Bubble Watch: 'The Following' Downgraded, Remain Calm All Is Well? + Community' & 'Zero Hour'

Categories: Bubble Watch

Written By

February 17th, 2013

It could be argued that The Following should've never been upgraded to likely renewal. It's been downgraded back to 'on the bubble." If you Google the phrase "remain calm all is well" you literally get Kevin Bacon as the top result. It's from the classic National Lampoon's Animal House (pictured above, video below).

One way or the other "remain calm, all is well" is good advice for fans of The Following to follow. Either in a real sense --if it stabilizes at around the 2.4 adults 18-49 rating, it will still certainly be renewed -- or in the Kevin Bacon-y 'Animal House' sense if it keeps dropping and dips down into the low 1.x ratings range.

Though Community premiered well last week, it still started on the bubble due to sparse data. In its second-week it fell 37% to a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating, and even though there's more data, and it wasn't "good", Community is still on the bubble. No need to get into the fan excuse bingo of "Valentine's Day" and post-premiere expectations. Right now, woeful as things are for NBC, a 1.2 adults 18-49 rating legitimately bubble show territory at NBC.

I've started Zero Hour at certain cancellation. Yes, there is only one data point, and yes it was Valentine's Day. But...

There are a few other minor tweaks versus last week that you can scrutinize at your leisure.

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
Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 ABC Canceled
Last Resort ABC Canceled
Made in Jersey CBS Canceled
Partners CBS Canceled
Emily Owens, M.D. CW Canceled
Ben and Kate Fox Canceled
The Mob Doctor Fox Canceled
Animal Practice NBC Canceled
Do No Harm NBC Canceled
Zero Hour ABC Certain Cancellation
1600 Penn NBC Certain Cancellation
Guys with Kids NBC Certain Cancellation
Happy Endings ABC Likely Cancellation
CSI: NY CBS Likely Cancellation
Vegas CBS Likely Cancellation
90210 CW Likely Cancellation
Cleveland Show, The Fox Likely Cancellation
Touch Fox Likely Cancellation
Deception NBC Likely Cancellation
The New Normal NBC Likely Cancellation
Smash NBC Likely Cancellation
Up All Night NBC Likely Cancellation (Or already canceled?)
Last Man Standing ABC On The Bubble
Malibu Country ABC On The Bubble
Following, The Fox On The Bubble
Good Wife, The CBS On The Bubble
Mentalist, The CBS On The Bubble
Rules of Engagement CBS On The Bubble
Carrie Diaries, The CW On The Bubble
Hart of Dixie CW On The Bubble
Beauty and the Beast CW On The Bubble
Community NBC On The Bubble
Go On NBC On The Bubble
Whitney NBC On The Bubble
Castle ABC Likely Renewal
Neighbors, The ABC Likely Renewal
Revenge ABC Likely Renewal
Suburgatory ABC Likely Renewal
Elementary CBS Likely Renewal
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Likely Renewal
Nikita CW Likely Renewal
Mindy Project, The Fox Likely Renewal
Law & Order: SVU NBC Likely Renewal
Parks & Recreation NBC Likely Renewal
Grey's Anatomy ABC Certain Renewal
Middle, The ABC Certain Renewal
Modern Family ABC Certain Renewal
Nashville ABC Certain Renewal
Once Upon a Time ABC Certain Renewal
Scandal ABC Certain Renewal
2 Broke Girls CBS Certain Renewal
Blue Bloods CBS Certain Renewal
Criminal Minds CBS Certain Renewal
CSI CBS Certain Renewal
Mike & Molly CBS Certain Renewal
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS Certain Renewal
Person of Interest CBS Certain Renewal
Two and a Half Men CBS Certain Renewal
Glee Fox Certain Renewal
New Girl Fox Certain Renewal
Raising Hope Fox Certain Renewal
Chicago Fire NBC Certain Renewal
Grimm NBC Certain Renewal
Parenthood NBC Certain Renewal
Revolution NBC Certain Renewal
Big Bang Theory, The CBS Renewed
How I Met Your Mother CBS Renewed
NCIS CBS Renewed
Arrow CW Renewed
Supernatural CW Renewed
Vampire Diaries, The CW Renewed
American Dad Fox Renewed
Bob's Burgers Fox Renewed
Bones Fox Renewed
Family Guy Fox Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Renewed
Private Practice ABC Final SeasonFinished
Gossip Girl CW Final SeasonFinished
Fringe Fox Final SeasonFinished
30 Rock NBC Final Season Finished
The Office NBC Final Season


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  • Honey Badger

    Not only is NBC in big trouble, it looks like they have given up. They put repeats and low cost shows on Friday, Saturday and Sunday that have no chance of getting good ratings. Looks like they are going back to cutting costs, just like the old Jay Leno Primetime days.
    Friday: NBC Dateline (8-10PM) 1.3, NBC Rock Center With Brian Williams 1.1 Saturday: NBC American Ninja Warrior 0.6, NBC Chicago Fire -R 0.4, NBC Saturday Night Live -R 0.7 Sunday: NBC Dateline 1.0, NBC Betty White’s Off Their Rockers – R 0.9, NBC Saturday Night Live in the 90s (9-11PM)- R 1.4

    I read somewhere they are cutting costs because of the financial repercussions of shows that flopped and tanked, like the expensive “ Smash “ that tanked, “ Do No Harm “ which lasted two weeks after premiering with the lowest adults 18-49 rating for an in season scripted show on the four big English broadcast networks, “Deception” tanked, and so many NBC shows have low and dropping ratings

    The latest rating for NBC shows now that NBC NFL Sunday Night Football is done for the year and The Voice is between seasons, are cancel worthy low for almost all NBC shows.
    NBC shows 18-49 ratings : “American Ninja Warrior” 0.7, Do No Harm* canceled 0.7, Animal Practice* canceled, Smash 1.2, The New Normal 1.1, 1600 Penn 1.1, Community 1.1, Guys With Kids 1.2, Whitney 1.2, “Rock Center with Brian Williams” 1.2, Deception 1.1, Go On 1.3, Up All Night * retooling show 1.3, 30 Rock * final season complete 1.4, “Dateline NBC” 1.4, Betty White’s Off Their Rockers 1.6, Grimm * Friday, 11/16/2012 1.6, Parenthood 1.7, Parks & Recreation 1.5, Law & Order: SVU 1.5, The Office * final season 2.1, Chicago Fire 1.9, The Biggest Loser 2.1, Revolution *Monday, 11/12/2012 2.6, The Voice averaged 4.3 , NBC NFL Sunday Night Football averaged 8.2
    As many people predicted on tvbythenumbers.com by many long ago, without “The Voice “ acting as a lead in to help other shows get better ratings, NBC would be lucky to get a show above a 2.0 18-49 rating. Looks like the predictions are true !
    Example: “ Go On “.premieried with a 3.4 18-49 rating and went settled around a 2.4, without “the voice “ as a lead-in, Go On dropped to a 1.3.
    As predicted on tvbythenumbers.com by many long ago, the oversaturation of singing and talent shows will cause all these shows ratings and viewers to drop big time.
    Look at American Idol ratings
    FOX American Idol 3.6 18-49 Rating 12.33 Viewers Live+SD (million)
    This shows that NBC is in big trouble.
    “The Voice “ and NBC NFL Sunday night Football “ without these two shows NBC would be having a big down year. It is inevitable “ The Voice “ratings will drop soon, like all the other oversaturated singing and talent shows, then watch NBC drop big time, as it is very dependent on “ The Voice “ for its ratings and lead-in help for other shows ratings.

    “the complete collapse of NBC spring ratings …. NBC’s scripted show average the last three weeks has hovered around a 1.5. That means shows that average a 1.3 have a reasonably good chance of being renewed. Let that sink in for a second. Yikes.” Bill Gorman /tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com

    At this point I have no idea what shows NBC will cancel as it looks like almost all their shows should be up for cancellation. If these shows were on CBS almost all of them would be cancelled.

    What would you do if you were President of NBC now?

  • ***

    Likely renewal?
    Revenge needs to be canceled.
    The worst show on the planet.

    Um… revenge is sweet.

  • cadburyeasteregg

    I can tell NBC is already thinking about dropping Deception, the main website and the Evidence Control Unit ARG are no longer being updated. There weren’t commercials for the new episode shown until this morning.

  • Grimman

    Watched the first bit of Zero Hour.. stopped watching after about 25 minutes. Not my cup of tea.

  • John

    I think Grey’s Anatomy is living on it’s past glory. It’s now mainly a show of sex scenes with some medicine thrown in now and then. It’s also a show of disappearing white males, with only 3 left of the dozen or so main characters. Even with racial preferences running strong in medical school admissions, it’s hard to believe there’s not even one in the new class of interns.

  • Stu

    I’m guessing Zero Hour gets axed in the next few weeks and they don’t bother airing all 13 eps. I read at HR that ratings went down from the first 1/2 hr to the second 1/2 hr, so a significant number of people who gave it a try didn’t even like it enough to stick through the entire episode. Not a good sign.

  • NicoleTaylor

    I will be glad when Malibu Country gets off the bubble and on renewal.Do not care for Nasville but love Big Bang Theory.If ABC continues to be number one on Friday nights, does MC stand a better chance of renewal? I realize it is not number one every Friday, but is more than holding its own.

  • Honey Badger

    NBC needs drastic action to save the sinking network. I know people will say other broadcast networks have been worse off in the past than NBC is now and recovered. To those people I say This:
    For all those who think broadcast television Networks can make changes, turn things around, and go back to the good old days of Gunsmoke and The Cosby show, etc. please read:
    this rule” on tvbythenumbers.com
    tvbythenumbers GunsmokeRule: “No comparing the ratings of any individual show this season to a show in any season except the previous one. “How could CBS have canceled Gunsmoke, for some dreck like NCIS? Gunsmoke averaged a 40 rating and a 65 share in 1960!
    A very different television landscape indeed.
    Since 1997, overall broadcast television primetime ratings have declined by about 1/3. Pretty much every entertainment show on broadcast primetime in 1997 on any given network rated substantially higher than any show today on that network.
    Comparisons to long past broadcast shows *always* reflect poorly on current broadcast shows, prove nothing, and make no sense!”

    And check out the chart on tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com : Where Did The Primetime Broadcast TV Audience Go? http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/2010/04/12/where-did-the-primetime-broadcast-tv-audience-go/47976/

    Adding to NBC problems – The whole television environment has changed the last few years – All the broadcast networks have been tanking for years, and they are tanking big time again this year. broadcast networks have been dropping like a rock in ratings and viewers for many years. Cable, Hulu, Netflix, the internet, Univision, Telemundo, and others are all taking away their viewers. Broadcast television has much more competition than it did a decade ago. In fact things have changed dramatically the last five years. Most of the networks are a shell of their former selves in viewers and ratings. An example of competition “The Walking Dead was Sunday’s top cable original with a series high 6.1 adults 18-49 rating.”
    The whole television environment has changed the last few years.“ The Cosby Show put up unheard of numbers: in 1987 it had a 34.9 HH rating, the highest since Bonanza in 1965 (22 years), and an all-time high of 63 million viewers per episode” . Today there is no show in broadcast that comes anywhere close to that, the top show today “The Big Bang Theory on CBS swept its time period, finishing first in households (11.3/18), viewers (19.02m), adults 25-54 (7.9/21), adults 18-49 (6.2/18) and adults 18-34 (4.4/15). “ American Idol on Fox came nowhere near that, in its best days having around 20 million viewers and now having around 4.1 rating 13 – 14 million viewers.

    NBC is in worse shape than other broadcast networks like CBS because they have lower ratings to begin with. Example: if I have a million dollars and lose 10% I still have $900,000, and if you have $10 dollars and gain 20% you have $10.20. Who is in better shape? Me

    What would you do if you were President of NBC now?

  • Andrew

    Revenge was heartbreaking talk about a tear jerker. :(

    Oh well kiss Guys with Kids Deception and New Normal ( mainly thanks to the religious organizations boycotting the show same as GCB and The Book of Daniel years ago on NBC)goodbye this sucks.

    1600 Penn would also be great…if it werent for the incredibly annoying lead actor who adds absolutely NOTHING to this show whatsoever and only brings it down more and more.

  • Honey Badger

    I like “ The Good Wife “ on CBS. But the writers have to move on from the Alicia Florrick and Will Gardner attraction thing, that story has been played out, time to move on, come on writers you are better than this.

    Same for “ Hart Of Dixie “ on CW, the writers have to move on from the Zoe Hart and George Tucker attraction thing, that story has been played out, time to move on, come on writers you are better than this.

  • Honey Badger

    Also for “ Hart Of Dixie “ on CW, the enough of the Wade and Zoe Hart rough times in their relationship, that story has been played out, time to move on and make them happy in their relationship, come on writers you are better than this.

    Same for Lavon, time for him to be happy.

    “ Hart Of Dixie “ on CW, if all the writers are going to do is have rough times for everyone, people will stop watching. In fact many people already have stopped watching, and even big fans like me will stop watching, and it was my favorite television show. But one more rough times in relationships show, or one more Zoe Hart and George Tucker attraction thing, and I will stop watching. I guess the writers just ran out of ideas. So sad for what was such a great show.
    Come on writers you are better than this.

  • DJ

    Somebody has probably already posted this link but for those of the mentalist fan club this is dissapointing


    It looks like Simon Baker is going to be gone after this year, hence the end of the Mentalist. Obviously it’s not official yet but I have a hard time believing there isn’t some smoke to this fire, there’s a reason this got leaked out. This really doesn’t come across as something somebody decided to sit on their couch to make up although I sure as hell hope I’m wrong by some miracle. Pretty soon we’ll have to put the Mentalist in the cancellation column which probably helps TGW and maybe even NCIS: NY’s chances.

  • Holly


    Well, that could certainly make CBS’ decision easier. And could be what saves The Good Wife (unless Golden Boy hits).

  • Latrell

    Am I the only one who chuckled over the fact that the “House” in “National Lampoon’s Animal House” links to articles about the show “House”?

  • laura

    B&B was bad and boring……cancel! CW = flop.

  • I Watch TV

    Community should be on a cable station. It is a good show that could be great without major network restraints. I’ll watch most anything, but Zero Hour is really stupid, as is 1600 Penn. There has to be some credibility in a show.

  • Reven8ger

    You are kidding me?

    The Mindy Project, one of the worst show this season which can’t do more then a 1.8 is “likely renewel”… and The Following, with 3,2-3,3-2,9-2,4-2,8 is on the bubble? Really?

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    Nope, I’m not kidding you. If the season ended today (or even a week ago) they would both be renewed.

    The only reason The Following was on the bubble was it’s ratings trend was all down prior to Monday (2/18), the table above was posted the day before that happened.

    There’s a slightly different barometer for comedies and a lot more data for Mindy (which, BTW was over a 1.8 A18-49 rtg as recently as two weeks ago) than the Following since it has aired many more episodes.

  • Brandy

    I wonder if CW will cancel all of BatB,Cult,90210,Carrie Diaries.

  • Jon

    How is the Following on the bubble?

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