Over 7.6 million viewers watched the premiere of Jersey Shore Thursday, making it one of the MTV's top-rated series telecasts of all time, according to Nielsen estimates.

The main attraction was Snooki who appeared slimmed down and fit, compared to previous seasons.

Jersey Shore revolves around a group of folks living together in a beach rental home. It debuted in 2009 making Nicole Snooki Polizzi a star overnight. Snooki became popular among the viewers for her hard partying and entertaining antics.

The cast had travelled to Italy in season four during which Snooki appeared fitter and trimmer than she did in the previous seasons.

The change was much more evident in the season five premiere in which the group returned from Italy to New Jersey. The season premiere of the Italy outing had 8.79 million viewers. The show had lost some of its audience and the Italy season ended with 6.6 million viewers.

Before start of season five, Snooki had said that she had almost hit her goal weight of 98 lbs thanks to working out, cutting calories and controversial diet pill Zantrex-3. She has been tweeting to her 4 million twitter followers more about her gym sessions than her party experiences.

The show has become a big hit for MTV though many have raised criticisms for the presentation of the sexual antics and drunken behavior.

Meanwhile, the show will be aired internationally on MTV channels around the world starting in March 2012. Its executive producer is Sally Ann Salsano from 495 Productions and the concept has been created by Anthony Beltempo.