Real Gilligan’s Island Off to Strong Start

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TBS’ new reality series had a promising premiere. The Real Gilligan’s Island debuted Nov. 30, with back-to-back episodes at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. attracting 4.029 million and 3.683 million total viewers, respectively, according to Nielsen Media Research.

In its time period, episode one was ad-supported cable’s No. 1 program in total viewers and outperformed broadcast networks Fox and UPN with adults 18-49 and NBC, Fox, UPN and The WB with men 18-49.

The show, in which two sets of castaways are challenged to find their way off an island à la the original sitcom, currently airs Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 8 p.m.

The show is executive-produced by Mike Fleiss (The Bachelor) and father/son team Sherwood Schwartz (the creator of the original Gilligan’s Island) and Lloyd J. Schwartz. It is part of TBS’ strategic branding campaign to orient itself as a network for funny fare. In June, the network took on the slogan “very funny.” Among its comedy fare are Sex and the City, Everybody Loves Raymond and Family Guy.