CBS Orders Two More Episodes of 'Elementary', Cuts 'Vegas' Episode Order By One

Categories: 1-Featured,Broadcast TV

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November 15th, 2012

Deadline reports that CBS has ordered two additional episodes of freshman series Elementary, bringing its total episode order to 24. One of the extra episodes is due to the series landing the coveted post-Superbowl slot. Vegas lost an episode at the blackjack table. The network has cut its episode order by one, for a total of 21 episodes.

  • Hugh

    Never seen a 21 ep season before

  • Just Grand

    @The End

    I agree Moriarty needs to make some appearence. I have high hopes the second season(if renewed and I cant see why not) will flush him out. Such a good cast and solid episodes thus far. The game is afoot!

  • mayorofsmpleton

    Probably just has to do with budget for the season. CBS cuts as little as they have to of Vegas to pay for more Elementary. Cutting to 18 screams of “We’re going to cancel this in May.” 21 still seems like a sign of hope on their end. Keeps people from fleeing a “dead show walking.” I think CBS will still definitely cancel it but I can understand the strategy. If they cut it down to 18 or 19 the outcry online would immediately be “It’s dead.”

    Ordering 24 of Elementary makes sense. It ensures that if they continue that road it’ll reach higher than even 88 in 4 years… Ordering 24 each season gets it to 96. It also means more episodes POST Super Bowl Special to ride the inevitable upswing in viewership. That’s more bank to count on.

    They ordered an additional episode of TGW in seasons 1 and 2 as well… leaving it at 90 when season 4 ends. More than 88 is always more attractive when selling into syndication.

  • mayorofsmpleton

    There’s been a few. Off the top of my head Ally McBeal season 3 and Gilmore Girls season 1. Neither of which had any 2-hour episode that season either. Both produced 21 original hours.

    I’m sure there’s more.

  • John

    @Bill Not sure historical precedents from 17 years ago (i.e. Extreme getting cancelled in the same season that it followed a Super Bowl) are particularly relevant. I was 12 at the time, and though I *think* I was using the Internet at that time (I was an early adopter, even using text-based browsers–Netscape was released in October 1994), not many people were, and there certainly wasn’t readily-available video online at the time. Even if we ignore the differences between eras, a little digging reveals that the situations are not analogous. At all.

    Counting tonight, Elementary has already aired seven episodes, and it’s doing fairly well in the ratings. It’s not a monster hit or anything, but it’s doing fine, especially compared to almost every other new drama except Revolution (which may or may not be in a tailspin). Airing it post-Super Bowl seems to be a strategy to grow its existing viewership, which makes sense. It’s a good show, and I think airing a (presumably) standout episode to the largest possible audience will really help it.

    On the other hand, Extreme was airing its *pilot* after the Super Bowl. And because its ratings were poor, it was immediately put on hiatus before it was eventually canceled after airing just seven episodes. In fact, that was such a disaster that no one has aired a drama pilot after the Super Bowl since (the only pilots to air after a Super Bowl since are reality series Undercover Boss, as well as animated comedies Family Guy and American Dad).

    Extreme was only the most recent of a number of post-Super bowl pilots that flopped. In a particularly brutal stretch from 1984-1994, The Good Life, Davis Rules, Grand Slam, Hard Copy, The Last Precinct, and MacGruder and Loud were all canceled despite airing their pilots after the Super Bowl. The same fate befell Brothers and Sisters in 1979. The point is that every last one of those shows were airing their pilots after the Super Bowl.

    If we want to find an example of a show that wasn’t airing its pilot after the Super Bowl but was still canceled in the same season, we’re going to be looking for a long time: it’s never happened. There’s a first time for everything, but I wouldn’t bet on Elementary breaking that streak.

  • Bill Gorman

    @John, “Not sure historical precedents from 17 years ago (i.e. Extreme getting cancelled in the same season that it followed a Super Bowl) are particularly relevant. “

    Didn’t say it was. A question was asked. I answered it. Thanks for the detail.

    “I wouldn’t bet on Elementary breaking that streak.”

    Neither would I. Did I already note I have it predicted as “likely to be renewed”?

  • John

    @Bill Sorry, I didn’t mean to make it seem like I was attacking you or putting words in your mouth. I was getting at the “Extreme” talking point that I’ve seen on the Internet. As a regular reader of the Renew/Cancel Index, I knew that you have it as likely to be renewed. And no problem on providing the detail. It’s amazing how much one can learn (I didn’t know any of that beforehand) just by spending a few minutes on Wikipedia.

  • Networkman

    I just hope that CSI:NY gets a full season order with 22 episodes. Until CBS figures out what other drama they would like to pair with Blue Bloods, CSI:NY is the best option for the remainder of the season. It is a great anchor in the 9pm slot, helping CBS to remain competitive against Shark Tank and Grimm.

  • Nikki

    When we will we hear about Partners??

  • Holly


    When we will we hear about Partners??

    Probably never, at least officially. CBS will announce their midseason schedule with Friend Me on Mondays and Partners will simply disappear without being mentioned.


    Vegas dead.

  • mart

    I really want to like “Vegas”, but Dennis Quaid’s acting is really distracting. They should have hired “Longmire’s” Robert Taylor, he plays very similar character in “Longmire”, but he manages to make it likeable and someone you really root for.

  • BigBrotherFan

    It must be the theme of this season. Letting the losers play out for reasons of economics like the article on this site says. I can’t imagine CBS is in any hurry to have Vegas have a full slate of completed 21 episodes. I think they are likely buying some time IN HOPES of perhaps giving UNFORGETTABLE a proper promotional campaign or whatever replaces VEGAS in April.

    …Even watching THE MOB DR. I can’t understand why they didnt maybe alter a few scenes and or maybe film one or two scenes from last night. It could of worked as an okay wrap to the previous episodes. The only reason I assume they are letting it continue is the economic posts here. Otherwise Monday nights episode would of been a okay conclusion.

    Great so I have to put up with more episodes of Elementry!? CBS is sure doing whatever they can to see this one succeed! This isnt really taking advantage of the POST SUPER BOWL slot at all. I dont even watch POI or 2BG but heck I’m still shocked they where not given the post slot. They are proven performers with a great chance of gaining more viewers from SuperBowl. Elementry will see a BOOST but I think when it comes back next year (bold prediction, I know) it will be right back at hovering around the low 2’s and 2’s.

  • Hepha

    I also hope that CSI NY will get a 22-episode season ! Blue Bloods and CSI NY just perfectly fit together, so it would seem appropriate to give NY as much episodes as BB !

    For Vegas, no surprise since it’s getting nearer every week to cancellation ! As for Elementary, it’s quite odd. But post-Superbowl broadcasting and 24-episode season probably mean that CBS really wants it to become a hit. Not sure that it’ll work !

  • The End

    @Just Grand

    Indeed. I can see Moriarty being either a person in absolute power that Holmes can not definitely prove is responsible for some bad things going on(Yet). Or a mysterious man responsible for all manners of bad stuff that is too elusive to be caught or proven guilty by Holmes(yet).

    As this is modern day with modern day tech, some of the established facts about the character might need changing, keeping in line that he is of course the archenemy of Holmes.


    “21” is the title to Adele’s monster album, so I’m good with the Vegas count

  • LisaNeedsBraces


    This has been gone over in a separate thread. Only one first season, non pilot scripted has ever appeared after the SB (The John Larroquette Show) and the slot did nothing for it. Of the 9 scripted pilots that have premiered after the SB (excluding the two Fox cartoons w/The Simpsons) since 1970, 6 were canceled in the first season and a 7th was canceled within two seasons. The reason why no one can judge this situation is because the post SB slot became such a death spot for premiering new shows that, for the past almost twenty years, every network has aired at least a second season scripted show in the slot. And even with that, none of the recent scripted shows (that I’ve been able to find ratings for) have ever seen a ratings boost from the SB slot. It’s a media myth that gets repeated a lot as if it’s true (the post SB show is a blessing that makes a show successful!) when the actual history and numbers if anything, indicate the opposite.

  • POIFanatic

    YIKES!! How much can one stomach that boring, mundane numbness! Last Resort dumbs down every week, Elementary and Guys with Kids gets more episodes, Whitney begins its sophomore season. These are all the signs of the impending apocalypse, you guys!

  • Barbie

    @mayorofsmpleton, CSI:NY had 18 episodes last season, and it’s standing strong and alive. It doesn’t mean cancellation!

    I hope CSI:NY gets a full 22 episodes season too. The ratings are better than last season, especially in total viewers, and CBS obviously has hopes for the show, since it kept it instead of Miami. The thing is, CSI:NY has a loyal following that gives it the decent ratings for Friday nights. They don’t have that sort of guarantee with other shows. Are they willing to risk it? Hopefully not. Moving Elementary to Fridays would be murdering it!

    Also, I agree about moving Hawaii Five-0 to right after NCIS. Seems to be the best timeslot for it. They should do another crossover to introduce the new timeslot ;)

  • John

    @LisaNeedsBraces Interesting analysis. Assuming you’re right (and the little bit of research I just did seems to indicate that you are), then maybe CBS has the right idea here. If the Super Bowl isn’t a great launching pad for a brand new show, *and* it isn’t likely to significantly help an established hit that is already in at least its second season, then what’s left? Elementary is in its first season, and while it’s ratings (3.1, 2.6, 2.4, 2.2, 2.4, 2.2, 2.3) are likely good enough to get renewed anyway, this will be an interesting test case to see if the Super Bowl can help fledgling new shows. I wasn’t aware that the John Larroquette show was in a similar position, but it’s hard to know anything from one data point from almost 20 years ago. And for what it’s worth, that show made it to a fourth season. One thing I’m fairly certain about: the Super Bowl might not help Elementary, but I can’t imagine it would *hurt* it. As I said, it’s ratings are good enough on their own, especially when we consider the degree of support that CBS is giving it.

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