ABC: 'Last Man Standing' & 'Malibu Country' Fall To "Toss Up" For Cancellation Or Renewal

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

Written By

November 20th, 2012

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

Our Renew / Cancel Index predicts the network's decision on renewal or cancellation for scripted broadcast primetime shows by the end of the 2012-13 season in May, 2013. (includes results from September 17-November 18, 2012):

Program Status Renew/ Cancel Index
Don't Trust the B in Apt 23 :oops: 0.55
Happy Endings :| :| :| 0.62
Private Practice canceled 0.63
666 Park Avenue canceled 0.66
Last Resort canceled 0.67
Last Man Standing (F) :| :| :| 0.69
Malibu Country (F) :| :| :| 0.74
Scandal :| :| :| 0.82
Castle :) :) :) :) 0.84
Nashville :| :| :| 0.85
The Neighbors :| :| :| 0.87
The Middle :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.06
Suburgatory :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.09
Revenge :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.13
Once Upon A Time :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.37
Grey's Anatomy :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.45
Modern Family :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.98

With their relatively high premiere ratings of 2.0 and 2.3 for adults 18-49 on a Friday, Last Man Standing and Malibu Country looked like they might be a Friday night ratings surprise duo. Sadly for them, that surprise lasted all of 3 weeks. With last Friday's 1.4 ratings for both, they've now fallen into the "toss up" range for cancellation or renewal by the end of the season. And if their ratings are not done falling, that prognosis may change again very soon.

Sophomore sitcom Don't Trust The B---- In Apt. 23 didn't start well this season, and its ratings completely tanked in its second and third episodes. It's now certain to be canceled, but it's been in the headline of this post enough times to give it a break this week. Because it's not a rookie, it's unlikely to be pulled from the schedule before its (19, thanks Dan) ordered episodes air.

With rookies Last Resort and 666 Park Avenue both canceled last week, ABC probably won't make any more drama cancellation moves until the end of the season, but that won't prevent me from continuing to make predictions!

Since Sony (and ABC) are likely to move heaven and earth to get a fourth season for Happy Endings somewhere, even with it's terrible ratings it's going no lower than a "toss up". May the syndication gods have mercy on the cancellation bear's soul.

Even with full season orders for this season, ABC's mediocre rated 10pm dramas Nashville and Scandal could be either canceled or renewed by the end of the season. Similarly rated Castle, already syndicated, is more likely to be renewed than canceled. Read more about that here.

Better to Follow The Bear, Than Be Chased By Him. This season you can follow the Cancellation Bear on Twitter via @TheCancelBear. The Cancellation Bear will retweet all the Renew/Cancel Index post titles and links as well as engage in a little more back and forth banter than we do on our standard @TVbytheNumbers Twitter feed.


*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, 2013
  • :cry: :cry:- more likely to be cancelled than renewed by May, 2013
  • :| :| :| - toss up between renewal or cancellation by May, 2013
  • :) :) :) :) - more likely to be renewed than cancelled by May, 2013
  • :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: - certain to be renewed by May, 2013

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 past television seasons.

  • Nick


    8: Body of Proof
    9: Revenge
    10: Rise & Fall (new)

    8: Shark Tank
    9: SHEILD (new)
    10: Castle

    8: The Middle
    8:30: Suburgatory
    9: Modern Family
    9:30: Knock Knock (new)
    10: Birthright (new)

    8: Grey’s Anatomy
    9: Burns & Cooley (new)
    10: Nashville

    8: Now What? (new)*
    8:30: Last Man Standing
    9: Primetime: What Would You Do?
    10: 20/20
    Sat (midseason)-
    8: Shark Tank (R)
    9: Castle (R)
    10: Body of Proof (R)

    7: AFHV
    8: OUAT
    9: Beneath (new)
    10: Zero Hour

    *Note: The camera format has not been released for “Now What?” and if it is not a multi-cam it is not a good fit for that slot. That’s a tentative scheduling on my part.

  • joethehobo

    I still think we need to wait until Family Tools and How To Live With Your Parents to call Happy Endings and Apartment 23.

  • Andrew

    yeah, there are way too many sitcoms on in the Tuesdays night hour from 9 to 10 across networks.
    & there is just no way for all of them to survive. period.
    unfortunately, ABC is the network taking the most of the beating here.
    I watch The New Normal, Don’t Trust the B, and the Mindy Project. but they are all on at the same time!
    another fact is that ABC waited until late October for Don’t Trust the B to return!
    & another fact, Don’t Trust the B is not available for viewing in the on demand feature on cable tv.
    It is as if ABC wants the show to fail!

  • ivan

    a lot of shows are on the bubble on abc seems like it will be a tough year for desicions for abc

  • tv#1


    Body of Proof
    The Neighbors/DWTS Results
    The Family Tools/DWTS Results
    Zero Hour/Mistresses

    The Middle
    Modern Family
    How to Live with your Parents (for the rest of your life)
    Happy Endings/Red Widow
    Don’t Trust the B—- in Apt 23/Red Widow

    Winter Wipe Out/ Happy Endings & Don’t Trust the B—- in Apt 23
    Grey’s Anatomy

    Same as Now

    Once Upon a Time

  • Keyser

    I agree that Last Man Standing should NEVER have made the casting changes and it seems that this season is trying to be a bit more edgier to compete with Two and a Half Men’s vibe of innuendo. They should have left it alone as it was setting up for some great stuff with the addition of Robert Forrester and Mike Rowe as Allen’s father and brother who moved to town last season to work on a construction project. They would have been great additions on a regular basis.

    They should never have recast Alexandra… and changing the day it’s on didn’t help.

  • Just Desserts

    I don’t get why The Neighbors and Nashville aren’t likely renewed yet? 2.0 is the new normal for ABC. :) hehe.

    As long as a show gets a two, ABC would probably still renew them. Considering that half their schedule is tanking and it’s expensive to produce that many a show, The Neighbors, Nashville, and Scandal are definitely up for renewal barring the fact that all new Spring shows somehow miraculously become hits.

  • rob60990

    “Season 2, it gets the best timeslot on ABC (after Modern Family). But, only half of the episodes aired behind a new Modern Family.”

    It only aired 5 episodes without a new Modern Family lead-in, not half.

    “The remaining half of Season 2 aired on nights when it was the only first-run episode of the night on ABC, everything else was repeats, plus it was against Idol. Yet the show still pulled 2?s.”

    The last 3 episodes were in the 1s.

    Man I love when fans make stuff up. :D

  • rob60990

    “I don’t get why The Neighbors and Nashville aren’t likely renewed yet? 2.0 is the new normal for ABC.”

    Both have fallen below a 2 a couple of times and they’re only in their first seasons.

  • Louise Fields

    I am so disappointed in the reviews for Malibu Country. It is a good family comedy and most of the comments are about Reba from people who do not like Reba. Her show could be a hit if ABC will give it time. The show cannot be all bad-after all ABC has been number one in the Friday night ratings from 8 until 10 oclock. The ratings will level off on any show when they are as high as Malibu Countrys was. Hope it hangs in there.

  • Just Desserts


    “Both have fallen below a 2 a couple of times and they’re only in their first seasons.”

    They’ve gotten 1.9’s and 1.8’s this season and in most cases, they’ve been adjusted up. If you look closely at the thing?, half of the shows are at risk and these two are at the boundary of renewal so it is very likely that they will be.

  • omabin

    One thing… How to live is a multicam so if any show should go to wednesdays it should be the family tools

  • Bill Gorman

    ““I don’t get why The Neighbors and Nashville aren’t likely renewed yet? 2.0 is the new normal for ABC.””

    No. ABC’s original episode scripted avg (counting all shows the same regardless of run time) is a 2.4 this season. A 2.0 show is 83% of that average.

    The mid-80’s is the heart of the “toss up” range, particularly for rookie shows.

    We likely won’t get a better read on any of these toss up shows until early 2013, when I reset the numbers to use just episodes after January 1. Then we’ll probably get a better look at prospects than we have now.

  • Ali

    There is only one problem, wouldnt what happened to Cougar Town happen to Happy Endings??

  • seks

    All of Happy Endings fans seem to be watching the leaked from Canada two days early leaks instead of watching on tv. Some fans, dont they realize they’re gonna kill a show they like watching it this way?? Then again, most of Happy Endings’ biggest fans probably don’t have a neilsen box anyway so I guess none of this really matters.

  • Ruan

    I don’t get it. I thought it was normal for Friday’s ratings to be lower.

  • mayorofsmpleton


    88-100 is a more attractive number for syndication. ‘Til Death had 81 but it can still be sold with that number. The belief that a show needs exactly 88 or more is perpetuated by the fact that MOST shows air 22 episodes per season and in the past many shows with middling ratings have limped to a fourth season renewal only to be canceled at that point (22×4=88). Said shows were still able to be sold into syndication (though probably for less of a profit than a show with over 100 episodes) so that’s where the notion of the “magic 88″ comes in.

    In other words, Happy Endings will be around 57 episodes this May. That’s 79 episodes with another season order of 22. That makes it a more attractive deal for Sony to drop the price ABC is paying them. Will it make more for Sony if it gets to 88? Yes. Will it make more if it reaches 100? Yes.

    Can Sony make it attractive enough for ABC to renew it to get closer to those numbers? Absolutely.

    They likely will.

    It’s not 88 — that’s just in the general area of where a should SHOULD be if they expect to get a decent deal. Shows with under 70 have gotten syndication deals in the past. It’s just less likely and not as profitable.

  • tv#1

    @ mayorofsmpleton

    Thanks for the info. I still think that Sony would be satisfied with 79 or 80 total episodes of Happy Endings. If it drags on any longer than that the ratings would most likely drop even lower, and that would, I believe, decrease the value of the series. So hopefully the ratings can stay consistent or on the off chance rise, so the fans can get another season. I know I would really like to see another season of HE.

  • Deek

    ABC has always seemed pretty big on Happy Endings despite it never really getting the best ratings. In their first seasons their ratings were about as bad as they are this season and were still renewed for a second season somehow. I think because it gets a lot of positive buzz from entertainment magazines and makes a lot of “best of” sitcom lists and I’m sure they like all the comparisons it gets to Friends. Kinda like how NBC hasn’t cancelled Community because of it’s cult following, despite it never doing very good ratings wise, though it looks like NBC is probably getting rid it of it after this year.

  • rob60990

    “I don’t get it. I thought it was normal for Friday’s ratings to be lower.”

    It is, that’s why at 1.4 ratings, both are toss-ups. During the week, they’d be certain cancellations.

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