Its been a rocky week for Sony Entertainment Television (SET
), the flagship Hindi general entertainment channel (GEC) from Sony Pictures Network India (SPN)
. One of its weekday prime time fiction shows – Pehredar Piya Ki
, found itself banned after a public uproar on the theme and execution of the show. Around the same time, the headliner of its comedy chat show (The Kapil Sharma Show
), Kapil Sharma
took ill, causing the production of fresh episodes to halt, and forcing the channel to air re-runs of the show in that time slot instead.
The show is set to return once Sharma is back on his feet, but uncertainty around its future continues. “Kapil has taken a break due to his deteriorating health. Once he is physically fit, the show will be back. We have multiple shows as a back up in both reality/comedy space as well as big ticket fiction shows, but we are hoping to get Kapil fit soonest,” says Danish Khan, EVP and Business Head, Sony
However, things seem to be turning in the right direction for the channel with the return of Amitabh Bachchan
anchored Kaun Banega Crorepati
(KBC). The game show, which returned to television after a break of three years on August 28, has opened at the number two spot on the top shows in the urban market. While it does not find a place in the top 5 shows in the all India market or in the rural markets, planners point out that advertisers on SET are looking at the urban market, with focus on Mumbai and Delhi, where the show has done exceedingly well.
In fact, in the urban markets, SET has been in the top five consistently for the past few weeks. Khan clarifies that the fluctuation in the position has been “primarily because of the irregular telecast of Kapil shows (due to his health) and because in extraordinary conditions, we had to pull out one of our key fiction shows.”
As of week 35, 2017 (August 26 to September 1), SET is at number 3 in the urban viewership chart, behind topper Colors and second place holder Star Plus. KBC is the most viewed show after Colors’ Khatron Ke Khiladi. In the all India market, SET is at number 6, moving two spots up from last week’s number 8.
Khan is confident that the numbers will get even better in the coming weeks as the channel has a slew of launches and replacement shows slotted to go on air.