What were Nine doing last night with their EPG?
In checking programming and planned recordings for last night, I noticed that The Big Bang Theory showed on the EPG (Nine, Sydney) as a 7.27pm start, with Top Gear to follow starting at 7.55pm.
Following Top Gear, was Ben Elton showing a 9.40pm start time. At least the EPG was accurate, as all three of these shows started
The 9.40 start time for Ben Elton was fair enough – seeing that both Seven and Ten’s 8.30pm shows also showed as finishing around 9.40.
But what is with starting a new episode of Big Bang 3 minutes early, and Top Gear 5 minutes early? That’s a very long Top Gear episode – an hour and 45 minutes.
Anyone not going by the EPG and relying on advertised start times of 7.30 and 8pm will have missed out the start of both these new shows. The encore of Big Bang on GO! at 10.30pm was also scheduled to start a few minutes early.
Whatever the reason or motivation for these early start times, it didn’t help Nine in the ratings last night – in channel primary shares, Nine was third behind Seven and Ten. Early starts are worse than late starts – at least a late start viewers can wait, but if early, they miss out on parts of the show.