Cult adult cartoon shows Family Guy, American Dad and The Cleveland Show have helped catapult the TV3-owned channel 3e ahead of state-run Irish language station TG4 to become the fourth most watched Irish station, according to new figures.
This year, 3e has seen its share of adult viewers aged 15 or over leap by 38 per cent, with its audience of adults aged between 15 to 34 rising by 7 per cent between January and September this year.
3e is now the number one channel outside the traditional terrestrial stations, having a chunkier share of viewing than Sky1, E4, Sky Living and the 200 or so other digital channels.
The TV3 sister channel has a monthly reach of 2,933,200, which has been continuously growing, particularly since the digital switchover in October. Other ratings hits for the channel include The Graham Norton Show, UEFA Europa League, The Big Bang Theory, Modern Family, The Middle and Conan.
Weakness in the television ad market coupled with the increasing use of Netflix and other on-demand services has hit the domestic television sector hard.
Last week, the Sunday Independent revealed that more than half – 52 per cent – of all RTE TV shows broadcast this year were repeats. This was up from 48 per cent last year.
However, Ireland trails some of its international peers when it comes to repeats, with the BBC serving up more than 60 per cent of repeats on its channels in 2011.