'Fringe' Sold Into Off Net Syndication On Science

Categories: 1-Featured,Broadcast TV

Written By

May 23rd, 2012

Fringe has been sold into non-exclusive off-network syndication on Science, a cable network owned by Discovery Communications. Being non-exclusive means Fringe may also be sold elsewhere, and the chatter is circling the usual suspects of Netflix, Hulu and Amazon.

Those who doubted whether Warner Brothers slashing their license fee to get another 13 episode fifth season would pay off may wish to rethink that reasoning. Or double down with it and go extra crazy in our comments.

Fire away.

  • Akihironihongo

    I hope science does a marathon of the entire series when it ends. I would watch the entire thing.

  • Richard Steven Hack

    Were123: “why do you care if FOX loses money?”

    Where did I say I care? I said it was stupid management. Period.

    “start typing “I think that x show is going to get cancelled” instead of saying “x show is doomed”.”

    Bull. If the ratings are crap, I will continue to say the show is doomed. Three “Dollhouse renewals” this year doesn’t change the fact that most of this site’s predictions were accurate – in excess of 90%. You play the odds and don’t expect miracles. It’s that simple.

    Besides which, “doomed” is just another word for “x show is going to be cancelled” – or don’t you understand English?

    “Accept it, you lost, now stop bitching about it”

    I did accept it. I acknowledged it here. If those shows had been cancelled, I can pretty much guarantee YOU wouldn’t be here “accepting it”.

    All those fans whose shows were cancelled are here NOT “accepting it”.

    So don’t tell me what to do, OK? I don’t work for you.

    “it is a no exclussive syndication deal, it could still be sold to some other channels, netflix, hulu, amazon, etc… so WB is making a smart move, making even more money than selling it to just one channel. So WB has now just justified season 5.”

    For the last time, I didn’t talk about WB. I talked about *FOX*. It is Fox who was stupid for giving Fringe another season. I’m fairly sure they could have made more money by putting something else in on Fridays. In fact, probably almost anything else.

    Clearly someone at Fox doesn’t agree with me. Fine. They have the numbers and I don’t. So everyone can claim (with equal lack of evidence since no one here has the numbers either) that I’m wrong. But I still think I’m not wrong and it was simply stupid management where some other factor than real numbers explains why Fox did this. The only thing I can think of that might explain it is that WB cut Fox in on the (hypothetical) syndication profits in exchange for another season to raise the value of those (hypothetical) syndication profits.

    “Fringe makes around 2.4 million per episode, thus a final 5th season has profit.”

    Bullcrap. You don’t know what the ad revenue is. That’s what counts. Even if Fox got the show for FREE, if the ad revenue doesn’t come in to cover the OTHER costs of airing the show (promo, whatever), it’s a loss. If the ad revenue turns out to be less than some other show they could have put in there, it’s an opportunity cost – a real loss.

    I don’t know the numbers and neither do you. What we DO know is that Fox said they were LOSING money on Fringe as it stood this season. Sure, if the fee is cut, maybe that changed. But with Fringe definitely going to do even lower ratings in the fall, if Fox bet on making a profit from the ad rates as they stood with the lower fee, they are likely to find they don’t make that with even lower ratings.

    “while finding a show that can get even higher ratings than Fringe.”

    Which wouldn’t have been hard this season. Hell, Human Target last year ended its run with a 2.3 18-49! And that was on the cancellation list practically all year! Yet Fringe with a .9-1.0 is going to be more profitable regardless of the fee?

    No way. Something else was going on, some other deal was made. But I believe Fox simply decided not to bother with re-arranging Friday so they didn’t have to worry about it. It’s a perennially bad night, and making a deal with WB, especially when WB was being aggressive at fee cutting, was easier than actually developing a show or a schedule for that night.

    That’s my guess. The same or something similar probably applies to Body of Proof (although not on a Friday) and for the CW, probably Nikita, which was.

  • Richard Steven Hack

    To clarify, what I think Fox and the other networks did was “punt”: accept an extremely low rated show and the resultant low ad revenue simply because it was cheaper than developing a show that COULD increase the ad revenue under the conditions they perceived applied (i.e., Fridays for Fox and the CW, and some other reason for Body of Proof.)

    Which in my mind is stupid management. But there’s no shortage of stupid management in this industry, as we all know. Look at the CW.

  • Tillman123

    Wow, so fringe gets syndicated and people still TRASH the show, god get over it already!!!!! The show got renewed for Christ sakes!!! Just shut up and move on!!!!!

  • SpenB

    I would like to see one hater come out and plainly admit that they were wrong. About renewal and syndication.

  • Eric_Philly

    Here’s hoping that they air this back-to-back with Firefly!

  • thesnowleopard

    Your posts are signal examples of why Fringe fans have such a reputation on here for being wingnuts. Knowing about the existence of a channel called “Science” is a measure your scientific literacy? Really? And here I’ve been watching this whole network of channels called…oh, what is the name? That’s right! “PBS”. And on it, you can find all kinds of stuff, shows called things like “Nature” and “NOVA” about *real* science that have probably been on longer than most Fringe fans have been alive.

    Look, some of us are old enough to remember arguing about the dubious science on The X-Files. Just because we can’t be bothered to do it with the equally ridiculous “science” on Fringe doesn’t make us scientifically illiterate. And being syndicated on a channel called “Science” hardly qualifies Fringe as hard SF.

  • Patrick G.

    I never doubted that “FRINGE” would sell into syndication. That’s why Waner Brothers kept cutting their fees for FOX. They probably had some advance indication of the syndication sale before the final fifth season was even announced. I’m sure that WB will also reap back their expense to produce the show from DVD sales, which from what I’ve heard are rather good. Whatever losses they took in cutting their fees for FOX will more than be made up for in these ways ;)

  • were123

    “But I still think I’m not wrong and it was simply stupid management where some other factor than real numbers explains why Fox did this”

    And that, my friend, is the purest arrogance that someone can have.
    Come one, there are other factors on show renewals than jsut mere numbers! Proof? Fringe, Nikita and BoP and you may call them Dollhouse-esque renewals, but hey! There are plenty of those commings! That’s why I’m telling you to be more careful, nothing is for certain. I thought too that BoP would be cancelled and it got renewed! But I never, ever said it was doomed, that discourages people and look what happened! I stopped watching an entire season of a show that I love just because I thought that it would be cancelled as I followed the numbers, but it didn’t! It’s comming back! But now I have to catch up.
    So my real trouble with people like you is not that you make predictions, it’s that you are too headstrong. I did accept at a point that Fringe might be cancelled (luckily, it wasn’t), but you were never able to do otherwise. It gets to my nerves people who are not opened minded, and I know this is just about tv shows, yet it’s annoying to listen to the same track over and over and over again.
    In by the way, my understanding of English is just fine, if I lack some grammar is because it’s not my native language, however I can perfectly understand what I read and what I hear

  • Data

    @Richard Steven Hack: I’m sorry, I forgot there are people on the internet that need smilies in order to get “sarcasm”. I’m a devoted Fringe fan since episode 1, however you don’t need to get too invested in convincing people that season six is not going to happen. Everyone with common sense is aware of that – even me. So, predict away…

  • T


    “What we DO know is that Fox said they were LOSING money on Fringe as it stood this season.”

    Just because they said it doesn’t mean it’s true. That statement was made right before negotiations for S5 started. It was most likely a bargaining chip to get WB to cut its fee.

  • John A

    And FOX said they made money on Terra Nova yet that was cancelled. U cant believe these Network execs.

  • AO’s Sock Puppet Account

    thesnowleopard is someone so blinded by insane hatred that she has lied about ratings numbers in the past. No one should lend any credence to her rants.

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