They say we want to see ourselves on screen

There’s this old adage around having taxpayer funding for local content that it’s so we can see ourselves on screen. But do we really want to?

I’m talking, of course, about the ratings between TV3’s The X Factor NZ and The Bachelor NZ and the new series of TV2’s My Kitchen Rules from Australia.

After only 3 days, TV2 has beaten the local shows every night.


Yes there is on demand. Yes there is timeshifted. Yes there is plus one. But why is it that the ratings reflect that Kiwis would rather watch a cooking show from Australia that is weeks old over the talent and dating shows from New Zealand when they are first broadcast here?

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About the author

Regan is one of the co-founders of Throng Media.
If they're on, I'm usually watching Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, 24, Battlestar Galactica, The X Factor, Survivor, House of Cards, Mad Men and the NRL.
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  • Simon Green

    It’s about the type of show. I imagine MKR NZ will screen about the same by as The Bachelor / The Bachelorette AU is screened (the later is scheduled for Q4). I would imagine that MKR NZ would rate higher in that case.

  • benpaul12

    I think it just comes down to what those two locally funded shows are.

    The X-factor has proven to be a tired format that’s not bringing in the numbers and The Bachelor has a consistent, but low audience.

    I watched the Bachelor last night and it’s pretty abysmal, plus it seems quite a few people know who wins. Art has no chemistry with any of the girls, the girls are all mates so there isn’t any drama. In comparison with the US versions, NZ Bachelor is boring.

    OFH rated well because it is a nicer more wholesome show that the two TV3 offerings and that’s locally produced, along with all the dog and border security dramas…

  • Blair

    The thing is you are comparing Reality TV shows. I want to see New Zealanders on TV but I don’t want to see crap shows like XFactor, The Bachelor or MKR and none of these shows are our own products just a NZ version of an overseas show.
    The networks need to give us more quality NZ made shows like more documentaries and the sort of shows we lost when TVNZ 7 closed down. When I heard about the series “Our First Home” at first I thought it seemed quite interesting as I thought it might be a documentary series about families trying to buy their first home, instead it turned out to be just another show like The Block. A few years ago I was quite interested to watch the GC when I thought it was a show about NZers moving to Aussie and doing well, the show turned out to be rubbish.
    At work no one is talking what happened on a reality TV show last night, the talk is about the news or what shows are being downloaded from the State like how each person is getting their hands on the next episode of Game of Thrones.

    • benpaul12


      Decent shows seem to be too much of a gamble to make for the networks.

      The demise of terrestrial TV is slow and painful.

      I can’t imagine in a world with full streaming people would even watch crap like X-Factor.

      • Regan Cunliffe

        I think the talent show formats are a little tired now but that’s simply because there is a disconnect between the broadcast and post show successes. It’s a huge disappointment and lost opportunity but that’s what happens when all you’re interested in is the short term ratings success.

        • benpaul12

          Yeah exactly, the live shows are expensive to make, but the product placement and on-going engagement of fans make it cheap. It’s like a blockbuster movie!

    • Regan Cunliffe

      Of course I’m comparing reality shows. But in the same sense, local drama has rated poorly as well recently. One can only hope that this trend will be reversed for the Outrageous Fortune prequel Westside…