ABC: 'Happy Endings' Still A Toss Up To Be Canceled Or Renewed

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

Written By

December 11th, 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-December 9, 2012):

Program Status Renew/ Cancel Index
Don't Trust the B in Apt 23 :oops: 0.53
Happy Endings :| :| :| 0.60
Private Practice canceled 0.61
Last Resort canceled 0.66
666 Park Avenue canceled 0.66
Last Man Standing (F) :| :| :| 0.69
Malibu Country (F) :| :| :| 0.71
Castle :) :) :) :) 0.87
Nashville :) :) :) :) 0.88
Scandal :) :) :) :) 0.91
The Neighbors :) :) :) :) 0.92
The Middle :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.11
Suburgatory :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.12
Revenge :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.15
Once Upon A Time :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.43
Grey's Anatomy :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.49
Modern Family :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 2.10

The news that Happy Endings'  woeful ratings is sorely testing my rule that shows in their third season will fall no further than a "toss up" for renewal or cancellation because of the pull of the syndication gods. Having been burned twice by another low rated Sony sitcom ('Til Death), I'm still gunshy about moving it to "likely canceled". Call me "chicken". Heck, I'll call myself "chicken". Cluck, cluck!

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.

  • Bill Gorman

    “Hope you don’t mind if I don’t put too much stock in your predictions there Bill.”

    Just as long as you don’t mind if I keep taunting you and all the rest of the crazy fans with their heads in the sand.

  • TSC’s Revenge

    Just as long as you don’t mind if I keep taunting you and all the rest of the crazy fans with their heads in the sand.

    Not at all.  However, just remember… that’s a two-way street my friend!  :D   BTW, my head is not in the sand… I’m fully aware that Apt23 ratings will need to significantly improve to earn another season. I do however, think the cast and crew is in place that could make that a reality. 

    I will say…  is was probably a mistake for the show to start the season with a “Dawson’s Creek”, i.e. James Van Der Beek emphasis.  The strength of the show is June & Chloe… James needs to be relegated to a minor character.  We’ll see… only time will tell…

  • Potato

    Man, I almost wish Cheers had been cancelled right away so people would STOP BRINGING IT UP. There HAVE GOT to be other examples of low rated shows that became hits. Maybe… one from last decade?


    @ Nick

    I’m innocent I say! I saw that lone one frownie face beside B, then read the text & saw ‘Til Death. That’s when I thought Bingo! Ring the door bell at Apt 23 & proclaim “Ding Dong the B— is dead!


  • Davis

    @ Nick
    Nice Schedule! Here’s my prediction:

    Once Upon A Time
    West Side (new drama)

    Castle (final)

    DWTS Results
    Shark Tank

    The Middle
    Modern Family
    How The F— Am I Normal? (new comedy)
    Dirty Laundry (new drama)

    Grey’s Anatomy
    Evolve (new drama)

    Last Man Standing
    Trophy Wife (new comedy)
    Malibu Country
    The Neighbors

    S.H.I.E.L.D (new drama)
    Body of Proof
    Happy Endings
    Super Fun Night (new comedy)
    Saga (new drama)
    Red Widow

  • Nick


    Your schedule is good too. There are just 2 things I’d change.

    1) ABC is not going to order a show with the F word in it with the intention of airing it after Modern Family. They only put The B in A23 there last year because they had origionally planned to pair it with Cougar Town on Tuesdays, but had too many midseason dramas and had to put The River there.
    2) Shark Tank is not going to 10 pm. I’d switch it with Body of Proof, which would likely have a full season because it’s within ~44 episodes of the limit for stripped syndication.

  • Rebecca

    Yeah, HE still makes me giggle….I’ll keep watching. Just got into The Neighbors – it’s funnier than I thought it would be. I figured I’m caught up on everything else at the moment; I could do a few Neighbors mini marathons on hulu, lol. And I still like OUAT but I agree it hasn’t been as great as the first season; certain moments here and there plus the fall finale was great and I look forward to more.

  • Dan

    In case anyone is wondering, Happy Endings has 23 episodes this season (including the unaired Kickball ep from last season). If my math is correct then 17 episodes will have aired by March 19 leaving 6 unaired. Happy Endings remaining 6 episodes post March will likely be aired on Fridays, maybe after LMS and MC finish their seasons. ABC could then choose to combine HE’s last 6 eps with an abbreviated 13 episode fourth season but that wont do the show well in terms of reaching syndication. My guess is the remaining episodes will air over the summer.

    I agree Happy Endings is kind of Cougar Town esque in terms of how its doing in its third season and with a lot of ABC comedies still doing well its chances are slim. However I believe ABC will try to work some deal out with TBS or shop the show to another network.

    Neighbors is dead because like Partners between HIMYM and 2 Broke Girls its the weak link between The Middle and Modern Family and after the shows remaining episodes air its done.

    Apartment 23 will have aired 17 out of its 19 episodes by March 19. I’m sure ABC can find some spot in its schedule to burn off the remaining 2 episodes, either way its dead.

  • Troy

    Last man standing is hilarious!! It should be moved to Wednesday after the middle so it can get the ratings it deserves. Friday is difficult because people go out at night. Should be renewed and not cancelled just relocated to Wednesday

  • Jon

    @ Kyle…..The New Girl is way down this year, and rightfully so. I don’t know what happened, but the writing has seemed to stall in some episodes this year. It is not the laugh out loud clever show it was at the end of season one. Still enjoyable but not nearly as so. For whatever reason people don’t know about Happy Endings. I’ve had many people tell me they’ve never heard of it, even though its in season 3. As for the Neighbors consider me a huge fan, by far my favorite new sitcom, and it isn’t even close. I understand not everybody gets it, but if your one that does it will make you laugh your butt off.

  • Jon

    @ Troy…..I think ABC would have done better by leaving it on Tuesday nights, because it’s Tuesday comedy block is dying, and a show like the b in apt 23 doesn’t help you much

  • Mary

    Even with my gut telling me that Castle is in its final season, feels good (as a die hard fan) seeing it as a likely renewal:)

  • eridapo

    Season To Date Averages for A18-49 and A25-54

    ABC A18-49 A25-54
    Don’t Trust the B in Apt 23 1.22 1.42
    Happy Endings 1.38 1.66
    Private Practice 1.39 1.83
    Last Resort 1.5 2.01
    666 Park Avenue 1.51 1.81
    Last Man Standing 1.58 2.15
    Malibu Country 1.62 2.22
    Castle 2.0 2.77
    Nashville 2.01 2.46
    Scandal 2.08 2.59
    The Neighbors 2.09 2.66
    The Middle 2.53 3.2
    Suburgatory 2.56 3.14
    Revenge 2.63 3.13
    Once Upon a Time 3.27 3.68
    Grey’s Anatomy 3.4 4.09
    Modern Family 4.79 5.7

  • eridapo

    @ Mary

    Even with my gut telling me that Castle is in its final season, feels good (as a die hard fan) seeing it as a likely renewal:)

    Castle will be renewed for the simple reason that it is making money for ABC in syndication… It is at that stage that the commercial revenue generated from each live showing on ABC is enough to cover all the costs of production (salaries and the like). With syndication, ABC, generates an additional 1.4 Million per episode or 32.3M in profit from syndication.

    Once a show reaches this stage the only thing that can kill it are exploding costs (like huge raises for the stars), the crew grows tired of the show, or a total collapse of the ratings of the show on ABC a la Private Practice.

    As of now the salaries for Nathan and Stana are way below the average of any leads in similar type shows. The show itself has very few actors in its roster when compare to other drama shows which means the salaries paid to actors are not a significant cost for the show.

  • omabin


    Moving Revenge around each year, for a heavy serialized show like it is, is a bad bad idea. It needs to stay on sundays from now on IMO. It is sort of easy to promote a show’s move after season 1 when it is still easy to catch up with previous episodes and so forth, but a season 3 move on top of that is just too much!

  • Dan S

    There’ll be no happy endings for HE. I have no problem forecasting its demise at the end of the season. Apt 23 I agree will not be renewed but (I can’t believe I’m saying this) The Neigbors will return but on a new night. Still too early to say but I’m hoping Nashville will come back & Scandal definitely will.

  • Mary


    I hope you are right:)

  • ABC needs more cowbell

    My family only watches 3 tv shows from ABC(Revenge, modern family and Last Resort). I have to dvd Last Resort because they put that show on too early(idiot who decided that should be fired). You’d think they’d want our family to watch since we’re considered a top 1% earner? It’s too bad they don’t take that into account when posting voo-doo ratings numbers. I bet the advertisements would count 100 times more than someone at lower middle to poor since my buying power is more supierer. Just saying. Part of the reason we get poor TV from the networks. Off to watch boardwalk empirer, Game of thrones, Dexter and a number of really great shows on cable tv.

  • Nick


    Yes, but I think that Grey’s Anatomy is (very slowly) dying. It’s not going to be able to hold up ABC Thursdays within a few years and ABC needs to prevent total collapse of the most important night of the week by moving a versatile and successful show to the night. Revenge is the best balance between ratings and compatibility with Grey’s.

  • Nick

    ^I want to add that ABC has done something similar before, with OUAT and Desperate Housewives. However, that was a big gamble, and ABC needs to take a slightly different approach.

© 2015 Tribune Digital Ventures