Have you ever watched Fear Factor? Well, there’s a chance that you might be a big fan of the show. If that’s the case, then you may be wondering, why was Fear Factor canceled?
This blog will talk about Fear Factor and the reason behind its cancellation. So let’s jump straight into it.
Why Was Fear Factor Canceled?
But have you ever wondered why this show was canceled in the first place? Low ratings are one of the reasons behind the show’s cancellation.
Fear Factor – A Brief Introduction
Fear Factor is an American show, first aired in 2001, June 11 on the NBC channel. The show’s theme was very simple – contestants were to complete 3 jaw-dropping stunts.
The winner was given $50,000 as a reward. Those who couldn’t complete the stunt were to face elimination.
All the challenges were designed to check players’ mental and physical endurance. From leaping between two tall buildings to sitting inside tear gas chambers, competitors have gone through extreme experiences.
But don’t have to worry as experts were always there to assist with the stunts.
In each episode, there were gross-out challenges that generally involved eating weird items. For example, viewers cringed as contestants ate maggots, sheep eyeballs, and live spiders to win $50,000.
For the producers, the idea behind the show was to outperform CBS’s Survivor’s success. Surprisingly, at certain levels, the Fear factor outranked Survivor too.
The show was a big hit in its 1st season. Fear Factor was the most viewed show among viewers of the age group 18-49.
The original concept of the show was known as “Now or Neverland.” It was first aired in the Netherlands. However, countless versions aired globally because of its success in the United States.
Joe Rogan’s Fight – Incident that Affected Show’s Image
Initially, Joe Rogan was the host of the Fear Factor. He was famous as a UFC commentator and for his role in News Radio. The host revealed his apprehension about the Fear Factor gig in an interview.
“It was bizarre for me being there, being the host of it, as it was for anyone to watch it,” says Rogan. “Ninety percent of the time, I would show up at work, and I’d be shaking my head going, ‘I can’t believe this is a real show.’
At first, he did not think that the Fear Factor would become popular. Rogal thought it might run only for a few episodes. He also remarked, “I thought it was something completely ridiculous. I’m like, There’s no way this is going to stay on television. Then, 148 episodes later….”
Perhaps the host’s guts were correct. In a special edition of the show, which featured reality television stars, Rogal got into a fight with a contestant.
It all started when Victoria Fuller punched Jonny Fairplay in the stomach. The host tried reprimanding her, saying, “Hey, hey, hey—what are you doing?”. “You can’t assault people… it’s called strategy, he’s yelling. You can’t run up to him and hit him.”
To Rogen’s response, Jonathan Baker tried putting his hands on Rogan. Jonathan Baker is the husband and teammate of Victoria Fuller. “The guy got in my face,” Rogan shares about the situation, years later on one of the episodes of ‘The Joe Rogan Experience.’
“I thought he was gonna hit me! I didn’t hurt him—I was thinking of choking him. But I was like, I better not choke him. Because if I choke him, you know, maybe they could sue me,” said Rogen during the show. The fight was a push towards the show’s cancellation.
Poor Ratings – Reason Why Fear Factor Got Canceled in the First Place
Despite being a trending and popular show, in 2006, NBC took off Fear Factor. With each season, the show’s ratings experienced a steady decline.
Although the ratings were higher than Survivor, it just couldn’t surpass American Idol.
Many people also blame the overexposure for the show’s cancellation. The show ran its premiere episodes concurrently while running the old seasons in the syndication.
But it doesn’t matter if the ratings were low. Fear Factor was still able to earn $600 million as their ad revenue reportedly. It was the show’s earning in the first six seasons, despite fallen ratings.
The only issue was that most viewers were shocked by the stunts. As a result, viewers did not necessarily try replaying the episodes again.
That’s why the 1st season’s DVD copies had really poor sales. This led NBC to cancel their plans for releasing the whole series in the DVD format.
Why was the Fear Factor show called off?
The fear factor was first called due to poor viewer ratings. But in 2011, the show came back and got canceled again because of a revolting stunt.
Has anyone ever died on the show?
Fortunately, no one has ever died on the spot in the show. However, many have got hurt seriously while performing the stunts.
What are the worst stunts performed on the Fear Factor?
Here are some of the worst stunts that have been conducted on the show –
- Eating a rat which is blended thin
- Shoveling a roadkill animal and then eating it
- Drinking the liquid present inside cow eyes
- Dipping head in a container filled with 50 gallons of cow blood
- Milking the goat with the mouth
- Eating intestines of animals
- Eating horse’s rectum
Do the participants get money for performing the stunts?
Yes, the contestants get a reward, however indirectly. The show pits the participants against each other for a grand prize of $50,000
The fear factor was canceled due to poor viewer ratings. If you miss the show, you can always watch the old episodes on YouTube.
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