Bubble Watch: Should 'V' and 'Harry's Law' Move to the Bubble?; Should 'Fringe' Move Off of It?

Categories: 1-Featured,Bubble Watch

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February 20th, 2011

When it comes to bubble status, like the Renew/Cancel Index we're focusing on the likelihood that a show will be renewed for next season (2011-12).  Certain shows are toss-ups where based on the ratings, the renewal decisions could go either way and not be surprising.

V fans are hopeful based on consecutive weeks of ratings gains and some have suggested as a result that it should at least move up to 'on the bubble' status. I can't see any circumstance where ABC will renew a show with a sub-2.0 adults 18-49 rating and the recent uptick only brought it  up to a 1.9 rating last week. Sure, it's doing way better than the shows the air before it and after it (No Ordinary Family and Detroit 1-8-7), but those shows have horrible ratings and are certain to be canceled. V's ratings aren't as horrible, but they still are pretty bad, so it's still likely to be canceled.

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Don't be surprised to see Harry's Law move down to the bubble in this week's Renew/Cancel report. I won't fault Bill for moving it if he does, since against original competition on ABC and CBS the last two weeks it has taken a hit. I'm leaving it as likely to be renewed at this point and my reason will surprise (and perhaps annoy) some: it may be the rare case of total viewers actually mattering a little.

In this case that's a function of overall suckage at NBC. Total viewers don't matter to NBC, but the local affiliates care less about 18-49 and more about total viewers when it comes to the 10pm lead-in to the 11pm local news. Even beaten down, last week Harry's Law had more viewers than any other NBC 10pm show. I can see the new Comcast overlords throwing the affiliates a bone.  Of course, if Harry's Law continues to bleed viewers, that won't be a factor, but for now I think it is. It will be interesting to see if the return of The Event helps Harry's Law. Obviously, The Cape hasn't.

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Also don't be surprised to see Fringe move to "likely to be canceled" status in this week's Renew/Cancel report, but here in the Bubble Watch it's staying on the bubble.  Am I having a "but Kevin Reilly said..." moment?  Perhaps. Mostly I'm having a "there isn't a lot of historical precedent" moment, so I am deferring to what would surprise me and what wouldn't.  If Fringe were to pull 1.5 adults 18-49 ratings for the rest of its Friday run, I certainly wouldn't be surprised if Fox canceled it, but I also wouldn't be surprised if Fox renewed it. It's a fine line because if it pulls 1.4s the rest of the way, I would be surprised if Fox renewed it.  We'll just have to see what happens.

Changes/Additions for the week:

Mad Love premiered and I've got it designated 'on the bubble' for now.  Its premiere ratings were certainly good enough that it would appear destined for renewal if it was on NBC.  But it's on CBS.

Update: Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior:  Ooops!  Forgot to add this to the table below. There's only one data point, but that data point is in "likely to be renewed" range.

As predicted the stay on the bubble was short for The Chicago Code, which dropped down to a 2.0 in its second week.  There's not much data, but the data limited data says its headed for cancellation so I changed it to "likely to be canceled"

There's not much data for Traffic Light either, but its numbers are ugly enough that I changed it from likely to certain cancellation.

Bob's Burgers' average will be boosted for a while by its big premiere numbers. but its more recent numbers paint a picture of "likely to be canceled".

Note: only scripted shows that have aired at least one episode are in the table below.

Show Network Status
My Generation ABC Already Canceled
The Whole Truth ABC Already Canceled
Medium CBS Already Canceled
Life Unexpected CW Already Canceled
Lone Star Fox Already Canceled
Running Wilde Fox Already Canceled
The Good Guys Fox Already Canceled
Chase NBC Already Canceled
Outlaw NBC Already Canceled
Undercovers NBC Already Canceled
Detroit 1-8-7 ABC Certain To Be Canceled
No Ordinary Family ABC Certain To Be Canceled
The Defenders CBS Certain To Be Canceled
Traffic Light Fox Certain To Be Canceled
The Cape NBC Certain To Be Canceled
Perfect Couples NBC Certain To Be Canceled
Off The Map ABC Likely To Be Canceled
V ABC Likely To Be Canceled
$#*! My Dad Says CBS Likely To Be Canceled
Human Target Fox Likely To Be Canceled
Lie To Me Fox Likely To Be Canceled
Bob's Burgers Fox Likely To Be Canceled
The Chicago Code Fox Likely To Be Canceled
The Event NBC Likely To Be Canceled
Better With You ABC On The Bubble
Brothers & Sisters ABC On The Bubble
Blue Bloods CBS On The Bubble
CSI: Miami CBS On The Bubble
CSI: NY CBS On The Bubble
Mad Love CBS On The Bubble
The Good Wife CBS On The Bubble
American Dad* Fox On The Bubble
Fringe Fox On The Bubble
Chuck NBC On The Bubble
Community NBC On The Bubble
Law & Order: Los Angeles NBC On The Bubble
Outsourced NBC On The Bubble
Mr. Sunshine ABC Likely To Be Renewed
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Likely To Be Renewed
Rules of Engagement CBS Likely To Be Renewed
90210' CW Likely To Be Renewed
Gossip Girl CW Likely To Be Renewed
Hellcats CW Likely To Be Renewed
Nikita CW Likely To Be Renewed
One Tree Hill CW Likely To Be Renewed
Harry's Law NBC Likely To Be Renewed
Parenthood NBC Likely To Be Renewed
Parks & Recreation NBC Likely To Be Renewed
Desperate Housewives ABC Certain To Be Renewed
Criminal Minds CBS Certain To Be Renewed
CSI CBS Certain To Be Renewed
How I Met Your Mother CBS Certain To Be Renewed
Mike & Molly CBS Certain To Be Renewed
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS Certain To Be Renewed
The Mentalist CBS Certain To Be Renewed
Supernatural CW Certain To Be Renewed
Vampire Diaries CW Certain To Be Renewed
Bones Fox Certain To Be Renewed
Family Guy Fox Certain To Be Renewed
House Fox Certain To Be Renewed
Law & Order: SVU NBC Certain To Be Renewed
The Office NBC Certain To Be Renewed
Castle ABC Already Renewed
Cougar Town ABC Already Renewed
Grey's Anatomy ABC Already Renewed
Modern Family ABC Already Renewed
Private Practice ABC Already Renewed
The Middle ABC Already Renewed
NCIS CBS Already Renewed
The Big Bang Theory CBS Already Renewed
Two and a Half Men CBS Already Renewed
Glee Fox Already Renewed
Raising Hope Fox Already Renewed
The Cleveland Show Fox Already Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Already Renewed
30 Rock NBC Already Renewed
Smallville CW Final Season

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*Though I've seen no official confirmation as far as renewal for next season for 'American Dad' it will have enough episodes left to air some next season whether it's renewed or not.  At this point nothing would surprise me much, including flipping 'Bobs Burgers' to the Sunday 7:30p timeslot and moving 'American Dad' back in the primary lineup.

 
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