'Body Of Proof' Outruns Cancellation Bear In The Renew / Cancel Index's Biggest Prediction Miss This Season

Categories: Broadcast TV

Written By

May 14th, 2012


A few weeks ago I asked our readers to guess what would be the Renew / Cancel Index's biggest prediction goof of the season. (results below)

Harry's Law led by a small margin in the poll over having a likely or certain renewal predicted show get cancelled. We know what happened to Harry's Law, and no show predicted as likely or certain renewal was canceled.

With all the broadcast renewal and cancellation results in for scripted shows (except for final word on Rules of Engagement, which wouldn't be a big miss regardless of what happens), the renewal of Body Of Proof was clearly the biggest miss among my predictions this season.

Body Of Proof didn't run very fast, but it was faster than all the canceled ABC shows, which earned it another season instead of being a meal of the Cancellation Bear.

How did Body Of Proof get renewed with such low ratings relative to the rest of ABC's scripted shows? Not clear to me yet, but if I can figure it out, I'll incorporate that into future year's prediction methods.

Note to whiny/crazy Fringe fans, I had the show predicted as a "toss up" all season. Sure, no guts, no glory, but apparently all the whining from crazy fans!


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Note that Robert's Bubble Watch predictions were similar, but not exactly the same, this was just covering my predictions.

 
  • Kris

    I still am scratching my head on how ABC decided to keep Body of Proof over GCB.

  • John A

    @RSH your constant Whining about Fringe being renewed is so annoying. Just give it up. As Bill said you were wrong.

  • RC

    Crazy as it seems, Body of Proof IS airing in many European countries in prime time spots, along with The Mentalist, Castle, NCIS and the CSI-series – which are about the biggest USA-produced procedural hits in Europe. Nonetheless, even if Body Of Proof fares (a lot) better than the usual daytime, weekend or late-night schedule filler (a lot of the CW-series, FOX-animated series, most primetime soap operas and almost all of the comedy-series), it has not reached a Nr. 1 status anywhere.

    Judging on the number of networks airing Pan Am (which was cancelled in almost just as many), that was a way bigger hit than Body of Proof – just proving the point that international sales do account to some extent, but aren’t make-or-break-arguments (just yet).

    I do think, however, that in the near future, international sales and co-productions will become more important, just as we saw with movie releases. Spielbergs’ & Jacksons’ hit movie ‘Tintin’ was released in the USA almost 6 months after its worldwide premiere. In that particular case, the USA did not even matter. Could it be that, because Disney (Buena Vista) has standing deals with a lot of the major European broadcasters, ABC needs more international hits?

  • Brian

    I think some of your facts are wrong, it may have a lower number in that Stupid Demo BS , but Body Of Proof weekly averaged much higher number in millions of viewers than many of ABC’s shows,so they made the right decision..Glad it has been renewed..Great Show!
    So much for all your predictions! Ha!

  • John A

    Such stupid childish comments. How many shows did they predict cancelled and were?

  • Jayce

    How is it such a surpirse Body of Proof was renewed? It had 10 million views at the end and the show was left with a cliffhanger!!!!!!!!!

  • Michael

    I think the problem is that your system doesn’t take into account that rare case where a show has been doing well and suddenly does poorly in the last 3 or 4 episodes or a show has been doing poorly and suddenly does well in the last 3 or 4 episodes. On the flip side, there was Secret Circle, which everyone thought would be renewed until the last few episodes, although in that case, you seemed to recognize that it might be cancelled.

  • SJ

    I wasn’t all that surprised. It’s post-DWTS average was ~1.9. That’s bad, but it’s not that horrible.

    Why do some people think the show got renewed because ABC wanted one procedural on the air? Has everybody – including Deadline’s Nellie Andreeva – forgotten about Castle, which has been on the air for 4 years now?

    Anyway, the show got a new lease on life. I hope viewers tune in this time and keep the show at or near a 2.0 average (1.5 if on Friday) and who knows, maybe ABC will take it all the way to syndication eventually.

  • SJ

    As for international success, the series got off to a good start in Germany, but dropped quickly after. It ended up getting moved from a broadcast network, where it originally aired, to cable. I believe Germany is the second biggest European market after the UK.

  • Buddy

    I feel like Body Of Proof’s renewal may be one of those chance renewals due to unconventional scheduling needs. For example, the return of Better Off Ted or V to plug the Dancing with the Stars gap on Tuesdays in Winter. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s where Body Of Proof ends up. After the failure of The River, ABC might avoid trying to launch a limited format series again and instead give fans a few extra hours of a fledgling series with supposed strong international sales. Does anyone think it will actually be on the Fall schedule?

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Bill Gorman

    “I think the problem is that your system doesn’t take into account that rare case where a show has been doing well and suddenly does poorly in the last 3 or 4 episodes or a show has been doing poorly and suddenly does well in the last 3 or 4 episodes. On the flip side, there was Secret Circle, which everyone thought would be renewed until the last few episodes, although in that case, you seemed to recognize that it might be cancelled.”

    That certainly could be the case, and it has me thinking about it.

    Not only do sharp late season swoons or upticks screw with the way I interpret the data, they happen so rarely it’s hard to build any data or experience to evaluate them.

    I think what’s likely is that I will be extra sensitive to them next season and not discount them as I did this season. While I can’t evaluate them well, it still won’t be the first time I’ve seen it happen.

  • Rebecca

    So Happy that Body of Proof was renewed…I thought for sure it would be cancelled…Love the show and surprise endings

  • bhagya

    bop does very well internationally and the show is produced by abc studios

  • AO

    For dedicated bargain hunters, there was a week where shoppers could get Body of Proof S1 DVD’s for $0.00 with a manufacturer’s coupon from one of Target or Best Buy (I think it was Target but am not sure). I would guess that they moved a lot of DVD’s that week.

  • AO

    Richard Steven Hack said,

    “So someone needs to explain to me why Nikita was renewed. Does the CW really expect to run Nikita at ratings at or below .4-.5 for the next TWO seasons in order to get to syndication?”

    My thinking is that the CW is aware of their limitations. There’s a limit to what they can actually do to turn things around. Ideally, they would keep TVD, SPN and maybe 90210. They would cancel the rest, bring in 12-14 new shows and as soon as one failed then they would bring the next one off the bench. And they wouldn’t stop until they had the best line-up possible that was pulling in averages of at least 1.0. But of course no pilot is a guarantee and they simply can’t afford that many new shows.

    Knowing that what they had was differing degrees of bad, they dumped the worst Ringer and the show that was the biggest risk, which was ironically TSC. TSC underperformed versus Nikita (2010-11) in that Thursday slot all year, so if they had renewed it, then what would they have done with it? Maybe it could have grown, maybe it could have done better on a different night, but the likelier scenario was that it wouldn’t. Their obvious option was to put it on Fridays and expect it to do worse next year than Nikita had done this year. Given that choice, I can see where they decided to just leave Nikita where it was hoping it would pull at least 0.4 and maybe improve a 0.1 after lapsed fans saw that it had been renewed or new people gave it a try.

    Also, with the ratings so bad overall, I can see where they could be giving more weight to other factors. Paid downloads, International Sales, DVD, possibly online presence (to some degree). They’re getting a lot of extra revenue from Netflix, which helps to subsidize them for a couple more years, but after that they could be done as a Network. With Nikita closer to syndication numbers, they may have just figured to get it those numbers whether it was deserving (going to be worth it) or not. And it seems like it fits with Pedowitz’ goal of moving to a less teenage programming image. Renewing it was probably figured to be the worst of several bad options.

  • Carrie

    I love BOP. I never get to watch it on the scheduled night so I watch it through Comcast On Demand. I’m not sure how the ratings work or if watching it through On Demand is picked up in the ratings, but glad it is going to stay on the air. I also loved CSI Miami…guess I am one of few :(

  • KevinSW

    I dunno why everyone seems to be attacking Bill for no reason. I saw the ratings, I was convinced it was canceled as well. Once the season ended, i removed it from my ” to watch” list because after the ratings it has been having I didn’t see it coming back for a third season.

    I was shocked as anyone else (who wasn’t in denial) to hear it got renewed. Even my friend was like ” are you serious?”. The ratings weren’t good, it was the lowest Rated Drama of the season, (ahead of the obviously canceled River, Missing and Pan Am of course)

    Why ABC renewed it, is a mystery, i dunno about European markets, I think Pan Am was doing WAY better than Body of proof in that department.

    Nobody is really sure WHY it got renewed but it did.

    I was doubting Up All Night more than anyone i think, but everyone was certain it was getting renewed and it did. Nikita as well.

    there will be curve balls, it’s to be expected, Some networks make odd moves but don’t sit here and say that you know why. Most of us complain and rant because of what we read, or what we THINK we know.

    Bill and Robert has been doing this for How Long? They can only base their statistics on past experiences and NOT on favorites or not.

    With that being said, Nice job this year guys, i can say i agree with so much that was predicted, sure the outcome was a bit odd, but we can’t get em all right.

    Here’s to a new season, filled with predictions, surprises and those die hard fans in Denial.

  • Riff Rafferty

    How did Body Of Proof get renewed with such low ratings relative to the rest of ABC’s scripted shows? Not clear to me yet

    Unsurprising. Not many things are.

    and no show predicted as likely or certain renewal was canceled.

    More history revisionista crap. “House” was CANNED. Shore was trying hard to get a 9th season.

    Get over yourself, princess. You’re not that important.

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