Bubble Watch: 'Revolution,' 'Mom,' 'Dads,' 'Parenthood,' 'Hawaii Five-0' 'Mindy Project' & More Predicted Cancelled

Categories: Bubble Watch

Written By

September 29th, 2013

Revolution-5-550x364

Note from the editors: Robert has hung his Bubble Watch shoes this season. Long-time reader Tom Shaw is taking the reins. Fear not! Bill is still doing new Renew/Cancel Index posts on Tuesdays.

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** (2014-15).  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.

Bubble Watch: Numbers, Numbers Everywhere!

Broadcast TV may finally be reaching a modern equilibrium, as overall ratings are slightly up from last year and every network has a premiere to crow about (SHIELD, The Crazy Ones, Sleepy Hollow, & The Blacklist). It’s a much lower equilibrium than would have seemed possible even a decade ago – depending on the timeslot, a 2.0 will now get you renewed on every network – but it’s an equilibrium nonetheless.

Enough navel-gazing, as there are a mountain of rookies and transplants to cover. In rough chronological order:

ABC

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. started off as the #1 premiere of the season. No surprise… and frankly irrelevant. The much bigger question is how, say, episodes 4 and 7 do.

The Goldbergs started off as ABC’s #2 premiere. Its lead-in being network TV’s #1 premiere may have helped there.  Too early to tell how it settles (or more accurately, how SHIELD settles).

Trophy Wife received little of SHIELD’s halo; with multiple comedies waiting in the wings, it probably needs every other new comedy to fail to have a chance.

Lucky 7 is dead. Full stop. The question now becomes when, not if, ABC yanks it off the air. (Though it may very well produce all 13 episodes in its order. The Whole Truth did with roughly equivalent ratings a few years back.)

Back In The Game started off as ABC’s worst rated non-Friday comedy. That is not a recipe for survival.

The Neighbors dropped 17% in Week 2. Doing 45% of ABC’s worst Tue-Wed comedy, the ABC schedule would have to completely implode before they needed The Neighbors as spackle. I can’t imagine ABC renews it for two more seasons of sub-1 ratings on Fridays to get it to syndication.

CBS

Mom started off as CBS’ worst rated comedy. That isn’t good. Furthermore, can even the Chuck Lorre name save it… from being replaced by a Chuck Lorre show (Mike & Molly)?

Hostages is dead after these 15 episodes. The only question now is if the numbers get bad enough that it swaps timeslots with Hawaii Five-0.

Person Of Interest returned to numbers slightly worse than it was doing in Spring.  It was still CBS’ top rated 10pm show. Its performance probably has CBS executives chugging antacids nonstop – not because of PoI’s ratings themselves, but because Scandal-level ratings are now nearly impossible at 10pm on broadcast TV from now on.

The Crazy Ones is the #2 rated premiere of the season. I wouldn’t break out the champagne quite yet, as nostalgia-based ratings fall apart fast.

Two and a Half Men did roughly CBS’ ratings average. I thoroughly doubt CBS gets it at the average programming cost. Some year CBS will have enough successful comedies to let this go – and it could be this year.

Hawaii Five-0 actually held onto most of its Monday audience, dropping only 20% from its April & May average. That said, skipping Sundays is a significant sign that CBS considers it all but dead.  A decent performance when it replaces Hostages might convince CBS to give it another chance – but I certainly wouldn’t bet on it.

FOX

Sleepy Hollow dropped a mere 11% in Week 2, against full first run competition. Almost Human has the tiniest of leashes to survive into Spring.

Dads and Brooklyn Nine-Nine predictably suffered vs. first-run competition, dropping over 30% this week.  On the plus side, they aren’t worse (yet) than The Mindy Project’s numbers!

NBC

The Blacklist took advantage of its Voice lead-in to be the #3 premiere of the season.  As long as it keeps The Voice as its lead-in, it gets renewed.

Chicago Fire took advantage of its Voice lead-in to gain nearly a full ratings point over where it was in Spring.

Revolution, now without a Voice lead-in, did numbers nearly equal to how it ended Spring. This is frankly a significant victory for the show! (Or a sign that NBC wasted that Voice lead-in for all of last Spring. Either or.) If it can keep above 1.5 or so (and there’s no regime change at NBC), I could see a (cheapened, effectively two season) renewal. I just won’t predict that, yet.

Parks & Recreation took over Community’s timeslot. It apparently took over Community’s ratings too, tying Lucky 7 for the worst rated Monday – Thursday show on the Big Four. And yet (given the probable lack of any Fall comedy hits on NBC) I still think it is likely it gets a 13 episode spackle/farewell order for next year.

The Michael J. Fox show premiered to ratings slightly over NBC’s scripted average. As the result of a bidding war that lead to a 22-episode order, this has to be highly disappointing for NBC. Even worse, the show didn’t appreciably improve at 9:30, when there was no competing nostalgia option on CBS.

Parenthood, moving to a much rougher timeslot, tied its series low. Not a particularly healthy situation, when it is now at a syndicatable episode count and NBC has multiple Spring dramas that could be successful.

Note: only scripted shows that have aired at least one episode this season are in the table below.
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Show Network Status
How I Met Your Mother CBS Final Season
tvbythenumbers.com
Back In The Game ABC Cancellation Predicted
Lucky 7 ABC Cancellation Predicted
Nashville ABC Cancellation Predicted
The Neighbors ABC Cancellation Predicted
Trophy Wife ABC Cancellation Predicted
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Cancellation Predicted
Hostages CBS Cancellation Predicted
Mom CBS Cancellation Predicted
Dads Fox Cancellation Predicted
The Mindy Project Fox Cancellation Predicted
Parenthood NBC Cancellation Predicted
Revolution NBC Cancellation Predicted
tvbythenumbers.com
The Goldbergs ABC On The Bubble
The Crazy Ones CBS On The Bubble
Two and a Half Men CBS On The Bubble
The Michael J Fox Show NBC On The Bubble
tvbythenumbers.com
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ABC Renewal Predicted
Castle ABC Renewal Predicted
Grey's Anatomy ABC Renewal Predicted
Last Man Standing ABC Renewal Predicted
Modern Family ABC Renewal Predicted
The Middle ABC Renewal Predicted
2 Broke Girls CBS Renewal Predicted
Blue Bloods CBS Renewal Predicted
Criminal Minds CBS Renewal Predicted
CSI CBS Renewal Predicted
Elementary CBS Renewal Predicted
NCIS CBS Renewal Predicted
NCIS: LA CBS Renewal Predicted
Person Of Interest CBS Renewal Predicted
The Big Bang Theory CBS Renewal Predicted
Bones Fox Renewal Predicted
Brooklyn Nine-Nine Fox Renewal Predicted
Sleepy Hollow Fox Renewal Predicted
The New Girl Fox Renewal Predicted
Chicago Fire NBC Renewal Predicted
Law & Order: SVU NBC Renewal Predicted
Parks & Recreation NBC Renewal Predicted
The Blacklist NBC Renewal Predicted
tvbythenumbers.com
Glee Fox Renewed

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  • Camsmom222

    Leah!! :):) don’t mess with is h50 fans!! We are a fiery bunch!:)

  • Wiseguy70005

    INCORRECT CORRECT

    Dad’s Dads
    Moms Mom
    Hawaii Five-O Hawaii Five-0

  • Wiseguy70005

    It is in reruns on TNT. Syndication means reruns bought by local stations to show in their area at different times.

  • TV Viewer

    There is a poll on how fast Mike and Molly will replace We are Men on Monday nights.

    Maybe there should be another poll: How long before Hawaii Five-O goes from Cancellation Predicted to On the Bubble Or Renewal Predicted on the Bubble Watch index?

  • surya

    Hawaii five-0 cancelled?!! that’s impossible, it’s the best show ever! what data did you base your prediction on?!

  • Photoman

    Back in the Game is just a rip off of The Bad News Bears. The original not remake. Remake sucked. Original is great. MF isn’t as good as it used to be.

  • Tomcatt630

    MF characters just do the same schtick over and over. No growth.

    Doofus dad, meany mom, stereotyped gays*, dumb party chick, nerdy smart girl/boy, airhead boy, over the top Latina. Only Ed O’Neill plays a normal character.

    And it’s not so easy to adopt an Asian baby. The show makes it like they ‘bought’ Lily, and treat her as a ‘pet’. Message is “gays should adopt and never have sex again”

  • omabin

    @steve,

    that is true, but POI’s ratings would have to fall to a terrible level for it to be cancelled. It doesn’t matter that it is not owned by CBS as far as syndication is concerned. The process is the following:
    – Network owns the show (e.x. New Girl Fox this year): show in its third season => if it gets a third season, FOX will make a lot of money selling it in syndication => FOX tolerates lower ratings because they know they will get money from it anyway, so profit is still there
    – Network doesn’t own the show (ex. POI on CBS this year): show is in third season => if it gets a third season, Warner Brothers will make a lot of money selling it in syndication => WB offers the show to CBS at a low licensee fee => the show becomes cheap to CBS => CBS tolerates lower ratings because they are getting the show for cheap, so profit is still there

    The process is different, but the result is the same. Of course it could not be this simple if the decrease in the licensee fee is not enough to make the show profitable, but usually production companies and networks negotiate to make sure it happens. It’s a win win for both, so it is uncommon for it not to happen.

    As it stands, POI would have to average something close to 1.0 to be in any danger. Of course the higher, the safer it is, but right now, IMO, it is the safest bet for renewal at CBS after TBBT.

  • queeneeuq

    Well, it happened. ABC’s Tuesday-Wednesday block has finally imploded. It looks like The Neighbors might stay after all. :-)

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