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CBS' 'Survivor' still has life; Fox's 'Past Life' needs one

February 12, 2010 | 11:31 am

SURVIVOR

CBS' latest version of "Survivor" showed that one of broadcast television's first big reality hits still has life after almost 10 years on the air. Last night's two-hour premiere averaged 14.2 million viewers and a 4.5 rating in adults 18-49. Each rating point in that demographic equals 1.3 million viewers. The show was up 5% in that category compared to a year ago.

The big numbers for "Survivor" were enough to drive CBS to a Thursday night win in viewers and demographics. "Survivor" even beat ABC's "Grey's Anatomy" in 18-49, no small feat. At 10 p.m., CBS' "The Mentalist" averaged 15.7 million viewers and a 3.6 rating in 18-49.

Also bitten by the the return of "Survivor" was the CW's "The Vampire Diaries," which saw its audience fall to 3.5 million from 4 million last week and a drop among women 18-34 as well.

Fox's "Past Life" made its time period premiere, but the numbers won't exactly boost confidence in the show. Though it probably didn't help that a rerun of "Bones" -- which got 8 million viewers and a 2.3 rating in adults 18-49, was its lead-in -- "Past Life" averaged just 5.3 million viewers and finished fourth in 18-49 with a 1.4 rating. "Past Life" will get a chance at attracting a bigger audience in two weeks when Fox adds a third night of "American Idol" to Thursday for elimination shows.

Overall, CBS won the night with 14.7 million viewers and a 4.2 in 18-49. ABC followed with 9.1 million viewers and a 3.0 in 18-49. Fox averaged 6.7 million viewers and a 1.8 in 18-49 while NBC averaged 5 million viewers and a 2.4 in 18-49.

An observation: There is something a tad depressing that only one network was able to crack the 10 million viewer mark on what is traditionally one of the most-watched nights of television and we're in the middle of February sweeps. Yeah, yeah, I know, it's a different world.

--  Joe Flint


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