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TUF Ratings Hit All-Time Low as ‘Ultimate Fighter: Live’ Episode 5 Pulls in 947,000 Viewers

(If Kimbo couldn’t convince you to watch the show, there’s really no hope for any of us.)

According to a new report on MMAJunkie, the ratings for Friday’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter on FX were low enough to make it the lowest-rated episode in the entire 15-season run of the series, and represented a 27% drop from the season premiere last month. (Damn, and we were sure that the Chris Tickle gout-subplot would be a ratings juggernaut.) Here’s how the ratings have shaken out so far this season:

The Ultimate Fighter: Live episode 1: 1.3 million viewers
The Ultimate Fighter: Live episode 2: 1.1 million viewers
The Ultimate Fighter: Live episode 3: 1.2 million viewers
The Ultimate Fighter: Live episode 4: 1.1 million viewers
The Ultimate Fighter: Live episode 5: 947,000 viewers

Grain of salt time…

Obviously, this season’s installment of the show has aired on a different channel, on a different night, and in a different format than all the previous seasons, so it makes sense that the ratings numbers on Spike TV wouldn’t automatically carry over. For the record, FX and Spike are available in approximately the same number of homes.

While TUF fans could eventually re-discover the show on FX, the notorious Friday-night timeslot will be the biggest hurdle to overcome; the UFC’s target audience of young men generally doesn’t stay in and watch TV that night. Will we see a re-scheduling of the show if ratings continue to plummet?

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xxxrayrayray- April 11, 2012 at 10:16 pm
linzhanax- April 11, 2012 at 11:04 am ………………
natehuffman24- April 10, 2012 at 9:31 pm
me i haventr watched but less then 30 minutes of the first episode and havent watched any since i much rather watch bellator fighting and there tournaments,also if it was team W.Silva vs team Belfort live on fx i prob would watch it
sergdrtfh- April 10, 2012 at 8:27 pm

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mcw89138- April 10, 2012 at 4:10 pm
The entire concept of TUF has run its course. With so many leagues these days, talented up-and-comers don't need TUF to break into the UFC. To mix things up, they should do a season where the top twelve guys of a UFC weight class, including the current champion, live in a large house together and fight in a single-elimination tournament over the course of a summer to become the UFC champion. Could be a great way to boost interest in one of the new, lighter weight classes or even to crown a new champion for a division in which the current champion is injured or retiring.
UnloadMe- April 10, 2012 at 12:45 pm
Maybe if it wasnt on a friday night ratings would be better, you cant expect great ratings on friday night, most people have better things to do then sit at home watching tv all night just to see one fight between two guys who arent even in the UFC yet.
linzhanax- April 10, 2012 at 11:57 am ..
jiuff- April 10, 2012 at 11:44 am

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elburrogrande- April 10, 2012 at 10:59 am
tuf brasil= 12 million viewers. nuff said
linzhanax- April 10, 2012 at 10:18 am ......
TellaTruth- April 10, 2012 at 10:04 am
don't really like the format with john anik. Don't like the interviews. Could care less about house. Show me fights and training footage, what they worked on, drills, who is making noticeable improvements, are they simply sharpening the skills already there or are they actually trying to teach some new stuff or even change the fighters approach a bit?
O Chan- April 10, 2012 at 9:58 am
You should also consider that FX has seen a significant increase over their previous 6 week average. While the program itself isn't matching the same ratings it did on Spike, from a network point of view, TUF has increased their Friday night ratings which was one of their lowest rated nights (not just for the network, but for Cable in general).
As for the idea of moving the program to another night, that wouldn't make sense considering FX already has their originals and movies which bring in pretty good ratings and in the case of movies, very safe for advertisers to air in (as opposed to 1000 Ways To Die, which pretty much is near impossible to sell).
In my professional opinion, ratings will start to climb when viewers finally make the adjustment. I'm sure the show will have a few more "gimmicks" to try and attract new viewers, but as long as FX continues to see increases over their 6-week average, TUF will stay on Friday Nights.
jasonmoles- April 10, 2012 at 9:42 am
That Ben Askren is a powerful draw...
linzhanax- April 10, 2012 at 9:08 am
Kid Clam Curtains- April 10, 2012 at 8:40 am
I actually like the new format. Mostly because I DVR it and usually skip to the fight.
agentsmith- April 10, 2012 at 8:40 am
Keep in mind that this past Friday was a holiday, which could also explain the slightly lower numbers.
BossNasty- April 10, 2012 at 8:22 am
Hmmm...Friday night at 9, I think I'll watch a bunch of bull shit for 50 minutes just to catch a single fight. That, after watching Bellator fights that are actually exciting. One word for you all....Scarface! Not Tony Montana, but Houston TX's rapper Scarface. Never went mainstream to be successful and is one of the most successful rappers of all time. Changing the sport to fit in with mainstream is not necessarily a good idea. MMA was very popular and growing before Fox got in the mix and set the stage for a conformity overhaul.
Big Cunt-ry Nelson- April 10, 2012 at 7:56 am
I've seen every series of TUF in the uk and I honestly think that another reason for the ratings plummeting is due to the change in layout of the series. I despise the Jon Anik introduced fights and post fight interviews. I want to see more of the house and less of the media bull**** and a lot more swearing from Dana, it weirds me out when he strings a whole sentence together without at least 1 f**k.

A lot of my pals who have always watched TUF haven't seen beyond episode 2 of this series, I will continue to watch purely because i'll watch anything MMA but it's let me down compared to previous seasons.
Sho Nuff- April 10, 2012 at 7:50 am
Ahh Friday night, where shows on Fox channels go to die. TUF, Fringe, Firefly...
angry little feet- April 10, 2012 at 10:35 am
I miss Fringe :(
ExpectJesusBro- April 10, 2012 at 7:48 am
CHEERS! hitekredneck. I DVR it for that exact reason. who wants to sit home on a friday night for that.
Shifty-Eyed Dog- April 10, 2012 at 7:32 am
I've been recording it and watching it at a more convenient time. But to be honest, salready twice so far I've decided instead to just read a quick recap to see who won.
amsterdamheavy- April 10, 2012 at 7:30 am
10pm Friday night is a shit spot - historically, Friday night time slots are "death slots" for TV shows. Combine that with a channel change as well and this is no surprise.

hitekredneck- April 10, 2012 at 7:19 am
tbh, i think a lot of it is due to the timeslot....i ain't stayin up til 11 to go thru 30 minutes of drama, 20 minutes of commercials and 10 minutes of fight.
Fletch the V Stretch- April 10, 2012 at 7:36 am
Spot on.