‘Sarah Palin’s Alaska’ loses nearly half its audience in second week

By David Edwards
Tuesday, November 23, 2010 14:08 EDT
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Sarah Palin is having trouble keeping the interest of her fans.

In its second week, Palin’s reality show lost 40 percent of its audience.

With almost five million viewers, the first episode of Sarah Palin’s Alaska became TLC’s most watched debut ever.

But the show’s second episode attracted only 3 million viewers.

With viewers 18-49, the drop was even greater. Only 885,000 viewers in the key demo tuned in, a drop of 44 percent from the prior week.

“In fact, the median age of the show is 57 — that’s 15 years older than TLC’s average,” The Hollywood Reporter observed.

The show follows Palin and her family through a series of wholesome activities including bear-watching and cupcake baking but some see it as an eight-part campaign ad.

Palin was criticized for the encounter with bears seen in the first episode.

“It’s clear from the video that she violated the [wildlife] guidelines” of Wolverine Creek by getting to close to the bears, the director of the Alaska Wildlife Alliance told Newser.

Karl Rove told the British newspaper Telegraph last month that the new show doesn’t help her 2012 chances.

“With all due candor, appearing on your own reality show on the Discovery Channel, I am not certain how that fits in the American calculus of ‘that helps me see you in the Oval Office,’” Rove said.

“There are high standards that the American people have for it [the presidency] and they require a certain level of gravitas, and they want to look at the candidate and say ‘that candidate is doing things that gives me confidence that they are up to the most demanding job in the world,’” he said.

“You know, I agree with that,” Palin shot back the following Sunday. “That those standards have to be high for someone who would ever want to run for president like, um, wasn’t Ronald Reagan an actor? Wasn’t he in Bedtimes for Bonzo, bozo or something? Ronald Reagan was an actor.”

And the former Alaska governor insisted her new show was a documentary instead of a reality show.

“Now look. I’m not in a reality show. I have eight episodes documenting Alaska’s resources, what it is that we can contribute to the rest of U.S. to economically and physically secure our union, and my family comes along for the ride because I am family, family is us, and my family comes along on the ride to document these eight episodes for The Learning Channel. … So Karl is wrong right there in calling it a reality show,” she said.

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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