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Reaper: Renew or Cancel?

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Written By

November 25th, 2007

UPDATE: CW Has Renewed Reaper.
New Episodes return March 17, 2009

reaper.jpgCW's Reaper, Tuesday 9PM Eastern, was a pre-season critics darling, but has the comedy about reclaiming lost souls for the devil captured the eyes of enough viewers to survive for another season?

It won't be Heaven or Hell making the decision, but likely 57th Street or West Hollywood. Before they get the chance, we ask: Renew or Cancel?

Reaper's Ratings Rank among New CW Shows, All New Shows

Date Viewer Rank among New CW shows Viewer Rank among all new shows
9/25 #1 of 4 #16 of 20
10/2 #2 of 6 #19 of 23
10/9 #2 of 6 #20 of 24
10/16 #1 of 5 #20 of 24
10/23 #1 of 5 #20 of 24
10/30 #1 of 5 #17 of 22
11/6 #2 of 5 #19 of 22
11/13 #2 of 5 #21 of 22

In a disappointing fall for new CW shows, Reaper's ratings started at the top and have traded the #1 or #2 position with Gossip Girl for the entire season among new CW shows.

Among all new shows, CW shows have been solidly at the bottom. At least Reaper's ratings have been a bit more above the bottom than the other CW shows.

How is it doing against its competition on Tuesday?

Reaper's Ratings and Rankings @ 9PM Tuesday

Date Viewers (Rank) Adults 18-49 (Rank) Adults 18-34 (Rank) Adults 25-54 (Rank)
9/25 3.28m (5) 1.95m (5) 1.19m (5) 1.71m (5)
10/2 2.86m (5) 1.78m (5) 1.08m (5) 1.42m (5)
10/9 2.65m (5) 1.62m (5) 0.95m (5) 1.28m (5)
10/16 3.27m (5) 1.93m (5) 1.12m (5) 1.78m (5)
10/23* 2.44m (5) 1.52m (5) 0.89m (5) 1.26m (5)
10/30 2.60m (5) 1.56m (5) 0.81m (5) 1.29m (5)
11/6 2.42m (5) 1.31m (5) 0.70m (5) 1.18m (5)
11/13 2.46m (5) 1.53m (5) 0.83m (5) 1.35m (5)

Reaper's ratings have been below its ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox and even Univision competition in all categories at 9pm Tuesday.

Reaper's ratings dropped sharply after its debut, but have stabilized, although at a low level, recently. (*10/23 data is Live, all other data is Live+SD, useful for rankings but not viewership trends).

Conclusions

Negatives

  1. Reaper ratings are consistently last place in its timeslot in all demographic categories.
  2. Reaper ratings are near the bottom compared to all new broadcast shows.

Positives

  1. Reaper is one of CW's two best new shows, and CW may not be able to do better with new shows.
  2. Reaper ratings, while low, have stabilized.

Verdict: Marginal renew.

I think the bad performance of the new CW shows has possibly reset the CW expectations for new shows, and as badly as Reaper ratings have turned out relative to all other networks it may well be a keeper when looking at CW's future options.

 

Wondering about other shows? Check our all our Renew or Cancel? posts.

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Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2007 Nielsen Media Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 
  • Ben

    I absolutely HATE Reaper. It sucks. It has a terrible plot and isn’t funny. It didn’t even deserve to be on T.V in the 1st place!! Of course CW would have on though because the whole network SUCKS!!!!

  • Ben

    I absolutely HATE Reaper. It sucks. It has a terrible plot and isn’t funny. It didn’t even deserve to be on T.V in the 1st place!! Of course CW would have on though because the whole network SUCKS!!!!

  • Joel

    It’s positively criminal how little love Reaper gets. If it had Joss Whedon’s stamp on it instead of Kevin Smith’s it’d have a giant cult following, with legions of fans sending CW execs power-sanders in a petition to get it renewed.

    While us geeks lament the loss of Angel and Buffy, they’re missing out on the closest thing to it since they went off the air. (And personally, I think this has the potential to be better)

    I hope all the cries of “too episodic” are going away now, as it’s developing quite an interesting meta-story. Sure, it’s got the scope of The Wire, but show me just how many network shows are anywhere within that.
    Even viewer-darling, “Lost” has a standalone storyline, that takes precedence over the bigger picture, for the majority of it’s episodes.

  • Joel

    It’s positively criminal how little love Reaper gets. If it had Joss Whedon’s stamp on it instead of Kevin Smith’s it’d have a giant cult following, with legions of fans sending CW execs power-sanders in a petition to get it renewed.

    While us geeks lament the loss of Angel and Buffy, they’re missing out on the closest thing to it since they went off the air. (And personally, I think this has the potential to be better)

    I hope all the cries of “too episodic” are going away now, as it’s developing quite an interesting meta-story. Sure, it’s got the scope of The Wire, but show me just how many network shows are anywhere within that.
    Even viewer-darling, “Lost” has a standalone storyline, that takes precedence over the bigger picture, for the majority of it’s episodes.

  • Joel

    It’s positively criminal how little love Reaper gets. If it had Joss Whedon’s stamp on it instead of Kevin Smith’s it’d have a giant cult following, with legions of fans sending CW execs power-sanders in a petition to get it renewed.

    While us geeks lament the loss of Angel and Buffy, they’re missing out on the closest thing to it since they went off the air. (And personally, I think this has the potential to be better)

    I hope all the cries of “too episodic” are going away now, as it’s developing quite an interesting meta-story. Sure, it’s got the scope of The Wire, but show me just how many network shows are anywhere within that.
    Even viewer-darling, “Lost” has a standalone storyline, that takes precedence over the bigger picture, for the majority of it’s episodes.

  • Joel

    Horrible typo above, but when I said “it’s got the scop of The Wire…” I meant “it’s not the scope of The Wire…”

    Changes things a bit.

  • Joel

    Horrible typo above, but when I said “it’s got the scop of The Wire…” I meant “it’s not the scope of The Wire…”

    Changes things a bit.

  • Joel

    Horrible typo above, but when I said “it’s got the scop of The Wire…” I meant “it’s not the scope of The Wire…”

    Changes things a bit.

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