It's early in the season, but it's not too early to figure some things out. For example, out of the 65 shows tracked by the Renew/Cancel Index (that only focuses on scripted shows) seven shows are certain to be canceled (or already canceled) and four are likely to be canceled. The fate of 17% of the shows is already pretty clear.*
|The Whole Truth||ABC||Certain to be Canceled|
|My Generation||ABC||Already Canceled|
|Detroit 1-8-7||ABC||Likely to be Canceled|
|Medium||CBS||Likely to be Canceled|
|Life Unexpected||CW||Certain to be Canceled|
|Undercovers||NBC||Likely to be Canceled|
|Chase||NBC||Likely to be Canceled|
|The Good Guys||FOX||Certain to be Canceled|
|Lone Star||FOX||Already Canceled|
|Running Wilde||FOX||Certain to be Canceled|
*I know there are some semantics zealots out there who will cry "Outlaw technically hasn't been canceled yet!" That's true, but for these purposes 'canceled doesn't mean canceled so much as it means "isn't going to be renewed." I think everyone can agree Outlaw isn't going to be renewed. And yes, I know there are fans who will insist Life Unexpected won't (or shouldn't) be canceled, but barring a remarkable ratings turnaround, it will be.
Relatively speaking, especially as the season progresses, forecasting the shows certain or likely to be canceled or certain or likely to be renewed is easy. It's the shows in the middle of the ratings spectrum rather than the extremes that are much harder to predict.
Right now by my math (which is slightly different than the current Renew/Cancel Indexes*) the fates of 80% of the scripted shows are currently pretty clear with 17% certain to be, likely to be or already canceled and 63% certain to be, likely to be, or already renewed.
*The most recent R/C Index has a few shows pegged as likely to be renewed, but based on additional data (R/C is only through last Sunday) and current trends, I've added four shows: The Event, Law & Order: LA, Parenthood and No Ordinary Family. If the current trends hold, it's merely a matter of time before the designation for those shows changes in the R/C Index.
Early Bubble Show Contenders:
|Better With You||ABC|
|No Ordinary Family||ABC|
|The Good Wife||CBS|
|Lie to Me||FOX|
|Law & Order: LA||NBC|
For me, the fun is in the other 20% listed above -- the bubble shows. Over the course of the season more shows will slip into the bubble category and some of the current bubble shows will rise or fall and move out of bubble status, but I'd guess a few of them, including the perennially bubbleishus Chuck, to be bubble shows wire-to-wire.