My three must-watch broadcast reality competition shows are all on CBS: Survivor, The Amazing Race, and most recently Phil Keoghan’s Tough As Nails.
While the show filmed its fifth season in Canada last summer, there was no sense of when it would actually premiere.
I suspected CBS might hold it until this fall, if not later; the gap between filming and airing of season four was more than one year.
Today, CBS finally revealed when Tough As Nails 5 will be on TV: this summer, starting in early July.
And the show is also getting an abbreviated schedule that will burn through the entire season in just one month.
CBS’s press release today said “CBS adds Tough As Nails to its summer reality schedule.”
Then comes the really strange/shocking/sad part: “with airings twice a week.”
Is this CBS burning off a show they’re done with? Or is it CBS giving a show they love something closer to a binge-watch release so fans can watch the whole season faster?
I’m old-fashioned and appreciate a once-a-week watch. That’s especially true for a show like Tough As Nails, which keeps its full cast for the entire season, even though someone is eliminated from the individual competition each episode.
When Tough As Nails season 5 will premiere
Tough As Nails 5 will premiere on July 2, over the long holiday weekend in the U.S, and will have its usual two-hour premiere.
After that, it will move to its regular schedule: Sundays at 8 and Fridays at 8.
With just 10 episodes per season—four of which are typically paired together, two for the premiere and two for the finale—that means Tough As Nails season five will air over just one month.
On Aug. 4, Secret Celebrity Renovation will take over the Friday at 8 timeslot, and Aug. 6, Big Brother 25 will take over the Sunday at 8 timeslot.
What that does, though, is clear Tough As Nails out of the way for Big Brother, which will premiere in early August, a later start than usual.
In a video about the scheduling announcement, host and co-creator Phil Keoghan says he’s “super-excited, because for the first time, we’ve left Los Angeles, we’re going to Canada—and we let Canadians compete.”
I am excited about that, and not that CBS
I’m somewhat baffled by this choice, if only because the ongoing WGA strike and possible SAG-AFTRA strike is already affecting productions, and there’s unlikely to be a lot of new scripted content this fall.
CBS has already extended The Amazing Race and Survivor episodes to 90 minutes each, so just those two shows will fill its three-hour prime-time block every Wednesday. Why not save Tough As Nails for a likely vacancy?