

104.1 2DayFM 10+ 4.2%, Breakfast 3.3%

Cume audience: 696,000, Breakfast 306,000

2Day might have the same 10+ shares as 2CH across the week and in breakfast, but the cume audiences tell a different story. The FM station has three times the cume audience of 2CH. We’ve stopped counting the number of 2Day FM breakfast show combos (or lost count might be more accurate), but there will be another one next week after Em Rusciano hosts her final program on Friday September 7.

The recent trio of Em with Grant Denyer and Ed Kavalee showed some encouraging signs of growth earlier this year, but the survey 5 results were disappointing. SCA will be hoping people might sample the station again when rising star Ash London joins Grant and Ed. The biggest shock they might get if they haven’t listened for a while is the music mix.

See also: Casual bombshell alert: Em Rusciano’s last week at 2Day FM

Hit Network head of content Gemma Fordham agreed the recent Sydney result was a little disappointing.

“It can be tough when you have momentum and encouraging ratings only then to get a bit of a whack out of nowhere,” she told Mediaweek. “We want 2Day to be successful again and we have spent the first six months of this year on what looked to be the right path. There are a couple of areas we will look at to make sure we are performing as well as we can in the workday. Even in drive we know we are getting some incorrect brand attribution for Hughesy and Kate and that is hurting us.

“We feel the strategy is right for 2Day and we know the music strategy has been correct as well. We still have work to do though after this result.

“We will cop it on the chin and keep going.”

See also from this week:
Mediaweek radio wrap: Sydney leaders 2GB and WSFM
Mediaweek radio wrap: Nova Entertainment’s powerful double
Mediaweek radio wrap: KIIS 106.5 and Triple M

TV Ratings Analysis: September 6

• The Block blow-up doesn’t crack 1m, but goes so close
• The Bachelor ranks #1 25-54 as new wave of brunettes arrive
• The Front Bar passes 400,000 for first of four finals editions

By James Manning

Seven

Home and Away just made it over 600,000 with 602,000 after 691,000 and 614,000 earlier this week.

The ob doc hour saw audiences of 350,000 for Motorbike Cops (three markets only) and 507,000 for Highway Patrol.

AFL markets then got The Front Bar a day early because of the first AFL final tonight. The episode pushed above 400,000 across the metro markets with a massive 292,000 in Melbourne.

Nine

A Current Affair had a strong midweek audience with 856,000 for a story on a master haggler.

The Block couldn’t make it to 1m for the big walkout, but 980,000 was pretty close and kept it a clear #1 after 7pm. That number was also well up on the 845,000 on Wednesday last week.

Bite Club was down again, to 456,000 after 484,000 a week ago.

TEN

Benjamin Law was a guest on The Project with 513,000 watching.

It was intruders night on The Bachelor – and they were all brunettes! The episode did 805,000 after 871,000 a week ago and the episode ranked #1 25-54 for the night.

TEN then went with the 1999 movie Runaway Bride, which did 223,000.

ABC

Brush With Fame was on 682,000 to again secure a spot in the top 10 with the final for this season to screen next week.

The penultimate episode of season four of The Weekly then did 619,000 after 578,000 last week.

The launch of Back In Very Small Business was on 348,000, followed by The Last Leg on 201,000.

The penultimate episode of Tonightly, and the last on the primary channel, did 105,000.

SBS

Michael Portillo commanded the biggest audience for a second successive night with 261,000 watching Great British Railway Journeys.

Later in the night the final episode of The Employables did 108,000.

Week 36 TV: Wednesday
WEDNESDAY METRO
ABC Seven Nine Ten SBS
ABC 11.8% 7 19.7% 9 21.2% TEN 13.7% SBS One 4.4%
ABC 2 2.8% 7TWO 3.2% GO! 3.6% ONE 3.6% VICELAND 1.0%
ABC ME 0.7% 7mate 2.7% GEM 2.3% ELEVEN 2.9% Food Net 1.0%
ABC NEWS 1.6% 7flix 2.2% 9Life 1.5% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 16.9% 27.7% 28.5% 20.2% 6.6%
WEDNESDAY REGIONAL
ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates Ten Affiliates SBS
ABC 10.6% 7 19.5% 9 18.5% WIN 11.4% SBS One 3.4%
ABC 2 3.4% 7TWO 4.1% GO! 4.5% ONE 4.0% VICELAND 1.2%
ABC ME 0.9% 7mate 3.7% GEM 4.0% ELEVEN 2.7% Food Net 1.2%
ABC NEWS 1.6% 7flix 2.0% 9Life 1.8% Sky News  on WIN 1.2% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 16.5% 29.3% 28.8% 19.3% 6.0%

 

WEDNESDAY METRO ALL TV
FTA STV
85.1% 14.9%

 

WEDNESDAY FTA
  1. Seven News Seven 996,000
  2. The Block Nine 980,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 969,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 948,000
  5. Nine News Nine 909,000
  6. A Current Affair Nine 856,000
  7. The Bachelor Australia Ten 805,000
  8. ABC News ABC 709,000
  9. Anh’s Brush With Fame ABC 682,000
  10. The Weekly With Charlie Pickering ABC 619,000
  11. Home And Away Seven 602,000
  12. 7.30 ABC 595,000
  13. The Chase Australia Seven 558,000
  14. The Project 7 PM Ten 513,000
  15. Highway Patrol Seven 507,000
  16. Hot Seat Nine 461,000
  17. Bite Club Nine 456,000
  18. Criminal Minds Seven 425,000
  19. Ten Eyewitness News First At Five Ten 403,000
  20. The Front Bar Seven 401,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. The Bachelor Australia Ten 374,000
  2. The Block Nine 239,000
  3. The Project 7 PM Ten 184,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 147,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 140,000

 

18-49 Top 5

  1. The Bachelor Australia Ten 515,000
  2. The Block Nine 398,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 273,000
  4. The Project 7 PM Ten 266,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 245,000

 

25-54 Top 5

  1. The Bachelor Australia Ten 492,000
  2. The Block Nine 464,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 325,000
  4. A Current Affair Nine 298,000
  5. Nine News Nine 283,000
WEDNESDAY Multichannel
  1. Noddy Toyland Detective PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 197,000
  2. Peppa Pig PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 194,000
  3. Hey Duggee PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 186,000
  4. Fireman Sam PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 173,000
  5. The Big Bang Theory Tx3 9GO! 171,000
  6. Pj Masks PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 170,000
  7. Little Roy PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 169,000
  8. The Big Bang Theory Tx2 9GO! 169,000
  9. Thomas And Friends: Big World! Big Adventure! ABCKIDS/COMEDY 158,000
  10. Peppa Pig Am ABCKIDS/COMEDY 157,000
  11. Rusty Rivets ABCKIDS/COMEDY 156,000
  12. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 155,000
  13. The Big Bang Theory Tx1 9GO! 152,000
  14. Andy’s Wild Adventures ABCKIDS/COMEDY 151,000
  15. Go Jetters AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 150,000
  16. Neighbours ELEVEN 148,000
  17. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 145,000
  18. Becca’s Bunch Am ABCKIDS/COMEDY 145,000
  19. Charlie And Lola Am ABCKIDS/COMEDY 144,000
  20. Dot. ABCKIDS/COMEDY 141,000
WEDNESDAY Subscription TV
  1. Gogglebox Australia LifeStyle Channel 174,000
  2. Live: AFL 360 FOX FOOTY 74,000
  3. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 63,000
  4. Mayans M.C. showcase 62,000
  5. Selling Houses Australia LifeStyle Channel 61,000
  6. Live: Sportscenter ESPN 53,000
  7. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 50,000
  8. Family Guy FOX8 50,000
  9. Live: NRL 360 FOX LEAGUE 48,000
  10. Force 10 From Navarone FOX Classics 44,000
  11. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 42,000
  12. American Dad! FOX8 42,000
  13. Credlin Sky News Live 41,000
  14. Family Guy FOX8 41,000
  15. Live: Sportscenter ESPN 40,000
  16. Wentworth showcase 40,000
  17. George Clarke’s Best Of Amazing Spaces LifeStyle Channel 38,000
  18. The Simpsons FOX8 38,000
  19. NCIS TVH!TS 34,000
  20. Escape To The Country LifeStyle Channel 34,000

Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2018. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM

Media News Roundup

Business of Media

Crocmedia NSW advertising roadshow for agencies and clients

Crocmedia’s New South Wales team is embarking on a roadshow to key agencies to introduce themselves to the market. With a strong footprint in Victoria, the business wants to ensure agencies and client partners understand the full depth of the business and resources accessible by partnering with Crocmedia.

Taking place throughout September in Sydney, the sessions will offer agencies an insight into Crocmedia’s capability to deliver brand stories nationally across Australia over multiple platforms including radio, television, online, in-stadium and events.

Crocmedia reaches over 3 million people each week. Crocmedia is Australia’s largest syndicator of radio sports content, creating over 300 hours of radio per week and broadcasting via hundreds of stations around the country.

This summer Crocmedia’s coverage of the Big Bash League will present a number of opportunities for agencies.

Crocmedia’s Sydney commercial team includes Sarah Boon, Liam Scullin, Tom Drinkwater and Anna Mace, led by national director of sales Emily McGrath.

McGrath said of the team, “It’s time to make sure that Crocmedia is front of mind when our Sydney-based clients are considering the opportunities in the sporting landscape. We’ll call on our talent pool to join us in the offices of our agency partners, and will be offering some great initiatives for engagement at the events.”

Sessions will run 30-40 minutes and are hosted by commentator Russell Barwick, and Crocmedia’s Emily McGrath.

Agency teams at the catered roadshow will have the chance to win an NRL Grand Final Experience, with the Q&A-style sessions presenting an opportunity to converse directly with past and present sporting stars present at each event.

News Brands

Missing fact sees Fairfax Media come unstuck on honey

Fairfax Media has been left red-faced after its latest joint investigation with the ABC failed to disclose a crucial fact that might have raised doubts about the core of the story, reports The Australian’s Chris Merritt.

The article, over three pages in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald on Monday, was based on scientific testing showing Capilano’s Allowrie-branded mixed blossom honey had been adulterated. It reported the testing had been commissioned by law firm King & Wood Mallesons for horticulturalist Robert Costa.

The article, by Adele Ferguson and Chris Gillett, did not disclose that the law firm that commissioned the report on Capilano’s honey was acting separately for another client trying to buy the company.

A spokesman for Capilano said the company would have hoped the conflict of interest had been picked up earlier.

A Fairfax Media spokesman said: “We stand by the integrity of our reporting of the significant public interest concerns raised by the NMR tests, which were independently commissioned by horticulturalist Robert Costa, as clearly explained in the story.

[Read the original]

Television

Why Aussie blokes are watching The Bachelor in record numbers

Now in its sixth season, The Bachelor’s ratings are higher than ever – due entirely to a jump in male viewers, reports Fairfax Media’s Michael Lallo.

So far, the show’s average audience is 916,000 across the major capitals, up 76,000 on last year.

More than 75,000 of these new fans are men. Fewer than 1,000 are women. Overall, men now comprise a record 36% of Network Ten’s Bachelor audience, compared to 28% in 2014.

The obvious answer is the bachelor himself: retired rugby professional Nick “Honey Badger” Cummins. The epitome of Aussie blokehood, Cummins communicates entirely in ocker aphorisms and rhyming slang. Expressed as a mathematical formula, he is Alf Stewart multiplied by Barry McKenzie to the power of Russell Coight.

Almost certainly, Cummins’s sporting credentials lured men who’d previously dismissed The Bachelor as a “chick show”. But there’s a less apparent reason for his success: Sophie Monk.

To date, Monk’s 2017 season of The Bachelorette has out-rated every other iteration of the franchise, including Bachelor in Paradise. Among male viewers, she was nearly as popular as Cummins.

Her blonde bombshell status is a tempting explanation but, in fact, her wicked sense of humour played a bigger role.

[Read the original]

Tonightly’s final fling: TV Tonight on the ABC and comedy greats

Back in the early 1990s when low-rating Nine soap Chances was cut from twice a week to a single episode in a late night slot, producers decided to go for broke, reports TV Tonight’s David Knox.

Storylines infamously went for the outrageous, with sex, bondage, lesbians, an angel on a Harley Davidson motorcycle, an Egyptian Sun Goddess, laser-wielding vampires, man-eating plants, and neo-Nazis. It was so camp the show actually began to find a cult audience and it’s now all anybody remembers about a show that began with a lottery winning family.

I’m reminded of this because since ABC announced Tonightly with Tom Ballard will end (tonight September 6), the team has similarly gone for broke with its comedy. There have been flashes of brilliance in recent sketches and bold ideas, notably in its Conservatively and Tonightly2068 editions.

Last night Ballard delivered one of his most scathing monologues yet. His take on the whole sorry Climate Change saga and backdown on emission targets took aim at Malcolm Turnbull, Labor, the Greens, and the political system.

ABC has a history of comedians who all pushed the envelope with firebrand comedy: from Aunty Jack and Norman Gunston to Max Gillies, John Clarke, John Safran, Andrew Denton, Wendy Harmer, Shaun Micallef, Judith Lucy, Chris Lilley, Kath & Kim, Doug Anthony All Stars, The Chaser and more. Many of them bucked the establishment, and Australians loved them all the more for it.

ABC needs to grow a spine and back its talent.

Look to your history. Make the numbers work as a weekly show on the primary channel, guys!

[Read the original]

Chilling House of Cards teaser confirms Frank Underwood death

You suspected it. But now it’s been confirmed.

House Of Cards has killed off its main character. Frank Underwood will have met his mortal demise sometime between seasons five and six, reports news.com.au’s Wenlei Ma.

Netflix has released a new clip from the forthcoming final season of its political thriller, one that shows Robin Wright’s Claire Underwood standing over something, looking down.

“I’ll tell you this, Francis,” she says, clearly not in grief. “When they bury me, it won’t be in my backyard. And when they pay their respects, they’ll have to wait in line.”

The camera then pans to the ground, to a headstone that reads Calvin Underwood before it reveals another headstone next to it, one that says “Frank Underwood 1959-2017”.

[Read the original]

Watch the Netflix trailer here.

Audio

Gold 104.3 breakfast produces a new city anthem for Melbourne

Gold 104.3’s Christian O’Connell Breakfast Show unveiled a new anthem this week in the presence of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp.

Called Sing It For Melbourne, it got the Mayor’s tick of approval as an “epic anthem”.

The song has been written by O’Connell’s co-host Jack Post with listeners of the Gold 104.3 breakfast contributing their ideas. It features vocals from Melbourne school choir at Vocal Arts Studios and local singer Michael Mills from musical group Toehider jumped on board. Seven sports commentator Hamish McLachlan can also be heard on the track.

[Read the original]

Sports Media

21st Century Fox in the ring with Premier Boxing Champions deal

21st Century Fox has struck a four-year agreement with Premier Boxing Champions for the rights to carry fights on the Fox broadcast network, Fox Sports 1 cable channel and pay-per-view, starting in December, reports The Wall Street Journal’s Joe Flint.

The media giant is stockpiling programming in preparation for life after it completes the sale of the majority of its entertainment assets to Walt Disney, a deal that will leave behind a “New Fox” focused heavily on sports and its Fox News Channel.

In January, the company struck a $US3.3 billion, five-year pact with the National Football League for rights to Thursday night football. In June it reached a five-year agreement to carry World Wrestling Entertainment content for just over $US1bn.

[Read the original]

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