Credit: Photo Courtesy of MTV Photo: Jersey Shore Season 5: Snooki, Deena, and Sammi in Seaside

As we've previously reported, MTV has already optioned a Season 6 of Jersey Shore, so it's highly unlikely that the guido-licious reality show won't return in some form. However, as of a month ago, MTV still hadn't decided if the cast we know would be back. What's the status now?

Recently, Sammi and Deena made an appearance on Live! With Kelly, where Sammi admitted "we haven’t heard anything [about the new season]," hopefully adding, "we would love to [film another one].”

Deena jumped in with even stronger phrasing: "I'm down. I pray we film again. I would love to film. I love filming."

Will Deena's prayers be answered? There's still no word from MTV, but Jersey Shore's recent ratings might give us a clue — and it's not a good sign for Sammi and Deena.

The show's ratings have recently taken a steep plunge. According to TV By the Numbers, two weeks ago the show pulled in 5.6 million viewers and a 3.2 in the coveted 18-49 demo, down from 6.5 million and a 3.9 the prior week. Last week it was down even more, with 5.4 million viewers and a 3.0.

Now, these numbers are still great relative to the competition — Jersey Shore easily beats all other cable shows on Thursdays and still stacks up well against the major broadcast shows. It remains one of the most popular cable shows overall (last week it was topped only by Pawn Stars and American Pickers. Ah, the power of memorabilia). That said, this is a far cry from the days when Jersey routinely got 7+ million viewers.

The falling ratings plus the cast's exponentially increasing salary has to make the idea of starting over with a new group of guidos appealing to the MTV Powers that Be. It would give them a chance to shake up the formula that is clearly starting to get stale, and they could pay the newbies significantly less.

However, the question remains: If they go with a blank slate, will anyone tune in to give the new cast a chance? Weigh in at our Facebook page.

Catch the macaroni rascals on a new episode of Jersey Shore on Thursday, February 16 at 10 pm ET/PT on MTV.

Source: TV By the Numbers