MKR suffers more ‘disastrous’ ratings
Things have gone from bad to worse for Channel 7's new season of My Kitchen Rules: The Rivals.
The cooking show launched on Sunday night and was smashed in the ratings by Channel 9's coverage of the Australian Open and Channel 10's I'm a Celeb finale.
"It was always a risk to put the launch of MKR up against the tennis, and it's a gamble which hasn't paid off," Rob McKnight, a former Channel 10 executive producer who now runs TV Blackbox, told news.com.au yesterday.
But TV commentators said the real test for MKR would come on Monday night when it took on the new season of Married At First Sight on Channel 9 and Australian Survivor: All Stars on Channel 10.
The ratings are now out, and it's not good news for Channel 7.
MAFS won the night with 1.15 million viewers (five city metro), Australian Survivor came second with 624,000 viewers and MKR had just 519,000 viewers.
MKR was also beaten by the ABC's 7.30 and Back Roads, which had 598,000 and 578,000 viewers respectively.
"After a disastrous start on Sunday night the figures for MKR last night are not that surprising," Mr McKnight told news.com.au today.
The Channel 7 cooking show was revamped this year and pits five favourite (Faves) teams against five new teams (Fans).
The Fans live together and represent the House of Colin (Fassnidge), while the Faves share quarters and fight for the House of Manu (Feildel).
"Viewers don't seem to like the changes the show has made or fatigue has simply set in," Mr McKnight said. "Let's not forget MKR has been a solid performer for many years, but maybe its time has come."
The TV commentator added that it was too early to write off Channel 7 and "there are many battles to come" in the remainder of the year.
"Seven, which was number one for a very long time, is facing an identity crisis," Mr McKnight told news.com.au. "With a new CEO they are in the process of realigning and working out a long-term strategy.
"I wouldn't write them off just yet, but the PR battle is fast and furious and the headlines aren't great for them at the moment."
There's certainly no shortage of TV to watch at the moment. MKR airs four nights a week from Sundays through to Wednesdays. MAFS airs five nights a week from Sundays through to Thursdays, and Australian Survivor airs three nights a week from Mondays to Wednesdays.
"It's well and truly game on at the moment, and official ratings don't even start until next week!" Mr McKnight told news.com.au. "This is going to be a crazy year for the TV industry, and I can't wait."