After a year of dismal ratings, Channel 10 executives are weighing up how to salvage The Bachelor and breathe new life back into the once-successful franchise.
Beverley McGarvey from ViacomCBS ANZ, which owns the network, said despite a year of ratings hits like I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here!, Amazing Race, and Australian Survivor, changes need to be made to the dating show.
"The thing we need to do a lot of work on next year is around The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. We're very happy with Celebrity MasterChef and very happy with The Dog House at the back of the year. So now we need to go "what do we do with Bachelor? Can we get it back to its glory days?" she told Media Week.
"Often with those legacy formats, there are pivots that you can make, there are things that you can do, and shows like MasterChef and The Block that have been on the air for more than a decade prove that a format can go for a long time when you carefully manage it, and sometimes it's cyclical."
Beverly added that there a "few shows" that aired toward the end of this year that "need a bit of attention".
"I will be an optimistic person here and say we need to fix some things but also it makes room in our schedule for new shows and you need new shows coming into the schedule," she said.
The Bachelor and The Bachelorette aired on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7.30pm, but Beverly said Channel 10 plans to still invest in that time slot, rather than move the franchise to higher ratings nights like Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.
"We don't consider Wednesday 7:30pm any less important than Monday at 7:30pm for example. We need to make sure that we can offer our clients consistent audiences across the board and across the week," she said.
"Those nights are very important to us. Earlier in the year, shows like MasterChef aired up until Thursday, so we do think those nights are important. We have commissioned a few things next year that will play later in the week."
Last Thursday's finale pulled in the smallest audience on record, with just 439,000 metro viewers for the final 15 minutes, and just 361,000 tuning in for the lead-up.
The premiere night pulled in the lowest audience in history, attracting just 397,000 viewers (5-city metro), while Nine's The Block raked in 851,000 viewers.
Last year's season, which saw sisters Elly and Becky Miles vie for love, the finale ranked slightly better, but still only had 573,000 metro viewers tuning in for the finale.
By comparison, the 2019 Bachelorette finale, featuring Angie Kent, drew a whopping 992,000 metro viewers.
Meanwhile, this year's season of The Bachelor, starring Jimmy Nicholson, was also a ratings flop. The July premiere drew in a bleak 482,000 viewers from metro cities across Australia.
It still performed better than its Bachelorette counterpart though, pulling in 629,000 metro viewers for the finale. However, this was still down from 879,000 viewers for Locky Gilbert's season finale in 2020.
- PuzzlesThe Australian Women's Weekly February Issue Online Entry
Prizes To LoveToday 12:00am