Survivor has its lowest-rated episode ever against Idol, which had 2x the viewers

The showdown between American Idol and Survivor seems to have impacted both series negatively, though the Fox singing competition easily beat the CBS reality competition with about twice the number of viewers. Survivor, though, was the real loser: its truly awesome opening episode had fewer viewers than any other regular broadcast in its history.

Among critical viewers ages 18 to 49, Survivor Redemption Island had 29 percent fewer viewers than last spring’s all-star season debut, while Idol dropped 21 percent to a comparative episode last spring, according to TV By the Numbers, which says Survivor had “its lowest rated regular episode ever.”

Overall, an average of 11.168 million people watched the best first episode Tribal Council ever, and 20.696 million were bored by the Hollywood round’s manufactured drama. Remember that CBS effectively brought this on themselves by changing their schedule, which prompted Fox to move Idol.

The scary part about this is that they obviously brought Rob and Russell back to be ratings draws. And something tells me the way networks and producers think sometimes, the low ratings are not going to be blamed on Rob and Russell fatigue, but if the show is renewed, it will lead to even more gimmicks to try to inflate ratings.

Review: Married at First Sight

Marriage At First Sight

In an era of Tinder and Grindr, instant acceptance or dismissal of a potential partner, or instant sex with another body, Married at First Sight offers the thrill of watching strangers deal with the very basics of relationships.

Beyond the headline-grabbing premise, the series has turned out to be a stripped-down, authentic exploration of something very interesting. Read the full review.

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.