Bubble Watch: "Community's" Prospects Continue to Brighten; CBS Formalizes Most of Its Formalities

Categories: Bubble Watch

Written By

March 18th, 2012

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** (2012-13).  Certain shows are toss-ups where based on the ratings, the renewal decisions could go either way and not be surprising.

Here, “canceled” is used interchangeably with “won’t be renewed for next season” and is not meant to imply a show will be yanked off the schedule in the current season though obviously the two outcomes are not mutually exclusive. The semantics police and lawyers should feel free to break out the handcuffs and plead their cases in the comments. Besides, no matter what anyone at ABC says, reasonable people know with certainty that Pan Am isn't coming back next season.

This Isn't The Renew/Cancel Index

Though the basic methodology is the same (intra-network relative ranking of shows by adults 18-49 ),unlike the Renew/Cancel Index which predicts what would happen if the season ended now, Bubble Watch prognosticates about what will happen by May. The two are still usually closely aligned, and almost certainly very closely aligned towards the end of the season.

Community’s prospects have doubly brightened. NBC’s other scripted shows experienced declines during Community’s sabbatical and that improved Community’s relative standing. Then it returned with season high ratings (with room to spare). Sure, it didn’t have to contend with Big Bang Theory and some will argue that the real test will be the week after next when The Big Bang Theory returns.  I’d argue other than The Voice, it’s not like NBC has a lot of shows (or perhaps any) that are shoo-ins to perform better than Community even if all the other broadcast networks were running test patterns..

CBS renewed almost every show that was previously designated either likely to be renewed or certain to be renewed so none of the renewals were a surprise.  The only shows listed as certain or likely renewal last week that weren’t renewed were Two and a Half Men which I had as a certain renewal and CSI: Miami which I had as a likely renewal. CBS noted it is in discussions to renew Two and a Half Men for future seasons and there’s little doubt they’ll work the negotiations out and renew it, I’ve downgraded it slightly to “likely renewal.” With the renewals of The Good Wife and the flagship CSI,  it seems a certainty that at least one of the remaining CSI’s will be cancelled and perhaps both along with Unforgettable. I’ve downgraded CSI: Miami to the bubble where it arguably should’ve been for a while, as well as downgrading Unforgettable to certain cancellation.

Fairness zealots can point out that Unforgettable has had slightly better ratings than now renewed The Good Wife. But other than The Good Wife, Unforgettable is CBS's lowest-rated drama that doesn't air on Friday night. Some will chalk up Unforgettable's inevitable cancellation to lack of critical acclaim and Emmy awards, but I'll chalk it up to its low ratings and being so far away from syndication that the syndication shepherds at CBS can't see syndication on the horizon.

Though it’s only aired two episodes as I write this GCB is at least a little more likely to be renewed than canceled so I’ve taken it off the bubble and upgraded it to likely renewal. Missing’s lone outing doesn’t bode well for its future, but I’ll give it at least another week before moving it off the bubble.

As ever, no, I don't think Supernatural’s prospects are as bleak as the horribly-rated Nikita's.  Based on ratings alone Supernatural's prospects are much, much better. But because ratings are so awful for the CW in general (where every show except The Vampire Diaries has horrid ratings, even Supernatural) I’m not comfortable that it’s all about the relative ratings at the CW. I’m among Supernatural’s loyal fan base, but let’s face it, that fan base is relatively tiny when even lowly NBC managed to debut a show on Friday night whose originals have consistently performed twice as well as Supernatural’s originals and three times better than  Nikita's.

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

Show Network Status
Charlie's Angels ABC Canceled
Man Up ABC Canceled
Pan Am ABC Canceled
Work It ABC Canceled
How To Be A Gentleman CBS Canceled
Allen Gregory Fox Canceled
I Hate My Teenage Daughter Fox Effectively Canceled
Terra Nova Fox Canceled
The Firm NBC Canceled
Free Agents NBC Canceled
Prime Suspect NBC Canceled
The Playboy Club NBC Canceled
Body Of Proof ABC Certain Cancellation
A Gifted Man CBS Certain Cancellation
Alcatraz Fox Certain Cancellation
Harry's Law NBC Certain Cancellation
The River ABC Likely Cancellation
Unforgettable CBS Likely Cancellation
Hart Of Dixie CW Likely Cancellation
Ringer CW Likely Cancellation
Breaking In Fox Likely Cancellation
Fringe Fox Likely Cancellation
The Finder Fox Likely Cancellation
Are You There, Chelsea? NBC Likely Cancellation
Cougar Town ABC On The Bubble
Missing ABC On The Bubble
Private Practice ABC On The Bubble
CSI: Miami CBS On The Bubble
CSI: NY CBS On The Bubble
Rob CBS On The Bubble
Rules of Engagement CBS On The Bubble
Gossip Girl CW On The Bubble
Nikita CW On The Bubble
Supernatural CW On The Bubble
The Secret Circle CW On The Bubble
Bob's Burgers Fox On The Bubble
Napoleon Dynamite Fox On The Bubble
Touch Fox On The Bubble
Awake NBC On The Bubble
Whitney NBC On The Bubble
Castle ABC Likely Renewal
GCB ABC Likely Renewal
Happy Endings ABC Likely Renewal
Last Man Standing ABC Likely Renewal
Revenge ABC Likely Renewal
Suburgatory ABC Likely Renewal
Two and a Half Men CBS Likely Renewal
90210 CW Likely Renewal
Bones Fox Likely Renewal
Raising Hope Fox Likely Renewal
30 Rock NBC Likely Renewal
Community NBC Likely Renewal
Parenthood NBC Likely Renewal
Parks & Recreation NBC Likely Renewal
Smash NBC Likely Renewal
Up All Night NBC Likely Renewal
Grey's Anatomy ABC Certain Renewal
Modern Family ABC Certain Renewal
Once Upon A Time ABC Certain Renewal
The Middle ABC Certain Renewal
Vampire Diaries CW Certain Renewal
Glee Fox Certain Renewal
New Girl Fox Certain Renewal
Law & Order: SVU NBC Certain Renewal
The Office NBC Certain Renewal
2 Broke Girls CBS Renewed
The Big Bang Theory CBS Renewed
Blue Bloods CBS Renewed
Criminal Minds CBS Renewed
CSI CBS Renewed
The Good Wife CBS Renewed
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Renewed
How I Met Your Mother CBS Renewed
The Mentalist CBS Renewed
Mike & Molly CBS Renewed
NCIS CBS Renewed
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS Renewed
Person Of Interest CBS Renewed
American Dad Fox Renewed
Family Guy Fox Renewed
The Cleveland Show Fox Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Renewed
Grimm NBC Renewed
Desperate Housewives ABC Final Season
One Tree Hill CW Final Season
House Fox Final Season
Chuck NBC Final Season
 
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