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Don't Fear The Reaper's Lack Of Producers?

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Written By

April 7th, 2009

With the report that Reaper's producers will be leaving the show, most assume that it's a goner at the end of the season. Others say that it's not that big a deal, and might just be a chance for a new start for the show. On the ratings front, the show refuses to give up the ghost, its demo ratings continue to improve (although, so did the CW 18-49 average) week to week. With the news about the producers the show's got to be placed on the endangered list. And because of a lack of producers, I  think its chance of returning is low, but it's not zero.

This week there was a report that producers will pitch the potential for The Game to become a one hour dramedy. If the alternative is dramedy or doom it seems like the future prospects for the show are slim, but not none. No such option is open for Everybody Hates Chris. Its run looks to be over. Privileged's ratings were just terrible  it's not going to be coming back.

This is a breakdown of CW scripted shows and their renewal and cancelation prospects.  Here are the others:

Our Renew / Cancel index predicts potential renewal for *next* season: Canceled/Not Returning, In Danger, or Renewal Likely for 2009-10, Renewal Announced.


PROGRAM Net  STD 18-49 (LIVE+SD) (000)  Network Avg. STD 18-49 Renew/ Cancel index Status
EASY MONEY CW  288  1,040 0.28  
VALENTINE CW  345  1,040 0.33  
EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS CW  815  1,040 0.78  
GAME, THE CW  911  1,040 0.88  
PRIVILEGED CW  918  1,040 0.88  
REAPER CW  1,230  1,040 1.18  
90210 CW  1,429  1,040 1.37  renewed
One Tree Hill CW  1,539  1,040 1.48  renewed
Gossip Girl CW  1,549  1,040 1.49  renewed
Supernatural CW  1,575  1,040 1.51  renewed
Smallville CW  1,858  1,040 1.79  renewed

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Notes:

Friday night - Friday is quickly becoming an 18-49 wasteland, so these shows may be allowed a lower threshold for success than shows on other nights.

The Renew/Cancel Index is a show’s Season To Date adults 18-49 viewership divided by its networks Season to Date average 18-49 viewership.

How did we come up with our Index? We found that last season, the future of a show was nearly directly related to its adults 18-49 average viewers divided by its networks 18-49 average viewers. Many other factors may matter, but they all seemed to boil down to that one number. Because American Idol so skewed Fox’s 18-49 average, and would make nearly all Fox shows fall into the “cancel” range, for Fox, I used the last STD 18-49 average *before* Idol. Last season, if a show had better than 92% of its network’s average 18-49 viewership (0.92 in our index) it was pretty safe, below that level it was in danger.

Remember that plenty can change before the end of the season, particularly for the shows with indexes between 0.80 and last season’s renewal line of 0.92. The list is presented in a (and has to be, since I cannot predict future ratings) “what would happen if the season ended today” mode. Could the renewal line be 0.86 this season? Possibly. It might also be 0.95. Might it be 0.70? No chance.

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2009 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved. All viewership numbers are Live+SD.

 
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