As The Challenge unveiled its 37th season of the MTV series, many fans were excited at the prospect of plenty of new competitors and some of the returning stars.
Trailers for the Spies, Lies & Allies season showed exciting new daily challenges, intense eliminations, showmances, hookups, and drama. Hopes were high that the new season would deliver and exceed what some felt was a poor previous season.
However, after three episodes of the show have aired, the ratings have been trending downward, with the third episode achieving the lowest ratings yet.
Now fans are reacting, giving their feedback on why those ratings are so low for MTV’s The Challenge Season 37.
The Challenge Episode 3 was fifth among cable telecasts
Based on a recent chart showing the top 50 original cable telecasts for ratings, MTV’s The Challenge: Spies, Lies & Allies Episode 3 came in fifth for the August 25th cable television lineup.
It achieved a 0.30 overall rating in the key 18-49 demographic with a 0.41 amongst female viewers and a low 0.18 amongst male viewers in the demographic.
Finishing ahead of Spies, Lies & Allies were Tucker Carlson Tonight on FOX News, American Horror Story on FX, and Real Housewives of Beverly Hills on Bravo. All Elite Wrestling (AEW) on TNT finished first amongst all cable programs for the night.
It’s worth noting that The Challenge achieved the second-highest ratings amongst the 18-49 females demographic, finishing behind RHOBH. In addition, American Horror Story was debuting their newest season on FX on August 25.
The Spies, Lies & Allies season started strong. According to Showbuzz Daily, the Season 37 premiere episode had 660,000 viewers and ranked first amongst all cable shows on Wednesday, August 11. It had a 0.38 rating for the overall 18-49 demographic, just edging Real Housewives (0.36).
The second episode of Spies, Lies, & Allies had 624,000 viewers and dropped to fifth-place amongst cable shows on August 18, 2021. Ahead of it were TNT’s All Elite Wrestling, Fox News’s Hannity and Tucker Carlson Tonight, and Bravo’s RHOBH.
The Challenge fans react to Season 37 ratings situation
There are many factors to consider regarding The Challenge’s low ratings for the latest season. Among them is the fact it’s going head-to-head with another popular reality show, Big Brother, which airs episodes on Wednesday on CBS.
In addition, recent world events involving Afghanistan and COVID-19 may have viewers watching the Fox News programs mentioned instead of The Challenge.
The previous MTV season seemed to be a ratings hit, but some people have accredited it due to the COVID-19 pandemic with lockdowns, shutdowns, and quarantines keeping people at home with not much else to watch for reality TV.
While the reason for the Season 37 slump is unclear, fans have their opinions and theories on why the season has achieved such low ratings. Many shared their thoughts in Twitter comments.
More than a few fans point out that the number of rookies on the show that they’re unfamiliar with could be part of the problem. As one Twitter user commented, they miss some of the show’s stars, including Johnny Bananas, Wes Bergmann, and Da’Vonne Rogers.
Another Challenge viewer suggested that there isn’t enough in the way of “in-house foolishness” to keep viewers entertained with Season 37. They pointed out a lack of “love triangles, hookups, and fights” like in earlier seasons.
There have been a few love triangles and hookups, with most of the spotlight on Nelson Thomas’ situation with castmates Ashley Mitchell and Berna Canbeldek. Fights haven’t erupted beyond castmates getting into verbal altercations about eliminations, though.
While more than a few Twitter comments brought up the lack of star power and the influx of many rookies, another said that the veteran alliance is “ruining it.”
Interestingly, the season’s format arrives after two seasons in which The Challenge featured a Skull twist. With that twist, host TJ Lavin informed competitors that they’d need to earn a Skull by going into elimination and winning it to qualify for the final.
With Season 37, veterans have no reason to go into elimination, and by forming a major alliance, they’ve basically been able to keep themselves safe while getting rid of the rookies.
It’s also worth mentioning one more aspect of the current season’s theme. With so many international competitors, there are different airings of The Challenge shown around the world.
With Spies, Lies & Allies, MTV is exposing a global audience to the competition show, which could equate to more fans worldwide, rather than just in the United States.
Time will tell if that helps the show progress in popularity or hinders the show’s success, but it could be a major step forward in its evolution.
The Challenge: Spies, Lies & Allies airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on MTV.