Question: I'm kind of glad to hear that The Amazing Race won't be back until mid-season, as much as I love it. I hope that means they can spend more time casting quality, dynamic, interesting teams. My thought, however, is that they should do the same with Survivor, which is getting stale in its old age. (I have my own ideas on how to spice up the show, but that's not for this column.) What's keeping CBS from rotating the two on Thursday nights — Race's smaller audience?
Answer: You answered your own question. While Survivor isn't quite the powerhouse it used to be, with its novelty fading by the cycle, it is still a big audience draw, bigger than Race for sure. And the stakes are so high on Thursdays (witness CBS returning Without a Trace to finish out the night) that CBS isn't going to mess with the current formula until it is forced to. For now, Survivor is still giving CBS a powerful start to Thursdays. When something comes along to upstage it, CBS will have to start scrambling. Nothing lasts forever.