Top Gear - Polar Special draws 4.5 million viewers

TurnerGTX

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The BBC2 launch of critically acclaimed US drama Heroes last night helped power the channel to what is believed to be its biggest peaktime ratings win over BBC1 since 1994.

BBC2's superhero series, which has already been broadcast on cable and satellite channel Sci Fi earlier this year, launched from 9pm with an impressive 4.3 million viewers and a 19% share.

The second episode ran immediately afterwards at 9.40pm, and that picked up an audience of 4 million viewers, according to unofficial overnights.

There will be more cheer for the BBC too in the fact that Heroes was more popular with young viewers than Big Brother.

Billed as "geek heaven" by TV critics, and one of the few hits of last autumn's new US TV season on NBC, Heroes was in danger of overheating from pre-premiere hype.

But the BBC's gamble on the show, which the director general, Mark Thompson, has described as "wholesome" and reportedly cost the corporation ?500,000 an episode, appears to have paid off.

However, it was given a big helping hand by a special hour-long edition of Top Gear, scheduled before Heroes last night in the BBC2 8pm hour.

Top Gear - Polar Special drew 4.5 million viewers and a 21% audience share. These are good figures for BBC2, although below Top Gear's stellar audiences of up to 8 million for the series broadcast earlier this year after presenter Richard Hammond's recovery from a life threatening high speed crash.


The BBC2 car show froze out National Lottery Jet Set on BBC1, which averaged 1.9 million viewers between 8pm and 8.30pm; and Vet Safari, which drew 1.8 million between 8.30pm and 9pm.

BBC2 beat BBC1 last night in peaktime, between 7pm and 10.30pm, by what is believed to be the biggest margin for 13 years.

Although BBC2 beat its bigger sibling a couple of times last year in peaktime when The Apprentice was on, plus on July 31 2005 when BBC2 had a combination of Coast and Top Gear, those were tiny wins of around less than half a share point.

Last night BBC2 beat BBC1 in peak by 2.4 share points, according to unofficial overnights.

The last time the gap was larger was June 27 1994. That day Wimbledon and a World Cup game between Germany and South Korea meant BBC2 beat BBC1 by 10.7 share points.
http://media.guardian.co.uk/site/story/0,,2135304,00.html
 

jensked

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I would like to know how many times it was downloaded worldwide...
 

Tranquillizer

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hey, its really wao, i mean 4.5 Mil, thats a lot.
its as every person including children in melbourne and perth watching at a time.
but how do they get to know that these many people have turned on their tv's.
because 4.5 Mil viewers wouldnt mean 4.5 Mil people, it means 4.5Mil Tv units were tunned into that program.
but how they calculate these exact figures. i can not understand this thingy?
 

zyrex

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so in other words, the whole complete population of norway was watching Top Gear then :p
 

whitehornmatt

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hey, its really wao, i mean 4.5 Mil, thats a lot.
its as every person including children in melbourne and perth watching at a time.
but how do they get to know that these many people have turned on their tv's.
because 4.5 Mil viewers wouldnt mean 4.5 Mil people, it means 4.5Mil Tv units were tunned into that program.
but how they calculate these exact figures. i can not understand this thingy?
They put boxes that record TV figures in something like 1000 homes in Melbourne (for example), the people who get them are chosen to be proportional to the amount of total people in a given age/gender group, then the numbers get multiplied to correspond to the entire population. So if 300 of those 1000 are watching Top Gear, and the population is 3,000,000 they will say that 900,000 people were watching. The boxes check regularly the amount of people watching the TV so the figure is about the people watching and not the number of TVs tuned to it.
 

Tranquillizer

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They put boxes that record TV figures in something like 1000 homes in Melbourne (for example), the people who get them are chosen to be proportional to the amount of total people in a given age/gender group, then the numbers get multiplied to correspond to the entire population. So if 300 of those 1000 are watching Top Gear, and the population is 3,000,000 they will say that 900,000 people were watching. The boxes check regularly the amount of people watching the TV so the figure is about the people watching and not the number of TVs tuned to it.
thats seems bit dodgy, do we have anything like that here in australia???
can foxtel/austar find out if we are watching their specific channel.?
 

LoneWolf

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Does anyone know where it ranked relative to all the other terrestrial broadcasts on at the same time?

Either way, good figures and well deserved, this was the best TG Special IMHO, better then the Winter Olympics and American road trip ep. :)
 

nomix

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20 % is pretty good no matter.

And as for downloading, well, Top Gear has always been at the top of those rankings, so it's bound to be.. good.
 

whitehornmatt

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thats seems bit dodgy, do we have anything like that here in australia???
can foxtel/austar find out if we are watching their specific channel.?
Yep, there is one in Australia. Foxtel is incorporated into the ratings system, something like 20% of Australians have subscription TV, 200 of the 1000 people I used in my previous example would have a ratings box that monitors their Foxtel viewing as well. It isn't as if everyone with Foxtel has their viewing monitored (they can keep track of Mainevent and Foxtel Box Office viewing because you have to pay for it)
 

Tranquillizer

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ok, i must say here that as i have the foxtel digital, foxtel can not know if we have connected due to the nature of their smart car. they can only know once we put in the telephone line with the set top box.
now how many people in australia use phone line with foxtel.
:rolleyes:

not me atleast.
i took al these info from the foxtel salesman.
 

bjay650

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I think they will get at least that many viewers again when its repeated on Sunday night. I for one will be watching again as I suspect a lot of others who watched on Wednesday night plus there will be all the folks who missed it.
 
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