Bubble Watch: 'Whitney' Doesn't Look Good; 'Don't Trust The B----' Looks Worse

Categories: Bubble Watch

Written By

November 25th, 2012

Not many changes from last week. I did finally downgrade Don't Trust the B---- to certain cancellation.My gut says that the show isn't as certain of a cancellation as my eyes would have me believe looking at the ratings. My secret's out: I trust my eyes more than my gut.

Whitney's ratings are horrible, but with only one data point last week I didn't want to jump to judgement last week and with this week's even more horribly rated episode (haven't seen the finals yet though) airing on Thanksgiving Eve, it should probably be tossed out in terms of scoring Whitney's prospects. So I've left it on the bubble for another week. hat said: the ratings, they aren't any good and wacky Olympic style scoring won't be a factor soon and if you want to go ahead and translate the status to "likely cancellation" immediately, nobody is going to call you a dope.

Why are some shows with bad to kinda eh ratings listed as likely or certain renewals despite the bad and kind of eh ratings? It's the syndication gods. The theory goes that shows that will end the 2012-13 TV season only one more season away from having ~88 episodes considered to be the minimum threshold for stripped (Mon-Fri) syndication will be shepherded along to syndication pretty much no matter how bad the ratings are.

So why is Nikita on the bubble then? It will end this season only one season shy of the episodes necessary for stripped syndication. It's not that I'm trying to rattle Nikita's fans' cages -- it's just the ratings are so bad I find that I'm not a devout believer in the syndication gods! But I believe enough that Nikita won't go any lower than "on the bubble" even if it starts pulling 0.0 adults 18-49 ratings.

Speaking of "on the bubble" the cable renew/cancel status list is on the bubble of renewal and cancellation by me. A "Save That List" petition on Facebook probably won't make a difference. But it couldn't hurt!

When it comes to bubble status, like the Renew/Cancel Index we're focusing on the likelihood that a show will be renewed **for next season** (2013-14).  Certain shows are toss-ups where based on the ratings, the renewal decisions could go either way and not be surprising.

Here, “canceled” is used interchangeably with “won’t be renewed for next season” and is not meant to imply a show will be yanked off the schedule in the current season though obviously the two outcomes are not mutually exclusive. The semantics police and lawyers should feel free to break out the handcuffs and plead their cases in the comments. 

This Isn't The Renew/Cancel Index

Though the basic methodology is the same (intra-network relative ranking of shows by adults 18-49 ),unlike the Renew/Cancel Index which predicts what would happen if the season ended now, Bubble Watch prognosticates about what will happen by May. The two are still usually closely aligned, and almost certainly very closely aligned towards the end of the season.

Note: only scripted shows that have aired at least one episode this season are in the table below.


Show Network Status
666 Park Avenue ABC Canceled
Last Resort ABC Canceled
Made in Jersey CBS Canceled
Partners CBS Canceled
Animal Practice NBC Canceled
Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 ABC Certain Cancellation
Emily Owens, M.D. CW Certain Cancellation
The Mob Doctor Fox Certain Cancellation
Vegas CBS Likely Cancellation
Ben and Kate Fox Likely Cancellation
Guys with Kids NBC Likely Cancellation
Up All Night NBC Likely Cancellation
Happy Endings ABC On The Bubble
Last Man Standing ABC On The Bubble
Malibu Country ABC On The Bubble
Nashville ABC On The Bubble
Neighbors, The ABC On The Bubble
Scandal ABC On The Bubble
CSI: NY CBS On The Bubble
The Good Wife CBS On The Bubble
The Mentalist CBS On The Bubble
90210 CW On The Bubble
Hart of Dixie CW On The Bubble
Nikita CW On The Bubble
Beauty and the Beast CW On The Bubble
The Mindy Project Fox On The Bubble
Chicago Fire NBC On The Bubble
Whitney NBC On The Bubble
Castle ABC Likely Renewal
Suburgatory ABC Likely Renewal
The Middle ABC Likely Renewal
CSI CBS Likely Renewal
Elementary CBS Likely Renewal
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Likely Renewal
How I Met Your Mother CBS Likely Renewal
Two and a Half Men CBS Likely Renewal
Bones Fox Likely Renewal
The Cleveland Show Fox Likely Renewal
Law & Order: SVU NBC Likely Renewal
Parks & Recreation NBC Likely Renewal
The New Normal NBC Likely Renewal
Grey's Anatomy ABC Certain Renewal
Modern Family ABC Certain Renewal
Once Upon a Time ABC Certain Renewal
Revenge ABC Certain Renewal
2 Broke Girls CBS Certain Renewal
Blue Bloods CBS Certain Renewal
Criminal Minds CBS Certain Renewal
Mike & Molly CBS Certain Renewal
NCIS CBS Certain Renewal
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS Certain Renewal
Person of Interest CBS Certain Renewal
Arrow CW Certain Renewal
Supernatural CW Certain Renewal
The Vampire Diaries CW Certain Renewal
Glee Fox Certain Renewal
New Girl Fox Certain Renewal
Raising Hope Fox Certain Renewal
Go On NBC Certain Renewal
Grimm NBC Certain Renewal
Parenthood NBC Certain Renewal
Revolution NBC Certain Renewal
The Big Bang Theory CBS Renewed
American Dad Fox Renewed
Bob's Burgers Fox Renewed
Family Guy Fox Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Renewed
Private Practice ABC Canceled/Final Season
Gossip Girl CW Final Season
Fringe Fox Final Season
30 Rock NBC Final Season
The Office NBC Final Season
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  • martine

    @Addy; Thats your opinion, and while thats important, its not shared by others, obviously. Sure, some good shows don’t make it, but they usually still have decent ratings, just not for their network. A show like Emily Owens, TSC or Ringer had abysmal ratings. No one of any age wanted anything to do with it.

  • Richard Steven Hack

    Martine: The problem with your assumption that Nikita won’t be worth much in syndication is that we don’t know that. Maggie Q is big in Asia. Who knows if a syndication deal in half the Asian countries might make the show profitable if it runs for the next five years there? We simply don’t know.

    Presumably the WB bean counters know what previously syndicated shows have done and what the indicators are whether a new show will do well.

    We also don’t know what the studio is charging for this and a likely next season of Nikita. It could be next to nothing. For the CW, that’s a win even if their ad rates are basically flat. It’s also one less show they need to replace next season, which lowers their new show development costs.

    Bottom line: Since Nikita should never have been renewed with LAST season’s ratings, clearly THIS season’s ratings are no longer relevant, even if, as Robert says, they go as low as 0.0.

  • Tambor

    “Beauty and the Beast ratings are inching up. So thats probably a renewal…but what about Nikita? Seriously has it occurred to them that even in syndication its not worth much?”

    As long as B&tB and Nikita are doing well turning profits and making money overseas they will both be back. Ratings don’t really matter on The CW that much. I heard Pedowitz only accounts the ratings for 20% of their decisions since the network owns most of its shows.

  • Brandy

    On CW my prediction is:Cult,Carries Diaries,Emily Owens MD,Beautyb& Beast cancelled( I love Beauty, but let’s be real,it hit 0.6 in episode three,lost half of audience from pilot in episode two and three,and it has low retention out of VD and is already doing worse than Nikita,Secret Circle in that slot and we know what happened to them).Plus Beauty’s ratings will possibly/Likley fall in Jan and spring like most shows.I think Nikita will get renewed but they really should cancel it.I believe Hart will get renewed-I really hope so-and 90210 will get a final shortened season.This will leave SPN,VD,Arrow,Nikita,HoD with full seasons & 90210 a short final season with four spots for new shows,one wich will a short season.

  • Sel

    My heart is truly bleeding right now.
    R.I.P. BITCH ;( ;(

  • MJDB

    Believe it or not, I would still have both Whitney and Guys With Kids On the Bubble. I know I sound crazy, but at first The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men’s pairing didn’t seem excellent (ratings wise at least, don’t like TBBT but love TAAHM)), but know a few weeks have settled in, and they’re both getting excellent ratings. Maybe the same thing will happen with Whitney and Guys With Kids.

  • Hillbilly

    I hope Alphas gets renewed. Want to see Gary rescue Bill & hold it over him. :)

  • Jane Elliot

    I’ve been thinking about syndication of late, because for the longest time I couldn’t figure out how shows with Good Wife or Nikita ratings could get a shot at syndication, even if they were in their third season. The more I thought about it, though, the more syndication made sense as a financing model.

    When it comes down to crunching numbers, if a show makes it through three seasons and gets cancelled, then all of the money that show lost during those three years (and most shows currently on TV lose money in their first airings) is gone with minimal, if any, possibility of recovery. On the other hand, if a show makes even the cheapest syndication deal imaginable, it still is making back some of the money it lost. Shows with awards might get a little bit more leeway because “classics” tend to have a bit more staying power (twenty years down the road, if The Good Wife is making it to Best of the 2010’s lists, there’s a chance people will still be trying to get a copy). Shows with cult status might get an extra bit of a chance because of shows like Firefly, which only got 14 episodes and is *still* making money for Fox’s TV production arm (and how many shows manage to get syndicated with 14 episodes?)

    Of course, some shows are cancelled after their third season. Unfortunately, while I know that list has been posted before, I can’t find it again. At any rate, I wonder how many of them are on networks that are unconnected with their production company (or, alternatively, how many of them are with the same production company, which would indicate that at least one is the anti-Sony.)

  • Raykov

    I have a feeling that The Good Wife will be renewed for a short final season. That way their episode count will be 100(+) and this will be one more year in wich CBS will have a high-quality drama in their hands.

  • J-Boy

    Poor Don’t Trust the Bitch in Apartment 23. It’s gangly name makes it hard to discuss on the internet. It’s such a good show! Krysten Ritter is amazing.

    I totally agree! I love Apt23! It’s actually considerably better that most of the comedic fare out there. 

    I will agree that it is probably toast however… if it gets the axe, I’ll be SAD! 

  • Michael

    @Raykov- a lot of critics no longer consider it “high quality” after the whole Kalinda mess, so that will be less of a factor in CBS keeping it.

  • Tony ^_^

    As long as “New Girl” returns next season… :D

  • SnakeTheCritic

    Whitney and Guys With Kids hurt my balls. Sorry, that’s incomplete my eyeballs. No comparison what so ever.

    Just added to my —
    Likely Cancellation
    The Good Wife and The Mentalist

    Chicago Fire is the one show on NBC I’m enjoying.

  • Hillbilly

    Posted November 25, 2012 at 11:40 AM

    I hope Alphas gets renewed. Want to see Gary rescue Bill & hold it over him. :)


    :oops: Wrong page. :oops:

  • Doug

    @JC – I don’t think you’re really watching Apt23 because The B hasn’t really lost her edge in any way.

    Anyway, this is semantics I know, but I really don’t understand your insistence on putting The Middle as likely renewal and not certain renewal. I can’t imagine any scenario in which The Middle doesn’t come back for next season.

  • rob60990

    “Two and a Half Men consistently pulls in around a 4.0 – why is it not listed under “Certain Renewal”?”

    Probably has to do with the fact that it is an aging show and the cast may not want to stick around. Same with How I Met Your Mother.

  • rob60990

    “Why has the middle been downgraded to likely renewel i’m sure it was certian renewl last week and thats where is should of stayed there isnt a chance in hell abc will cancel it unless their is some freak plummet.”

    Robert never downgraded The Middle. He always had it as a likely renewal while Bill has it as certain.

  • Anthony Parello (AP076)

    Posted November 25, 2012 at 11:20 AM
    “Beauty and the Beast ratings are inching up. So thats probably a renewal..”

    Total Viewers (in millions) 2.8 —>2.0—>1.9—>1.7—>1.8—>1.6

    Demo Viewers 1.2—>0.7—>0.6—>0.6—>0.7—>0.6

    In what world would this represent “inching up”. Possibly leveling off but not inching up and that will change as the year progresses so to say they will probably renew it is crazy talk.

    If anything the trajectory looks quite similar to that of Ringer and The Secret Circle and we all know how those shook out.

  • Tom

    @ Martine In what alternate universe are B&B’s ratings inching up? The last episode scored a 0.6 in the demo (-14% change) with 1.56 million (-15% change). B&B fell to a 0.6 rating on its third episode, so that’s about what I’s expect.

  • Tom

    @Anthony The Secret Circle didn’t drop to a 0.6 until its 18th episode. How is that in any way similar to B&B?

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