Variety reports that the "Survivor" ratings torch is still burning brightly, as the fifth edition of the reality adventure series drummed up big ratings for CBS on Thursday.
Airing opposite mostly repeats on the other networks but during a relatively low-viewing time of year, "Survivor: Thailand" (8-10:06 p.m.) wrapped before an average of 24.08 million viewers and generated a 9.9 rating/26 share among adults 18-49, according to Nielsen. Last May's finale of "Survivor: Marquesas" drew 25.9 million viewers and a 10.4/23 in the key demo.
Ratings for the finales of "Survivor" have generally been drifting downward since the original edition commanded whopping numbers in the summer of 2000, but the series remains remarkably resilient. Before its finale, it ranked sixth among all primetime series in adults 18-49 and fourth in total viewers.
The "Survivor" reunion show that followed (10:06-11 p.m.) also did very well, averaging a 9.2/24 in adults 18-49 and 20.43 million viewers overall. Hosted this time by "Survivor" frontman Jeff Probst, the special retained 93% of the finale's 18-49 lead-in -- the best performance ever for the postgame show relative to the finale. CBS topped its combined major-network rivals on the night in adults 18-49 (9.7/26 to 8.5/22).