EXCLUSIVE: MTV2, MTV’s sibling network, is moving ahead with Numbnuts, a new reality program from Fear Factor executive producer David A. Hurwitz. Described as a “high-octane, hilarious, adrenaline-fueled stunt competition game-show series,” Numbnuts will premiere this Friday at 10 PM, immediately following the seventh-season seven premiere of the Bellator Fighting Championships. Hosted by Jeff Dye (Last Comic Standing), Numbnuts pits Internet contestants’ stunt mishaps against three web-celebrity Stunt Masters — Crazy Mike, The Horse and Victor Lopez — as the teams battle it out to see who can better perform steroid-injected versions of the stunts.
RATINGS RAT RACE: ‘Bachelorette’ Hits Low, ‘American Ninja Warrior’ Up Big, ‘Fear Factor’ & ‘MasterChef’ Rise
The Bachelorette (2.2/6) had its tell-all episode last night with the guys who didn’t make Emily Maynard’s cut. The show was down 12% from last week and tied a season low (with the exception of specials). Still, last night’s episode – the last before July 22’s finale — was Monday’s most-watched show with more than 7 million viewers. Meanwhile, the fifth week of The Glass House (1.0/3) was flat with last week and tied a season low. ABC won the night in viewers and Fox won in adults 18-49.
NBC’s once high-flying reboot of Fear Factor will make a humble exit as a regular series tonight with a rerun replacing an episode pulled by the network amidst controversy. The episode, Hee Haw! Hee Haw!, would’ve probably made it to air had it not been for NBC hosting a GOP presidential debate. The Fear Factor episode, originally slated for January 23, was pre-empted for the debate and moved to January 30. Then last Thursday, January 26, TMZ posted a story about a stunt in the episode described in the NBC synopsis as one where “the teams put themselves to the test eating the unimaginable.” According to TMZ, the unimaginable was donkey semen and urine. Controversy ensued, and late Friday night, NBC sent out a scheduling advisory listing another episode, which originally aired January 2, as replacing Hee Haw! NBC entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt today addressed the controversy with a statement: “I reviewed the episode late last week and decided it was a segment we should not air.”
Viewers still love ‘em worms and cockroaches. After a five-year break, NBC’s Fear Factor returned to the schedule last night with ratings the likes of which NBC has not seen in a long while. The gross-out reality series premiered with back-to-back episodes averaging a 3.1 rating/8 share in adults 18-49 (8.7 million total viewers) at 8 PM and a 3.5/8 (8.5 million) at 9 PM. Both hours posted season highs in their time slots, outperforming NBC’s 18-49 season averages by 88% and 106%, respectively. Fear Factor, back with its original producing team and host Joe Rogan, helped struggling newsmagazine Rock Center With Brian Williams (1.1/3, 4 million), which was up 22% from last week to match its series high in 18-49. NBC (2.6/7, 7 million for the night), always dead last on Mondays this fall, finished a competitive second behind CBS (3.6/9, 12 million).