In case you thought you were going to get rid of "sharks are hot" trend pieces following the reign of Sharknado, think again: Deadline's Lisa de Moraes reports that Discovery's (fake) Shark Week kick-off documentary Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives had nearly 5 million viewers, a record for the 26-year-old Shark Week programming event.
Now, de Moraes notes that the success of the "documentary" was not without controversy, with viewers angry that, no, the prehistoric Megalodon shark is not in fact roaming the seas. One person commented on the Shark Week Facebook page: "When did Shark Week turn into a SyFy channel movie?" Well, that would be a good point, if it wasn't selling Discovery short when it comes to the ratings game. Only a little more than 1 million tuned into the first airing of Sharknado on SyFy, and even the great numbers for a repeat showing look tiny when compared to Shark Week's big draw. And while, no, Discovery is not pushing something on the scale Sharknado, Shark Week has often taken a sensational tone, even if some feel the Megalodon programming stretched the truth a little too far with an intentional deception.
We'll have to see if there's a Shark Week revolt in the ratings, but for now Discovery is riding high. Or swimming high? Sharks!