Angry Boys - funny or not

Thousands of Hunter viewers have turned off Chris Lilley’s Angry Boys. What do you think is driving them away - the timeslot or the trash talk?

Halfway through its 12-episode run, Lilley’s follow-up to his hit comedies Summer Heights High and We Can Be Heroes has shed more than two-thirds of its Hunter audience.

Two State of Origin rugby league telecasts haven’t helped the controversial satire retain its hold on Wednesday night viewers.

The show debuted on ABC1 on May 11 and won its timeslot in Newcastle with 62,000 viewers, 25per cent of the audience, watching TV at 9pm. It was the second-most-watched program on the night.

But while some critics and hardcore Lilley fans have praised his caustic, social-realist character studies, Hunter viewers appear to be increasingly turned off by the show’s frequent coarse language, scatalogical and sexual references and lack of laughs.

The half-hour program hasn’t won its timeslot since its first week and, up against last week’s Origin clash, Angry Boys had barely 14,000 viewers in the region – fewer than an asteroid documentary being repeated on SBS at the same time.

Nationally, the Angry Boys audience has slumped from a high of 1.37million on debut to just 569,000 last week, though episodes regularly draw more than 100,000 views on the ABC’s online catch-up service, iView.

Angry Boys began recently on BBC3 in the UK but an air date has not been set for US cable network HBO, which co-financed the series.

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