So what did you watch on TV last night?

If you’re a fan of quality TV, chances are you felt pretty overwhelmed by all the different shows on offer…

Over on AMC we had The Killing at 9pm, followed by Mad Men at 10. HBO countered with Game Of Thrones at 9 and the opening episode of the acclaimed Girls at 10.30 (BTW am I the only person who thinks Girls has been massively over-hyped?). Meanwhile Showtime had new episodes of Nurse Jackie and The Borgias. Anyone else’s DVR having trouble keeping up with this lot?

Thankfully HBO and Showtime repeat their shows endlessly so it’s not too tricky to catch any of the above shows an hour or two later on the same night. But I can’t be the only person thinking it isn’t a smart idea to launch so many good shows on the same night of the week? I mean there are 6 other evenings to choose from!

The biggest casualty of this Sunday Smackdown so far appears to be The Killing, AMC’s murder mystery that infuriated viewers last season by refusing to reveal who killed Rosie Larsen. Season 2 returned from its break down 33% in total viewers – a move widely attributed to this last minute switch and bait. But I wonder if the fact that the show is airing opposite the booming Game Of Thrones may also be a key factor in The Killing’s decline.

To be fair I also think the decision to begin the new season of The Killing with a 2-hour special was not a smart one – who wants to sit through 2 hours of rain and gloom? Plus I think The Killing FEELS like a 10pm show. Mad Men is lighter and more accessible and should be airing at 9pm instead – save the dark stuff for last I say. But when it comes to ad campaigns let’s be honest – Game Of Thrones absolutely thrashed The Killing. I’m not at all surprised by their respective ratings.

This Sunday Night Smackdown has also not been good for The Borgias either, which returned with just 600,000 viewers, the show’s lowest audience to date. The Borgias airs at 10, so it’s up against a resurgent Mad Men – ouch! I was a fan of the first season of Showtime’s religious soap opera but if I had a choice of which show to watch live I’d plump for Mad Men every time. Again – what were Showtime thinking? The Borgias is both very expensive and targets the same audience as Mad Men – smart, urban, high-income households. Didn’t anyone see this coming?

Sure HBO and Showtime are less ratings dependent than other networks but at the end of the day the final numbers do count. And while Mad Men had been off our screens for far too long and HAD to return, surely it might have been better to wait before bringing The Killing back – or even premiere the second season a little earlier to get the jump on its competition.

Who knows what goes on in the heads of network schedulers! But one thing’s for sure – my DVR sure is in overload on Sunday nights now! Thank goodness the broadcast networks have largely thrown in the towel on Sunday nights this season – seriously Celebrity Apprentice?

But what about you? What do you watch live – and what do you record? And do you think there are too many shows now airing on this key night of the week? Comment away.