Cape Town – To try and lift ratings e.tv will switch the timeslots of its telenovela Broken Vows and its prime time TV news bulletin eNews Direct.
As part of the red letter channel's acquisition of Days of Our Lives, e.tv is doing a major retooling of its prime-time schedule from September with Days' placement at 17:30.
While music show Club 808 on Fridays is strangely shipped off to the earlier 16:30 timeslot from Friday 8 September when its target audience won't be home to watch it, e.tv is also switching around Broken Vows and eNews Direct – both struggling in the ratings – by giving them the other show’s timeslot.
From Monday 4 September the telenovela Broken Vows produced by Clive Morris Productions will move from 20:00 to 18:30 where it will have to compete head-to-head with the 6th season of SABC1's hugely successful Skeem Saam youth drama.
The eNews Direct at 18:30 will be moved to 20:00 opposite SABC1's super-soap Generations - The Legacy.
Skeem Saam and Generations command a ratings share of respectively 61% and 68.2%. It means that during their timeslots, more than two-thirds of all South African TV sets that are turned on, are tuned to these shows.
What it means it that it will likely be very difficult for e.tv's Broken Vows and for eNews Direct in their switcheroo-timeslots to find a sizeable enough audience, although they haven't been doing well where they've been currently scheduled either.
Days of Our Lives is now going to serve as the lead-in to an e.tv superblock of soap, with Broken Vows at 18:30, Rhythm City at 19:00 and Scandal at 19:30.
It remains to be seen whether e.tv viewers can stay put for a marathon 2 and a half hours of soap television during early prime time as working class families with dueling priorities rush home and battle to bath and to put food on the table in time for dinner.