CBS’s ‘Hunted’: Little hope of sustaining its big bow
It's premiering behind the AFC championship, which will lift it initially
January 20, 2017
One in a series of Media Life previews of the new shows debuting at midseason. You can find past previews here.
Wednesdays at 8 p.m.; special premiere Sunday after the AFC championship game
Is it possible to disappear forever in today’s digital world? “Hunter” aims to find out.
Nine teams of two regular people become fugitives on the run, trying to elude professional investigators and former military in a 100,000-square-foot area for 28 days. The winning team receives $250,000.
The program is based on the Channel 4 hit in the UK.
This high-intensity show should draw huge numbers behind the AFC championship, which will draw more than 40 million. “Hunted” will undoubtedly post CBS’s best premiere numbers for a new show this season.
Just because a program launches big doesn’t mean those numbers will sustain, though.
Fox’s “The Mick” had the best bow for any comedy this season following an NFL game earlier this month, but when it moved to its regular Tuesday slot, those viewers didn’t follow.
Another problem: “Hunted” is getting relatively little buzz.
The program is probably little more than a short-term placefiller that won’t return next season.
What media people say
Buyers say the show may be too high-concept to succeed.
“‘Hunted’ seems like the next logical step after ‘Survivor’ and ‘Amazing Race.’ The issue will be if it is too technical and difficult to follow along with from home. It will certainly have a strong platform in which to launch and it will air in ‘Survivor’s’ time period – which also makes sense,” says Tracie Chinetti, managing director for media at Fuseideas in Boston.
“The ads might be controversial – and turn people off. We saw an ad in a group setting and the response was, ‘is that a real thing?’”
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