ABC: Does 'Nashville's' Ratings Decline Spell Cancellation?

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

Written By

March 26th, 2013

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 December 31, 2012- March 24, 2013):

Program Status Renew/ Cancel Index
Don't Trust the B in Apt 23* canceled 0.50
Last Resort* canceled 0.57
Zero Hour* canceled 0.58
Happy Endings :oops: 0.61
Red Widow :oops: 0.62
Private Practice* canceled 0.63
Malibu Country (F) :| :| :| 0.65
Body Of Proof :cry: :cry: 0.66
666 Park Avenue* canceled 0.68
Last Man Standing (F) :) :) :) :) 0.74
The Neighbors :) :) :) :) 0.89
Revenge :) :) :) :) 0.96
Nashville :) :) :) :) 0.97
Suburgatory :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.05
Castle :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.06
The Middle :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.16
Once Upon A Time :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.25
Scandal :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.40
Grey's Anatomy :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.52
Modern Family :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 2.10

The cancellation bear has had Nashville predicted as "likely to be renewed" since mid-February, but the show's recent ratings declines have concerned some fans.

What do the numbers say?

Nashville new episode A18-49 ratings since Jan 1: 2.1, 2.2, 1.9, 1.7, 1.8, 1.6

No doubt about it, that's a decline.

But it's all relative.

ABC weekly scripted show new episode faux-average since Jan 1: 1.7, 2.1, 2.0, 2.2, 1.8, 2.1 2.1, 2.1, 1.9, 1.6, 1.6

Also, a decline.

Nashville has averaged 96% of ABC's scripted average since January 1, and 92% Since March 1.

Nearly the same relative rating, and still within the "likely to be renewed" range. Fans can breathe easily. Anti-fans can gnash their teeth.

Note: My "faux" average weights each show the same, regardless of running length, other errors are always possible.

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.

From now through the end of the broadcast season in May, the Renew/Cancel Index values will only be calculated using new episodes airing during 2013. However, until new episodes of a show air in 2013, the "old" Fall predictions will carry over.

Want to know what the ABC Renew/Cancel Index table looked like at the end of the Fall season? Click here.


  • :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.

  • Richard Steven Hack

    I think Revenge is fine for another season, but ABC should be looking to get it cleaned up a bit so it doesn’t drop any further due to overly complicated subplots and too many characters. Otherwise it may not get a season after next season unless they can retool it to go up in the ratings from where it is now.

    Unless Body of Proof goes up over the next couple episodes, it’s doomed.

  • Scott

    ABC (like NBC) has way too many reality shows taking up prime real estate. DWTS, Bachelor, Bachelorette, Wife Swap, Celbrity Wife Swap, Splash, Shark Tank, The Taste…good grief, have I forgotten any from the multitude? I would like to see ABC reduce their reality load, revitalize Fri. nights as TGIF, and (along with CBS) revisit Saturday nights with original programming. There are certainly enough pilots on order.

  • Tommy M.

    @ Scott, ABC will reduce the number of reality shows they air when viewers stop watching them. The thing is most of those reality shows perform quite well and are much cheaper to produce compared to scripted shows. So until that changes you should get use to them being around.

  • Ultima

    giving it a two hour season finale does not look promising to a lower rated show


  • Rollie Dethloff

    ABC 2013-2014

    Cancelled Dramas: Red Widow alongside current list
    Cancelled Comedies: Happy Endings alongside current list

  • Ultima

    8:00 – Monday Night Football-(Fall)(local affiliates already air it)

    The current Monday Night Football contract has it on ESPN through the 2021 season. While Disney could throw money at the NFL to have it moved back to ABC, they won’t for two major reasons. First, the other broadcast networks won’t be giving up any playoff games or Super Bowl rotation slots to ABC. Second, Disney makes more money with the games on ESPN than they did with them on ABC.

    Also, local broadcast rights for Monday Night Football are not exclusive to ABC.

  • aciel

    @Richard Steven Hack
    i agree i think that the writers have to do a lot of fixing next season i know that its too late now but at just get rid of a few useless subplots. and the only way to save this show next season is if somebody MAJOR finds out emilys identity in the season finale. revenge is fine for a 3rd season but if the writers continue with the convulted storylines then the ratings will drop further in the 3rd season and that season will be the last for revenge. so during the summer hiatus the writers have a lot of time to think things through and it would really help if they read all of the reviews make about this season which have not been soooooooooo good.

  • aciel

    do u just not like the show?

  • Al

    ABC NOT will move Grey’s, Scandal, Once or DWTS.

    My fall Schedule:

    8:00 – Once Upon A Time
    9:00 – Westside
    10:00 – Revenge

    8:00 – Dancing With The Stars
    10:00 – Murder in Manhattan

    8:00 – SHIELD
    9:00 – Dancing With The Stars
    10:00 – Castle

    8:00 – The Middle
    8:30 – Suburgatory
    9:00 – Modern Family
    9:30 – New Comedy
    10:00 – Nashville

    8:00 – Shark Tank
    9:00 – Greys Anatomy
    10:00 – Scandal

    8:00 – Last Man Standing
    8:30 – Malibu Country
    9:00 – New comedy or reality
    10:00 – 20/20

  • Cle

    Revenge will get a 3rd season, and its true that there is a need for fixing of on-going story by removing the uselss subplots.. Surely the 2hr finale is going to turn face of the story..

  • alvar

    Highly unlikely that ABC will make such significant changes to their schedule next season as some of you have suggested. Average rated programs or shows that have maintained the same timeslot for a long time – Grey’s, Castle, Nashville, Dancing With The Stars – are unlikely to be moved as there is no clear benefit in doing so. Its unlikely that ABC would change Sundays – Once and Revenge are doing okay and I don’t think anything else could do a better job. The only programs I could realistically see ABC moving are the popular Scandal and Shark Tank to fix weaker spots in the schedule, but its hard to speculate where.

  • Richard Steven Hack

    I just watched tonight’s Body of Proof. OMG! Are they really REACHING for the ratings now!

    The show starts out – after the usual murder – with Jeri Ryan in a hot outfit at a party flirting with a guy. She ends up in bra and panties shacking up with the guy she just met an hour or so ago – who seems to be the murderer. Awesome shots of Jeri! Works for me! :-)

    As a plausible story line, not so much…

    Then later, while trying to catch said guy, the camera zooms RIGHT IN on her chest with open blouse as the cops put a wire on her. I mean, really? It worked for me! :-)

    As a serious drama, no so much…

    And if that wasn’t enough, Dana has to go talk to some Russian madam who’s obviously gay and patting Dana on the shoulder as she tells her to come alone next, with no cops. Dana looks like she was considering it…

    That show’s writers and producers have gone nuts. Either the ratings will shoot back up to 2.0…or drop to 1.0 based on this nonsense.

  • Joanne

    I don’t understand how they can say that Nashville ratings are not doing well when they keep pre-empting (sp?) the show for something else or showing reruns when all other channels have new shows. This is not a fair evaluation.

  • Ray

    ABC should definitely renew Rv8. Also Nsh7, C5.1, M1, L943, and The4. The rest of them, they should be 86’d.

  • omabin

    I know people say this is too much of a fantasy schedule and that it will not happen, and I also agree, because ABC is too set in their own ways to go as big as they should. However, I think that failing to move DWTS and the Sunday shows would be such a big mistake that I can’t help but dislike any schedule that does not include those moves. This is my dream schedule for ABC:

    DWTS/ Splash/ DWTS
    DWTS/ The Taste/ DWTS
    Body of Proof

    DWTS Results/ The Bachelor/ DWTS Results
    Revenge/ The Bachelor/ Revenge

    Once Upon a Time
    Big Thunder

    The Middle
    Modern Family
    New Comedy
    Nashville [13 eps order to see if it grows]

    Also, no new comedies on the bock during the season unless the new comedy fails. Stop airing the lead out comedies out of repeats already just to spring premiere new comedies!

    Grey’s Anatomy
    Doubt or Betrayal or Reckless

    Last Man Standing
    Malibu Country
    Shark Tank

  • Cle

    ABC will sustain these shows on there slots on next season:

    The Middle @8pm Wed
    Modern Family @9pm Wed
    DWTS @8pm Mon
    Grey’s @9pm Thurs
    Once @8pm Sun

  • Cle

    what do u say??

    I wrote that bcox many of the comments have suggested Greys @8pm Thurs which I dnt think ABC will do..

  • Steve

    ABC Really needs to find a way to shore up Sundays because as of right now their 2 drama hits from last year are drowning out there.

    The problem right now is that their big success story of this year, Scandal, cant be used as a lead in because of how graphic it is. It is a 10pm/9pm ct show. Moving it up an hour would hurt it creatively, but I could absolutely see ABC telling them to clean it up a bit and then moving it to Sunday 9/8 ct and sliding Revenge after it.

    They need to milk that post Grey’s slot for all it’s worth, and Scandal has found its audience and doesn’t need that lead in anymore. If they arent willing to try to fix Sunday, they could at least move Nashville to Sunday and move Revenge back to the late slot on Wednesday. Moving Revenge to Sunday was a huge mistake. ABC will never admit to it though. They were OWNING that 10/9ct slot last year with Revenge.

  • Brad

    What the hell is RV8? How does Revenge even turn into RV8?

  • Brandy

    I just want Once Upon a Time and Nashville renewed.

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