A reality competition that challenges contestants to do some scary and disgusting stunts, Fear Factor initially ran for six seasons and 144 episodes on the peacock network, from 2001 until 2006.
The show was revived this season and performed well for the network, averaging a 2.4 rating in the 18-49 demographic with 6.08 million total viewers. It was usually either the first or second highest-rated show in its timeslot.
Until The Voice returned, Fear Factor was the highest-rated non-scripted series on the network. As we wrap up the season, it’s the third highest-rated show on NBC, beaten only by The Voice and The Office.
There was some controversy surrounding the sixth episode, titled “Hee Haw! Hee Haw!”, and featured a stunt that required contestants to drink donkey urine and semen. It was initially scheduled for January 30th but the network ultimately pulled it and ran a repeat instead.
The last original episode ran on February 12th, supposedly leaving three episodes unaired (including the donkey one). The show was expected to return to the schedule later in the season but it never did.
Though Fear Factor is one of NBC’s highest-rated shows, the network has cancelled it. It’s hard to say why, unless, despite the ratings, the show was a tough sell to advertisers. It certainly wasn’t helping NBC’s image.
What do you think? Are you sorry that Fear Factor’s been cancelled again? Do you think the donkey episode was the cause?