Survivor repeats are going directly to cable.
Comcast's Outdoor Life Network has bought exclusive syndication rights to the first 10 seasons of Mark Burnett's CBS reality hit, Survivor, from King World.
OLN will launch the first-season repeats July 24 following its coverage of Lance Armstrong's last ride in the Tour de France.
The deal, struck with King World, is for the 160 episodes of the first 10 installments, plus an option on seasons this season and next.
OLN will use its biggest programming deal ever to promote original-program launches, as well as package the shows into themes, i.e. "Most Villanous Characters." (as well as running them in order).
How well reality shows will do in syndication has been a big question given that the winners have all been revealed for the contest-type shows.
Fear Factor as the first big reality hit to debut in syndiation (last September) and was being looked at as a benchmark for reality show repeatability. It has been a factor, but not one necessarily striking fear in the hearts of the competition.
Of the four rookie off-net strips, Fear Factor at a 1.8 season-to-date national Nielsen rating is beating one show, Girlfriends, and is tied with Yes, Dear for second behind Malcolm in the Middle.