The Good Wife: Better To "Rate" Good, Than To "View" Good

Categories: Cancel/Renew CBS Shows

Written By

January 12th, 2010


Our Renew / Cancel Index predicts potential renewal or cancellation for scripted broadcast primetime shows for the 2010-11 season (includes results through January 10, 2010):

  • Likely To Be Canceled By May, 2010
  • Some Danger Of Being Canceled By May, 2010
  • Likely to Be Renewed For The 2010-11 Season
  • Renewed For The 2010-11 Season
Program Renew/ Cancel Index
Numb3rs (F), (P) 0.55
Three Rivers (P) .55*
Medium (F), (P) 0.61
Cold Case (P) 0.65
New Adventures of Old Christine (S) 0.66
Ghost Whisperer (F), (S) 0.68
Gary Unmarried 0.71
The Good Wife (P) 0.88
Accidentally On Purpose (P) 0.89
CSI:NY (P) 1.00
How I Met Your Mother (S) 1.03
The Mentalist 1.11
CSI (P) 1.13
Criminal Minds (P) 1.14
CSI: Miami (P) 1.16
NCIS: Los Angeles (P) 1.16
NCIS (P) 1.34
Two and a Half Men 1.41
Big Bang Theory 1.51

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1/14 Update: NCIS:LA and The Good Wife have both been renewed for next season.

Excuse the mangled grammar, but I am channeling my inner Billy Crystal.

With a 3.0 adults 18-49 rating last week, The Good Wife continues to improve its relative ratings compared to the rest of the CBS lineup. Barring a late season ratings plunge (which I don't attempt to predict) it's now looking good for renewal for the 2010-11 season.

To be clear, it was never in significant danger of being canceled, but to all those who've been arguing how well it does in average viewership (vs. adults 18-49 ratings) note the butcher's bill of highly viewed (but not so highly rated) CBS shows last season (numbers through early January, 2009).

  • Without A Trace (#17 Viewership rank, all broadcast networks, 11.8 million viewers): canceled
  • Eleventh Hour (#23, 11.1 million viewers): canceled
  • Worst Week (#34, 9.2 million): canceled
  • The Unit (#35, 9.2 million): canceled

This season, Cold Case is heading for cancellation.  Accidentally On Purpose looks like this season's Worst Week. Now that Accidentally On Purpose is moving to Wednesday, it will be time for it to put up (ratings) or shut up.

Numb3rs future looks bleak with this season's order being reduced.

Figuring CBS will continue to stomach bad ratings for a new comedy block, I would be surprised if CBS canceled both Old Christine and Gary Unmarried, but not if they just canceled Christine.

Remarks this week by CBS' Nina Tassler implied that Medium wasn't a lock for renewal. It's ratings haven't done that much better than Numb3rs, but I figured CBS wouldn't consider canceling two Friday shows in one season. I may have been mistaken, it's at least in some danger of not coming back.

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.

I’ve added a new category, Renewed For The 2010-11 Season, for shows who’s renewal has already been announced for the next season. It may take a while to get all the past announcements noted, let me know what I have missed, yet be patient.

This is a breakdown of CBS 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 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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