What Does Comcast Want When It Looks At Community And Other Marginal NBC Shows?

Categories: Cancel/Renew NBC Shows

Written By

December 8th, 2009

community
Our Renew / Cancel Index predicts potential renewal or cancellation for scripted broadcast primetime shows for the 2010-11 season (results through December 6, 2009):

  • Likely To Be Canceled By May, 2010
  • Some Danger Of Being Canceled By May, 2010
  • Likely to Be Renewed For The 2010-11 Season
Program Renew/ Cancel Index
Law & Order (F), (P) 0.54
Trauma (P) 0.67
Mercy (P) 0.71
Parks & Recreation (P) 0.76
Community 0.82
Heroes (P) 0.90
Law & Order: SVU (P) 0.94
30 Rock (P) 1.12
The Office (P) 1.53

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What does Comcast see when it looks at NBC broadcast primetime?  Two dead dramas (Mercy, Trauma), one drama holding on by a thread (Heroes), two poorly rated comedies that may just have to do (Parks & Recreation, Community), and one drama hoping for an historical renewal (Law & Order).

My guess is that most of all Comcast would like all the bad press about NBC primetime to go away. Witness the "We love primetime. Really!" offensive in public from both Comcast execs and NBCU's Jeff Zucker over the past week. I think that's a smart move. It's a lot easier to get the TV press off their backs than it is to actually improve the situation, but one step at a time.

For shows in the Some Danger category only, I am including short term Index indicators for shows either with either improving :mrgreen: or deteriorating :oops: Indexes, based on 4 week averages instead of season to date Indexes.

This is a breakdown of NBC scripted shows and their renewal and cancellation prospects. Here are links to the other networks:

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Notes:

The Renew/Cancel Index is a show's Season To Date adults 18-49 rating divided by its network's Season to Date average 18-49 rating. If a show's season to date 18-49 ratings average equalled its network's 18-49 average, the show would have an Index of 1.00. Without special factors, scripted shows that were more than 10% below their network's average are typically canceled by the end of the broadcast primetime season.

Factors that could cause a show to be renewed with a well below average Index:

  • (F) -Fridays: Shows airing on Fridays have been renewed with significantly lower than average Indexes.
  • (S) - Syndication: Shows nearing syndication (66-88 episodes), often have economic factors that trump ratings leading to renewal.
  • (T) - Third Party: Shows that have a portion of their cost underwritten by a 3rd party can be renewed with substantially lower ratings.
  • (P) - Produced by the network's production company - For shows on the bubble, being produced by the network's corporate production company can be a survival advantage. For real losers, it's unlikely to help.

While I initially tried to designate shows with "plum" timeslots, I think that's hard to make that call at this point in the season. It's likely still a factor, but will have to be an "after the fact" call.


What's the History of the Index and How Did It Do In the Past? Check out the results from the 2007-8 season and the 2008-9 season.

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2009 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved. All ratings used are Live+Same Day viewing.

 
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