Yes - Ten needed to act on Everybody Dance Now – but the end result with programming next week will simply leave viewers more confused than ever.
In summary, Ten have cut Everybody Dance now to one hour per week on Sunday night only, brought forward by one day the premiere of Don’t Tell The Bride, and also brought forward the premiere of I Will Survive – which based on the majority of commentary about the show, will suffer the same dismal ratings as Everybody Dance now.
After weeks of sneak peeks and advertisements on Ten promoting premiere dates of I Will Survive and Don’t Tell The Bride, the sudden change of dates will leave many potential viewers confused and possibly cause them to miss the shows they were looking forward to.
Unfortunately for Ten, ratings overall are so low that many will still not be aware of the programming changes – unless they actually watch Ten or read stories on sites like Throng. Masterchef All Stars last night – currently the highest rating nightly show on Ten – was loaded with ads with the new premiere dates of I Will Survive and Don’t Tell The Bride. Yet the two minute Don’t Tell the Bride Sneak Peek before Masterchef All Stars started last night simply said “Soon on Ten” – surely – after investing two minutes of our time watching the promo, they could at least update us with an air date?
The lack of promoting future air dates until the last minute on Australian free to Air TV is common practise – usually we rarely know when a new show will air until around one week before its actual air date. In the US for example, they release air dates months in advance. Ten, during the Olympics and while Masterchef All Stars aired had for once promoted air dates for their new shows. Now two of them have changed – less than a week away from their launch dates.
Printed guides – governed by harsh deadlines will most likely be wrong for next week. TV Week for sure will be incorrect, seeing they publish TV Guides so far in advance.
Potential viewers of I Will Survive and Don’t Tell The Bride who are not watching anything on Ten at the moment or are not following TV web sites like Throng will have no idea about the sudden change of launch dates for these two shows.
What Ten should have done is launched Don’t Tell the Bride and I Will Survive on the nights they have been advertising. Yes, they had to act on Everybody Dance Now, but they could have cut that down to just Sunday night, filled in Monday night with Modern Family repeats or similar and left Don’t Tell the Bride and I will Survive on their original planned launch dates.
Then, during those shows, they could promote changes for the following week.
Then there is The Shire – which has moved to its 3rd timeslot in its few weeks on air. As one fan said “I am enjoying the show, but I cannot keep up with all its times slot changes, not to mention random start times that never match what they advertise”. We all know that last point refers to 8pm advertised becoming as late as 8.15 on some occasions.
Ten need stability. Ten are worse than Nine when it comes to last minute programming changes. At least when Excess Baggage flopped on Nine, they waited until the show’s second week concluded before major programming changes took effect - these changes saw the show move to GO! and basically disappear of the ratings radar. It averaged less than 100,000 viewers by the time Excess Baggage finished.
As for the future of Everybody Dance Now?
Ten will try the new shortened format – just one hour a week instead of three or four – with a rejig of the format – but if it continues to draw figures in the 300,000 range, it will have to go.
I still maintain the best outcome for Everybody Dance Now is to sell it quickly to Foxtel – where 300,000 viewers is a success and the show can attract a niche audience which generally free to air can’t do.