Survivor ratings up, Amazing Race down, Undercover Boss Hooters ep outperforms both

CBS found success with two of its trio of reality shows, with one of its two veteran shows improving and the other slipping, and its newest show performing better than either one, even against the Olympics.

Survivor Heroes vs. Villainstwo-hour premiere last Thursday gave the show “its largest audience since 2007,” CBS said in a press release, as it was watched by 14.15 million viewers, and placed first among viewers 18 to 49. That’s up 25 percent in adults 18 to 49, and an increase of 2.47 million viewers over the premiere of Survivor Samoa, and 520,000 more viewers than the premiere of Survivor Tocantins a year ago.

On Sunday night, The Amazing Race 16‘s dummy-filled first episode had 9.1 million viewers, down again from the 9.42 million who watched season 14’s premiere a year ago.

Finally, the second episode of Undercover Boss, on which the CEO of Hooters unbelievably (or disingenuously) expressed shock that one of its managers was treating women like objects and people on the street thought his restaurant is degrading to women and not family-friendly despite having a corporate logo with breasts in it, did well despite not having the Super Bowl as a lead-in. In fact, it performed much better than The Amazing Race: 15.28 million people watched.

TV By the Numbers notes that “ABC did not have a typical lineup and didn’t air Desperate Housewives at 9pm, but, Boss came in second place to NBC between 9p-10p with both adults 18-49 and total viewers, and outside of the Olympics it was the highest-rated hour of the night.”

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.