Bubble Watch: Why 'Last Man Standing' Is Still On The Bubble & 'Beauty and the Beast' Is Likely to Be Canceled + Format Change

Categories: Bubble Watch

Written By

March 17th, 2013


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.

Beauty and the Beast & The Carrie Diaries

I’ve downgraded Beauty and the Beast to likely cancellation. I’ve left The Carrie Diaries on the bubble, but it’s by the slimmest of margins and I was tempted to downgrade it too. I understand Bill’s and others' thinking that if you’re not sure the CW would cancel both of those shows (or even either of them) due to need for shows on next season’s schedule, that relative to each other which one stays and which one goes definitely seems like a tossup. But while lead-in and retention are rarely a predictive factor in renewals, I think they matter in this case and in ways that aren't favorable at all for Beauty and the Beast.

It's true that The Carrie Diaries gets the lead-in from CW affiliates syndicated programming, but that's not been nearly as good as the cover The Vampire Diaries provides Beauty and the Beast. And while with the better lead-in Beauty and the Beast has recently outperformed The Carrie Diaries with adults 18-49, with the women 18-34 both shows presumably target, The Carrie Diaries is ahead in recent episodes.

I’m pretty sure CW will cancel one of the two. I’m not as certain that they will cancel both, but I still don't love the chances for either show, I just like The Carrie Diaries a teeny tiny bit more. Even with the lament "but The Carrie Diaries doesn't have to face off against Grey's Anatomy and Beauty and the Beast does!" I still like Carrie's prospects just a bit better.

At this point it doesn't seem likely that I'll upgrade Beauty and the Beast before the season ends, but the chances I'll downgrade The Carrie Diaries to likely cancellation remain high.

Last Man Standing & Malibu Country

Along with many readers, Bill made a compelling case for upgrading Last Man Standing to likely renewal. I won’t be surprised by that outcome, but in a world where success possibly equals doing worse than reruns of Shark Tank, and no recent history on ABC to use as a guideline (or recent history* with any Friday 30 minute sitcoms being renewed on  any broadcast network) I still shrug my shoulders and think “I don’t know.” So I went the other way on this one, I left Last Man Standing on the bubble and downgraded the noticeably worse performer Malibu Country to likely cancellation.

*If you think “Family Matters, Boy Meets World and others thrived on Friday!” counts as  recent history I am defining “recent” much differently than you!

New Format

Shortly after posting last week’s Bubble Watch, I changed the table format to get rid of the distinction between likely and certain. For now, I’m sticking with the approach, though I have (hopefully) improved some of the terminology to be less confusing than what I used last week.  Gone are the “likely” and “certain” distinctions. All that remains are “renewed” and “canceled” predictions.  I still have grouped the shows that have already been canceled or renewed separately and have attempted to label things in such a way that it’s quite clear what’s already been decided and what are predictions. Update: I have changed the table to improve readability further based on a suggestion from commenter JulieDawn.

The new presentation format doesn't mean all the renewal predictions are as likely as each other, or all the cancellation predictions. Of course I don't think The Neighbors' chances* are as good as Modern Family's. Same for Red Widow (a certain cancellation) and Malibu Country (a likely cancellation). Both appear the same on the table with a "canceled" prediction, but I don't view their prospects the same. But I still think Modern Family & The Neighbors will be renewed and that Red Widow and Malibu Country will be canceled so despite levels of likelihood, I don't think the distinctions matter much as far as the table goes. We'll see.

*"The Neighbors barely did better on a Wednesday than Last Man Standing did on Friday, how can you not upgrade Last Man Standing!? At least you should downgrade The Neighbors!!!" If you're one of those people, let's just say that when ABC airs 5 programs on a Wednesday and four of them are repeats with The Neighbors being the only one that isn't, I don't make too much of the ratings.

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
Private Practice ABC Final Season Finished
Zero Hour ABC Canceled
Made in Jersey CBS Canceled
Partners CBS Canceled
90210 CW Canceled/Final Season
Emily Owens, M.D. CW Canceled
Gossip Girl CW Final Season Finished
Ben and Kate Fox Canceled
Fringe Fox Final Season Finished
The Mob Doctor Fox Canceled
30 Rock NBC Final Season Finished
Animal Practice NBC Canceled
Do No Harm NBC Canceled
Office, The NBC Final Season
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
Following, The Fox Renewed
Mindy Project, The Fox Renewed
New Girl Fox Renewed
Raising Hope Fox Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Renewed
Malibu Country ABC Cancellation Predicted
Red Widow ABC Cancellation Predicted
Body of Proof ABC Cancellation Predicted
Happy Endings ABC Cancellation Predicted
CSI: NY CBS Cancellation Predicted
Golden Boy CBS Cancellation Predicted
Vegas CBS Cancellation Predicted
Beauty and the Beast CW Cancellation Predicted
Cult CW Cancellation Predicted
Touch Fox Cancellation Predicted
Cleveland Show, The Fox Cancellation Predicted
1600 Penn NBC Cancellation Predicted
Guys with Kids NBC Cancellation Predicted
Up All Night NBC Cancellation Predicted
Deception NBC Cancellation Predicted
The New Normal NBC Cancellation Predicted
Smash NBC Whoops, should've been moved to canceled
Last Man Standing ABC 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
Community NBC On The Bubble
Go On NBC On The Bubble
Whitney NBC On The Bubble
Castle ABC Renewal Predicted
Neighbors, The ABC Renewal Predicted
Revenge ABC Renewal Predicted
Suburgatory ABC Renewal Predicted
Grey's Anatomy ABC Renewal Predicted
Middle, The ABC Renewal Predicted
Modern Family ABC Renewal Predicted
Nashville ABC Renewal Predicted
Once Upon a Time ABC Renewal Predicted
Scandal ABC Renewal Predicted
Elementary CBS Renewal Predicted
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Renewal Predicted
2 Broke Girls CBS Renewal Predicted
Blue Bloods CBS Renewal Predicted
Criminal Minds CBS Renewal Predicted
CSI CBS Renewal Predicted
Mike & Molly CBS Renewal Predicted
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS Renewal Predicted
Person of Interest CBS Renewal Predicted
Two and a Half Men CBS Renewal Predicted
Hart of Dixie CW Renewal Predicted
Nikita CW Renewal Predicted
Glee Fox Renewal Predicted
Law & Order: SVU NBC Renewal Predicted
Parks & Recreation NBC Renewal Predicted
Chicago Fire NBC Renewal Predicted
Grimm NBC Renewal Predicted
Parenthood NBC Renewal Predicted
Revolution NBC Renewal Predicted


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  • disney rocks

    Hey Guys! ABC 2013/14 schedule-


    8- DWTS/ The Bachelor
    10- Nashville


    8- OUAT
    9- DWTS/ Mid-season- NEW DRAMA
    10- Castle


    8- The Middle
    8:30- NEW sitcom
    9- Scandal
    10- NEW drama


    8- Suburgatory
    8:30- How to live with your parents
    9- Modern Family
    9:30- NEW sitcom
    10- Revenge


    8- BOP (sep-dec, march-may; 22 episodes)/ Celebrity Wife Swap (January-March)
    9- GA
    10- NEW drama


    8- Shark Tank
    9- LMS
    9:30- MC/The Neghbors (Maybe?)
    10- 20/20

    New dramas-

    -3, order 4 though; The Mistresses?

    New sitcoms-

    2, but order 3 as one could air in HTLWYP timeslot, Fridays, in case one bombs

    – OUAT to Mondays
    – The Middle to tuesdays
    – DWTS to Sundays

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    @Danak: Having banished it to Saturday, formal announcement or not, it’s canceled as far as next year goes and that’s what the designations apply to. I understand the distinction, but it’s what we’ve always done in this circumstance, regardless of number of episodes remaining to air.

  • Kavyn

    I really don’t see them moving OUAT off of Sundays unless if they want to create some sort of fantasy night with a new show. It’s definitely not moving to Fridays (seriously why would they do that?), nor Thursdays. Mondays/Tuesdays are usually saved for Reality shows… I don’t know, unless if they completely redo their entire schedule I just don’t see it happening.

    Revenge is probably going to be moved off of Sundays though.

  • Jake

    Why is CBS waiting to renew a lot of their shows? Everyone knows most of them are gonna get renewed? I predict these will be renewed:
    Criminal Minds
    Person Of Interest
    Blue Bloods
    Hawaii 5-0
    The Good Wife
    2 Broke Girls
    Mike & Molly
    Rules of Engagement
    Two & 1/2 Men.

  • Kieran

    I think last man standing, Carrie diaries and csi ny.
    The mentalist will be renewed and so will beauty and the beast

  • CBSviewer

    My Predictions

    How I Met Your Mother = Already Renewed (24 episodes, Final Season)
    Rules of Engagement = Renewed (13 episodes)
    2 Broke Girls = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Mike & Molly = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Hawaii Five-0 = Renewed (22 episodes)
    NCIS = Already Renewed (24 episodes)
    NCIS: Los Angeles = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Vegas = canceled
    Golden Boy = canceled
    Criminal Minds = Renewed (22 episodes)
    CSI = Renewed (22 episodes)
    The Big Bang Theory = Already Renewed (25 episodes)
    Two and a Half Men = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Person of Interest = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Elementary = Renewed (22 episodes)
    CSI: NY = Renewed (13 episodes)
    Blue Bloods = Renewed (22 episodes)
    The Good Wife = Renewed (18 episodes)
    The Mentalist = canceled
    Partners = Already canceled
    Made in Jersey = Already canceled

    Castle = Renewed (24 episodes)
    The Middle = Renewed (24 episodes)
    The Neighbors = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Modern Family = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Suburgatory = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Nashville = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Body of Proof = canceled
    Happy Endings = canceled
    Don’t Trust the B- Apartment 23 = canceled
    Grey’s Anatomy = Renewed (24 episodes, Final Season)
    Scandal = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Last Resort = canceled
    Zero Hour = canceled
    Last Man Standing = Renewed (20 episodes)
    Malibu Country = canceled
    Once Upon a Time = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Revenge = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Red Widow = canceled

    Revolution = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Parenthood = Renewed (15 episodes)
    Community = Renewed (13 episodes)
    Whitney = Renewed (13 episodes)
    Go On = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Parks & Recreation = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Law & Order: SVU = Renewed (24 episodes)
    Chicago Fire = Renewed (24 episodes)
    1600 Penn = canceled
    Guy with Kids = canceled
    The New Normal = canceled
    Up All Night = canceled
    Deception = canceled
    Smash = canceled
    Grimm = Renewed (22 episodes)

    Bones = Already Renewed (24 episodes)
    The Following = Already Renewed (15 episodes)
    Raising Hope = Amready Renewed (24 episodes)
    Ben and Kate = canceled
    New Girl = Already Renewed (24 episodes)
    The Mindy Project = Already Renewed (22 episodes)
    Glee = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Touch = canceled
    The Cleveland Show = canceled
    The Simpsons = Already Renewed (22 episodes)
    Bob’s Burgers = Already Renewed (22 episodes)
    Family Guy = Already Renewed (24 episodes)
    American Dad ! = Already Renewed (20 episodes)

    90210 = canceled
    The Carrie Diaries = Renewed (13 episodes)
    Hart of Dixie = Renewed (22 episodes)
    Cult = canceled
    Beauty and the Beast = canceled
    Arrow = Already Renewed (23 episodes)
    Supernatural = Already Renewed (23 episodes)
    The Vampire Diaries = Already Renewed (22 episodes)

  • Adrian

    Honestly I can’t see CD getting renewed over BATB. They will both be canceled.

    No show (other than Nikita) has been renewed with 0.4/0.5s why would they start now? Arrow has proved new shows can work, they just need to appeal to a broader audience and not only to young women (which, judging by the pilots, seems the CW has realized by now).

    New shows will probably fail too but at least there is a chance, regardless of how small it might be, that they will do better than CD and BATB, which will both be doing 0.3/0.2 if renewed.

  • Igwell Predicts…

    … Malibu County will be the only surprise renewal. The only bubble shows to get the axe will be The Carrie Diaries and Rules of Engagement.

  • Guest

    TCD and Nikita should be canceled! Why is Nikita still around?!?!…

  • Guest

    TCD and Nikta need to be cancel! Why is Nikita still around with those awful ratings?

  • Danielle

    First, TVD has proven to not be a good leadin (which I do not believe in anyway, but some people still buy into that), second, BATB is still doing better than TCD. Every show dropped in ratings Thursday, except BATB, which maintained its previous viewers. Could they be better? Absolutely. But, considering they stayed the same and everything else was down tells me it has a strong viewer foundation.

    Also, I don’t recall seeing TCD trending WORLDWIDE like BATB is. BATB also had this weeks ep hit the top 15 on iTunes downloads. This show is selling internationally, something TCD isn’t. Saying these things don’t matter is just ignorant. The CW wants to make money, it doesn’t matter where it comes from as long as it comes in. Look at Nikita. We all know the main reason it’s still around is because of international interest. I think BATB is this years Nikita. Maybe this things never used to matter but times change. We live in a World Wide Web.

  • DeanW

    @ Guest

    Because The CW nneds 88 episodes to get a syndication deal.

  • Kavyn

    I was thinking, if The Originals works out well with TVD next season (which it should) and warrants a second season renewal, it might be a good idea to swap The Originals and TVD so that the Originals air at 8pm while TVD airs at 9pm. That way when TVD ends its run, The Originals is already defined in its old time slot.

    I think the Originals and TVD are really going to struggle in terms of writing in the upcoming seasons. The story lines have already gotten a bit stale on TVD, and now they’ll have to focus on writing two hours worth of Vampire drama. Unless if the Originals focuses on something else I doubt it’ll be able to keep up with itself for too long. I also highly doubt The Originals will last long enough to get syndicated, which could be a problem for the CW (although the CW has bigger things to worry about).

    I also say this with the thought that next season is likely Grey’s final season, and Glee will probably be moved back to Tuesdays, meaning the Thursday at 9pm slot would work just fine for TVD in the 2014-2015 schedule.

  • Mi

    @kavyn “Revenge is probably going to be moved off of Sundays though.”
    I think Revenge will stay on Sunday but will be moved to 10PM.

  • Yablans


    LMS consistently gets more viewers than ST although it does get a few tenths fewer in the demo. But LMS has always led the night with a developing MC behind it and is programmed against only one hour programs (broadcast and cable) so a decision to watch LMS is burdened with the fact that if you do not want to watch MC, you need to to tune in to the second half of another show. LMS has never had the benefit of being programmed near another popular show, even last year. Can’t say the same about Suburgatory, Middle, HE or Neighbors. As for this week’s lower rating than a repeat of ST, we still do not yet know the full impact of the college basketball overruns.

    LMS looks like a hit for the network if managed well going forward.

  • DW

    i have this feeling that both LMS and MC will come back but for 13 episodes and if in its first 6 doesn’t meet its criteria then it gets cancelled. it’s always dumb for a show to linger on a sub plot like the john reed thing on TM and they don’t resolve it. It only makes the fans angry.

  • Kavyn

    @Mi Possibly, I just don’t see it airing directly after OUAT again. I don’t really understand why ABC did it in the first place aside from those two shows being their most successful new shows of 2011-2012.

  • Bizarro

    I totally agree with you, Beauty is the one that has a slim chance at renewal. The CW will be taking other considerations this season unless Beauty goes down or TCD goes up both will be cancelled. A tenth does make a difference when that tenth is giving the CW more money from other factors. Also, HOD wasn’t a great lead in for M.D. which got cancelled GETTING the same ratings as TCD does now!

  • Nico

    I really don’t like the new format.
    Even if I agree with your explanation that there wasn’t really much of a distinction between “likely” and “certain” it was more interesting to read. At least, it was easier to understand the evolution of a show if it went from “certain” to “likely renewal” to “on the bubble” than “renewal predicted” to “on the bubble”. And even if, yes, “modern family” is more lilely to be renewed than “the neighbors” and everyone knows that, it is not really that obvious for other shows.

    At least if you want to keep it that way for now, I find it more logical, as someone already said it in the comments, to put the “renewed” section at the bottom. Much more of a progression if you put it that way.

  • http://tvbythenumbers.com Robert Seidman

    I’m sure there are lots of folks who don’t like the new format, and some who like it more and many –I’d guess an overwhelming majority– who don’t really care either way. The early results traffic-wise (small sample size of only a couple of weeks) support my guess, but more time could prove that wrong. We’ll see.

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