NBC Renew/Cancel Wrap: 'Harry's Law,' 'Awake,' 'Best Friends Forever,' 'Are You There, Chelsea?' Canceled; 'Community,' '30 Rock,' 'Whitney,' 'Up All Night' Renewed

Categories: Cancel/Renew Index,Cancel/Renew NBC Shows

Written By

May 15th, 2012

Click this link for the latest NBC renewal / cancellation information:

Our Renew / Cancel Index predicts potential renewal or cancellation for scripted broadcast primetime shows by the end of the 2011-12 season in May, 2012. (includes results from January 2- May 13, 2012):

Program Status Renew/ Cancel Index
Prime Suspect* canceled 0.47
Bent* canceled 0.52
Best Friends Forever* canceled 0.58
The Firm* canceled 0.61
Harry's Law canceled 0.61
Free Agents * canceled 0.66
The Playboy Club * canceled 0.67
Chuck (F)* final season complete 0.69
Awake canceled 0.72
Are You There, Chelsea?* canceled 0.90
Grimm (F) renewed 0.92
Whitney* renewed 0.96
Community renewed 0.97
30 Rock renewed 0.98
Parenthood* renewed 1.00
Up All Night* renewed 1.01
Parks & Recreation renewed 1.10
Law & Order: SVU  renewed 1.12
Smash renewed 1.46
The Office  renewed 1.57


Harry's Law fans would have descended on our site like biblical locusts were the show renewed, but of course it wasn't going to be.  Instead we had the executive producer of the show claiming we have far more power than we actually do.

Will the Harry's Law cancellation convince the doubters that total viewership is completely meaningless in broadcast primetime? A networks top total viewership show (but nearly lowest adults 18-49 rated show) was canceled. Doesn't get any more definitive than that. Except perhaps for the crazy.

As it turned out, I predicted every NBC show renewal or cancellation correctly for the season, most well in advance.

Unlike other bears, our cancellation bear hibernates during the summer. With that the Index bids the 2011-12 NBC season adieu, there will be no more NBC Renew / Cancel posts until September.

The Renew / Cancel Index above includes results beginning January 2, 2012. How did NBC's shows stack up based on their Fall results? Click here.

*shows no longer on the air have their Renew/Cancel Index "frozen" at the point they left the schedule.


  • :oops: - certain to be cancelled by May, 2012
  • :cry: :cry:- more likely to be cancelled than renewed by May, 2012
  • :| :| :| - toss up between renewal or cancellation by May, 2012
  • :) :) :) :) - more likely to be renewed than cancelled by May, 2012
  • :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: - certain to be renewed by May, 2012

The Renew/Cancel Index is the ratio of a scripted show's new episode adults 18-49 ratings relative to the new episode ratings of the other scripted shows on its own network. It's calculated by dividing a show's new episode Live+Same Day adults 18-49 average rating by the Live+Same Day new episode average of all the new scripted show episodes on the show's own network. The network's average ratings in the calculation are not time weighted (ex. hour long shows are not weighted twice what 30 minute shows are).

(F) -Fridays: Shows airing on Fridays were renewed with significantly lower than average Indexes.

How would the Renew / Cancel Index Have Done Predicting Last Season's Scripted Show Fates? Check out how the Renew / Cancel Index predicted renewals and cancellations from the 2010-11 broadcast television season.

  • Holly
  • Holly

    Oops, sorry about the formatting…or lack thereof, but the link still works

  • Mickey 1.0


    On average only 31% of new shows make it to a second season. No wonder people are wary about becoming invested in new shows. Which probably doesn’t help shows survive to a second season.

  • Chris

    Whitney isn’t what I’d call renewed. It’s what I’d call “Friday night canceled”. :D

  • Jason

    Really sad about Awake not making it at least two seasons :(
    Also, CSI: Miami being cancelled over CSI: NY, what a joke! It’s had a good run, so I’m not mad. Guess I’ll have to get my Caruso like fix watching NTSF:SD:SUV::

  • Patrick G.

    @ Bill…Why does the cancellation bear only seem to eat (and reference) NBC shows and not the other networks’ programs? I thought he was a TVBTN mascot for everything, but I’ve noticed that he only seems to eat NBC. What’s the story here?

    And any word yet on “SMASH”? How many episodes did its second season order receive, and when will it air? This is now the ONLY series I watch on NBC, so I would like to know? Thanks ;)

  • HERB

    Maria Balo and Patrick Wilson are the best actors on all of TV. Both are gone. Makes you wonder what stupid America knows about talent. 2 and 1/2 men is about as far or as much as they can digest. What a SAD bunch. Know they will like ” Ice Monkeys Of The Congo.”

  • HERB

    Sorry, I meant Patrick Wilson. I guess I’m the pot.

  • HERB

    One more day. My Super Bowl. POI – The Finale. Zoe and Any Acker in the same show. WOW!!!

  • The End


    Excuse my late response, and just to correct you I have nothing against Harry’s Law. Infact I didn’t even speak about the show or the cast until the producer and star came out with unfounded, senseless, arrogant comments about this website and their show. If anything I knew beyond a doubt this show had no future on NBC months ago, much like Bill and Robert and others correctly predicting this shows demise.

    But rest assured this show wasn’t even on my radar until that point in time, if anything it was just another show on the network and nothing more. I if anything thought the shows cancellation was karma if anything and found it kinda funny. Nothing against the show but as explained above, this show simply did not appeal to younger viewers and it was only a matter of time before it was cancelled, the show in general was flawed in that respect. You need to appeal to both the younger and older generations, otherwise you’l simply be cancelled. They didn’t do that.

    I respect that you’re upset that your show has been cancelled, but to me it’s ancient history, it was months ago even. At least to me anyway, I had to wait months for official confirmation of the shows demise.

    Hope this explains my point of view. Sorry if you don’t agree, but I won’t be speaking about Harry’s Law further, you’re welcome to aim a comment about ratings at me here or anywhere really if you see me comment though.

  • Vin

    Hi Bill,
    I was just wondering is fear factor cancelled again?

  • faye king


  • Rebecca

    @Patrick G
    I think Bill said a while back that the bear appears with NBC r/c index posts because NBC comes first on the page ahead of the other networks (I don’t know why…alphabetically NBC would come last, after ABC, CBS, CW and FOX, but that’s how it is).

    And I heard or read that Smash is being held until mid-season (or perhaps earlier if something flops and gets yanked off the schedule sooner). I don’t know about number of episodes. Someone may have said 15? I don’t remember where.

  • Randi Morris

    When they move a good show like Harry’s Law to a Sunday night time slot, it’s pretty clear Hollyweird doesn’t like the show and wishes it an early demise. It’s a great show – who on earth watches How I Met Your Mother? (yawn) – they must have great connections.

    Back to Netflix I trot.

  • Riff Rafferty

    Will the Harry’s Law cancellation convince the doubters that total viewership is completely meaningless in broadcast primetime?

    No, it will finally convince us why NBC is a 4th-place network.

    Congrats, TBTN. You did it. You finally succeeded in getting the best show on NBC off the air. (Along with all the other scripted shows NBC didn’t have an ownership stake in, but why bring that up, right?) Give yourselves a pat on the back for a job well done. You win. You win the internets. And replaced with such an exceptional, high-quality show as “Fashion Star” too. Huge super smash hit. 47% r******n of the lead-in this week. Gonna be a massive time period improvement. Oh, except of course you won’t be reporting on that because it won’t be on the index. When the inevitable “Ouch! NBC Finishes The Season In 5th Place Behind Univision!” article gets posted on Deadline, I hope NBC sends you a thank you note for helping to make it possible. I’m not sure who will be sending it because of course the execs who cancelled “Harry’s Law” and put on a show about a monkey will be fired by that point. But someone hopefully will.

    (P.S. Alan Wurtzel, don’t open your mouth again. If your horrible bosses don’t agree with you, then I guess there’s no reason for you to speak.)

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Bill Gorman

    “Congrats, TBTN. You did it. You finally succeeded in getting the best show on NBC off the air.”

    As noted, we are more powerful than you can possibly imagine!

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Bill Gorman

    “@Patrick G
    I think Bill said a while back that the bear appears with NBC r/c index posts because NBC comes first on the page ahead of the other networks (I don’t know why…alphabetically NBC would come last, after ABC, CBS, CW and FOX, but that’s how it is).”

    Rebecca is correct, when I post the networks in alphabetical order, NBC’s is the last in line (and so the newest) and so it appears at the top of the column (which is in order of publication date/time).

    The bear wants to be on top.

    As to why not put bears in every post? The bear does not wish to be overexposed.

  • Andy

    I am glad that Parenthood was renewed. I think it’s the best show on any network. I did enjoy The Firm and Awake, but I knew they were both doomed to gather a large audience.It seems like shows that have a continuing storyline don’t score high in the ratings. Any more news about Jericho coming back on Netflix?

  • Jon

    Wallace is absolutely correct on Harry’s Law. There is no way to grow your viewership when you out right insult/mock half of all potential viewers in the first episode. Then you layering on implausibility of it all,and tack of the obvious pandering…

    I’m still surprised the show got past the first season, I guess it shows what falling star power can get you = 2 seasons.

  • Jenny

    @ Riff Rafferty
    Posted May 17, 2012 at 9:34 AM
    This site causes bubble shows to be cancelled when media buyers (who, let the record show, are among the dumbest people you will ever meet) come here and see “Certain to Be Cancelled” — and then don’t want anything to do with it.


    Of course what do you expect from a site that marks shows as not just “Certain to Be Cancelled” but flat-out “Cancelled” months before the network even makes that decision themselves.

    WOW, @ Bill Gorman @ Robert Seidman tvbythenumbers and the Cancellation Bear
    Congratulations. You are gaining even more power, now you control the Media Buyers and Advertisers, where will you stop? Will you control the universe?
    You are Jedi Knights. No one can stop you; their only hope is to slow you up.
    No show can stand against you, “You can’t win, (poorly rated Television shows). Strike me down, and I will become more powerful than you could possibly imagine.” Just the same as Obi wan Kenobi to Darth Vader.

    more proof of tvbythenumbers super powers:


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