Bubble Watch: Down to the Wire for 'Nikita,' 'Gossip Girl,' 'Hart of Dixie' and 'Secret Circle' + 'Cougar Town' Downgraded

Categories: 2-Featured,Bubble Watch

Written By

May 6th, 2012

There were only 3 CW shows that were likely or certain to be renewed last week and this week all three were renewed. That isn't great news for any of the CW shows on the bubble, but it isn't really any worse news eitherand  Gossip Girl, Hart of Dixie, The Secret Circle and Nikita remain bubble shows. I'm sure  all four shows won't be cancelled, but I'd be pretty surprised if all four shows were  renewed.

I don't know what Nikita's international sales, online viewing really are, but despite its horrible ratings, it's on Friday and still on the bubble. Fans should hope the hard-to-substantiate reports of Nikita's international prowess are true because a renewal for one more season all but guarantees that it will be renewed for another season after that to get it to syndication.

I give Hart of Dixie an edge over The Secret Circle because CW already knows how Hart of Dixie does with a weak lead-in and surely envisions The Secret Circle will do worse when it no longer has The Vampire Diaries as a lead-in.

Cougar Town

Saturday came reports that ABC is in early talks with TBS about taking Cougar Town off of ABC's hands. That's potentially good news for fans, but bad news when it comes to the show's prospects on ABC. I'm not quite as pessimistic as Bill that the TBS talks mean de facto cancellation on ABC. But it clearly indicates that while ABC Studios wants to get the show to enough episodes for syndication, the ABC broadcast network would be plenty happy for someone  else to take on that task.

It'd be hard to fault ABC for feeling that way since the ratings have been terrible and it has several middling-rated (but better rated than Cougar Town) comedies to choose from for schedule padding.

I've downgraded Cougar Town to likely cancellation on ABC.


I'm not quite as optimistic as Bill about Scandal of course I had the benefit of seeing Thursday's ratings which Bill didn't have when he posted Tuesday's Renew/Cancel report. But I'm not as pessimistic as many commenters either, and Scandal remains on the bubble.

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.

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
Breaking In Fox Canceled
I Hate My Teenage Daughter Fox Canceled
Terra Nova Fox Canceled
Best Friends Forever NBC Canceled
The Firm NBC Canceled
Free Agents NBC Canceled
Prime Suspect NBC Canceled
The Playboy Club NBC Canceled
Body of Proof ABC Certain Cancellation
Missing ABC Certain Cancellation
The River ABC Certain Cancellation
A Gifted Man CBS Certain Cancellation
NYC 22 CBS Certain Cancellation
Unforgettable CBS Certain Cancellation
The L.A. Complex CW Will live on in Canada
Ringer CW Certain Cancellation
Awake NBC Certain Cancellation
Bent NBC Certain Cancellation
Harry's Law NBC Certain Cancellation
Cougar Town ABC Likely Cancellation
Alcatraz Fox Likely Cancellation
The Finder Fox Likely Cancellation
Are You There, Chelsea? NBC Likely Cancellation
GCB ABC On The Bubble
Scandal 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
Hart of Dixie CW On The Bubble
Nikita 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
Up All Night NBC On The Bubble
Castle ABC Likely Renewal
Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 ABC Likely Renewal
Happy Endings ABC Likely Renewal
Last Man Standing ABC Likely Renewal
Private Practice ABC Likely Renewal
Revenge ABC Likely Renewal
Suburgatory ABC Likely Renewal
Two and a Half Men CBS Likely Renewal
30 Rock NBC Likely Renewal
Community NBC Likely Renewal
Law & Order: SVU NBC Likely Renewal
Parenthood NBC Likely Renewal
Parks & Recreation NBC Likely Renewal
Whitney 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
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
90210 CW Renewed
Supernatural CW Renewed
The Vampire Diaries CW Renewed
American Dad Fox Renewed
Bones Fox Renewed
The Cleveland Show Fox Renewed
Family Guy Fox Renewed
Fringe Fox Renewed
Glee Fox Renewed
New Girl Fox Renewed
Raising Hope Fox Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Renewed
Grimm NBC Renewed
Smash NBC Renewed
Desperate Housewives ABC Final Season
One Tree Hill CW Final Season
House Fox Final Season
Chuck NBC Final Season
  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    i still think AWAKE is a really good show! i dont see why it is designated as certain to be cancelled

    Perhaps because you’re one of those (many!) people who think your opinion about how good the show is matters more than making money. It doesn’t. AWAKE’s ratings are LOOK AWAY BAD!

  • Spencer

    I think NBC Will axe at least 3 Comedies.
    Are you there Chelsea?
    Up all night

  • David Howell

    I’d cancel LMS but I’m not sure ABC will. It did so well early in the season with no lead-in that ABC will likely try and make it work again. A transfer to Fox (as a lead-in for Rebounding, maybe?) fits far better than squeezing a “bro show” onto the most female-skewing network of the Big Four with no compatible sitcom to pair it with, but a transfer after one season would be weird (unprecedented?).

    I suspect PP’s getting a 13 episode final season, and I’m tempted to predict Scandal is its midseason replacement with the Shonda connection. Does GCB have particular baggage in a Presidential election year if ABC is wanting to avoid accusations of liberal bias? I thought it might, and then remembered the week after Newt Gingrich tore into the title of the show, it got a series high. Either way, I’m leaning cancellation, but it’s definitely on the bubble.

    I’m leaning cancellation with Touch – yes they can cancel all their rookie dramas again, especially with what sounds like a decent pilot season, an effective announcement of a new comedy block, and with the Cowell juggernaut in place for both fall and spring next season again.

  • Dana

    For the cw, I bet nikita will get another season, along ith hart of Dixie. Gossip girl will get its final season. Secret circle will be cancelled I imagine.

  • Had to change my name

    That’s 4 Comedies

  • Justin121


    I actually saw your posts over the Thursday Finals thread. But I just realized there’s no way both Scandal and GCB get renewed.

    Unless Privare Practice gets cancelled. Since PP’s Tuesday ratings have been good, it won’t get cancelled.

    So one of GCB or Scandal reeeeally has to be cancelled in addition to Misiing and Desperate Housewives. Those are the only slots available.

    Or ABC could premiere *only* two dramas in the Fall. Lost-cause Thursdays @ 8 and Sunday @ 9. Which is not a bad idea because they can then focus all their marketing efforts and maybe come up with a hit in Housewives’ Sunday spot or even break the spell on Thursdays cursed timeslot.

    30 Rock, Community, The Office, Parks – renewed for final seasons

    That is one bold prediction. I agree that that has to happen, but it won’t.

    30R and Comm, yes. Office & Parks, no.

  • Sel

    I need GCB to stay in my life! Enough with the Shonda’s crap!

  • Sabrina

    I think the buzz for Nikita has been better this season from last season. Steadily new viewers are being drawn in and if over the summer when people are allowed to catch up it should premiere to a higher demo for season 3. I don’t expect CW to promote it all especially if WB is its savior.

    Also apparently Nikita is a very strong lead in for 9pm news hour in major tribune/CW markets. Which gives it an advantage.

    And @brandy Nikita does very well in DVR #s from what I can see.

  • LOL

    I have two favorite networks ABC and CBS. CBS is pretty cut and dry, they renewed their strong line up already, and the shows that this site has going bye bye, will be gone, and the bubble shows will depend on a new comedy hour.

    Now by favorite network, ABC, needs to get their s…t together and decide if they are going to replace CBS or NBC in the future. Do you hope weak becomes stronger or try new ones, one is CBS thinking the other NBC thinking.

  • Sel

    Nbc – Keep: Are you there Chelsea ?
    Fox – My shows are renewed
    Cbs – Same here
    Cw – Keep: Nikita and Hart of Dixie

  • Tom

    The writing for HOD is at best sophomoric. The plot is simply another adaptation of the shopworn “unrequited love” theme. It even steals from “Green Acres” by moving the heroine from the Big City to a southern version of Hooterville. Worse, the scenes often are clumsily executed giving it the appearance of a student film project. I hate to say it, but it shouldn’t take much to find a better replacement.

  • John A

    What new viewers is Nikita getting? Its losing viewers each week. Not that total viewers matter anyway.

  • Bridget Kelly

    @ Robert
    Does ringer have even the slightest chance of being renewed? Because despite the ratings, it does have a very loyal fan base and it won the tv guide magazine guilty pleasure. The season 2 petition has almost 10,000 signatures and it was in the top 5 on e! Save one show.. I think all of these factors should count toward ringers renewal

  • Danny

    Deadline reports that ABC are not thrilled with their comedy pilots and CEO Paul Lee is concerned about a lack of procedurals…could be good news for Cougar Town and Scandal respectively.

  • Sabrina

    @johnA it is gaining viewers every week. They may not be watching live (like that is a big surprise for CW) but it is happening.

  • Ben Thompson

    My predictions:

    GCB (Cancelled)
    Scandal (Renewed)

    CSI: NY (Cancelled)
    CSI: Miami (Renewed)
    Rules (Renewed)
    Rob (Cancelled)

    All cancelled but Bobs Burger

    UAN (Cancelled)

    Nikita (Cancelled)
    Secret Circle (Cancelled)
    HOD (Renewed)
    Gossip Girl (Renewed)

  • Sabrina


    Ringer is dead. SMG makes a 100g an episode and I am guessing she won’t be interested in a pay cut.

  • Bunny


    If that’s true..I predict Cougar Town/Happy Endings will be paired up in a bad timeslot and will be burn off like Scrubs/Better off ted

  • Brandy

    Sabrina, according to this site Nikita gets only a 0.7 with DVr, while GG, Hod another’s get a 0.8-1.0 with DVr. Also, what new viewers is Nikita gaining when season one finale was 0.7 and season two premirere was 0.6 1.85 million viewers total and Fri May 4th was 0.4 1.20 million total viewers. And as to lead in, Nikita has local news or syndicated reruns as a lead in,which have I’ve heard beaten Nikita in ratings. How can you expect it premiere higher when shows loose viewers as they age and first seasons sometimes second seasons are ALWAYS the highest rated.?

  • RS

    I’ve never done a proposed schedule, but, with the information at hand as to what has been renewed at the CW and what appears to be coming, here goes:

    GG (13 eps)/HofD or First Cult (mid-season), Carrie Diaries – Tween night. There are, and will be, plenty of things for adults to watch on Mondays on other channels.

    90210, Beauty & the Beast

    Top Model, Selection – Again, lovely things on other networks for the rest of us. The ad campaign could be “Women selling themselves for fun & survival.”

    VD, Arrow – Arrow appears to be their best shot at a hit, and VD is the only thing compatible with it considering what they are renewing (other than SPN which is perfect, but on Friday). Since it is rumored that CBS is going to be stupid (unusual for them) and move Persons of Interest, we geeks will be free to follow Big Bang (TV off for half an hour if Rob comes back) with Arrow.

    Secret Circle (13 eps)/Cult, SPN – Unlike people who say that SC will do worse than Nikita on Friday, I disagree. SC has a small chance at garnering the SPN audience (and what show wouldn’t want that – we are bat ** crazy, but fiercely loyal). The ad campaign for SC should be “We hired new writers. Really.” I would have tried the show, but I heard that adults who previewed it were laughing at parts that were not supposed to be funny, and I didn’t care enough to confirm it. Cult and SPN would be a perfect reason to stay home on Friday. If SC does well, Cult would replace something else that fails.

    Only 4 new shows to promote in the fall and a couple mid-season options.

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