‘Chicago Fire’ Hits Season Low While ‘Survivor’ Also Dips in Ratings

by Kati Michelle

We know our Outsiders are pretty dang smart, so you probably could have guessed this headline was coming given all the other “misses” from the past few weeks. Between cast changes and shocking exits, TV showrunners are just not giving the people what they want. The thing is, die-hard fans are vocalizing their woes and the TV shows (like “Chicago Fire” and “Survivor”) are starting to pay the ultimate price with dips in their ratings.

NCIS” fans are still feeling the sting after Gary Cole’s Alden Parker seemingly replaced Mark Harmon’s Gibbs overnight. Around the same time, “Chicago Fire” lost Jesse Spencer, bringing back memories of other painful exits like that of Steven R. McQueen and Miranda Rae Mayo (though she will be back!). Then in the world of “Survivor,” Sydney Segal made a shocking exit after the executive producers gave one contestant the power to completely change the trajectory of the remaining season. Unsurprisingly, Segal’s statement post-exit was one of profanity and anger.

So, where do they stand in terms of their historical numbers?

Do The ‘Chicago Fire’ and ‘Survivor’ Ratings Paint a Bleak Future?

Officially, the most recent live viewership numbers continued to show the same steady decline we’ve seen all year. With the latest episode drop, “Survivor” drew in a little over 5 million live viewers. On the other hand, “Chicago Fire” drew in just above 6 million live viewers. As stated in the headline, this marked a season-low for the latter, but it didn’t look too good for the former either.

“Survivor” used to be considered top-of-the-line entertainment, at least in the world of reality TV. In fact, it made the Time magazine list in 2007 for one of the top 100 greatest TV shows of all time. It kept that trajectory up to 2013 when TV Guide also recognized the show as #39 on a list of the 60 best series of all time. “Chicago Fire” also drew in similar accolades with the ASCAP award for a top television series in 2013.

Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean the shows are both doomed and set to be cancelled tomorrow. We’re not nearly close to that level of doom and gloom quite yet. The numbers might be a little off given the number of people that record the shows live to watch later.

So, How Important Are TV Ratings?

Well, according to How Stuff Works, TV ratings are the de facto national measurement service for most of the entertainment industry, at least in the world of television series. They’ve been in place since the ’50s when TVs became much more widely accessible. However, at the end of the day, they’re still not an end-all-be-all.

Here’s a quick breakdown you might find informative and useful: