CBS: 'The Good Wife' Or 'The Mentalist' Will Be Canceled, Maybe Both Of Them

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

Written By

October 15th, 2013

Click this link for the latest CBS renewal / cancellation information:


Our Renew / Cancel Index predicts potential renewal or cancellation for scripted broadcast primetime shows by the end of the 2013-14 season in May, 2014. (includes results from September 16-October 13, 2013):

Program Status Renew/ Cancel Index
The Good Wife :| :| :| 0.57
The Mentalist :| :| :| 0.59
Hostages :oops: 0.60
Blue Bloods (F) :) :) :) :) 0.60
Hawaii Five-0 (F) :) :) :) :) 0.61
We Are Men* canceled 0.74
CSI :) :) :) :) 0.80
Elementary :) :) :) :) 0.80
Person Of Interest :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 0.85
Mom :| :| :| 0.91
2 Broke Girls :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.00
Two And A Half Men :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.01
Criminal Minds :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.08
NCIS: Los Angeles :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.11
The Crazy Ones :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.23
The Millers :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.26
How I Met Your Mother final season 1.31
NCIS :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.32
The Big Bang Theory :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 2.19

Once CBS dramas get moved to Sunday or Friday nights, they're just biding time piling up episodes for the syndication deals that make CBS piles of cash (and motivate other studios to cut their license fees to keep their shows on the air, like The Mentalist). As such, the future of all those shows is likely determined by syndication economics that are hidden to us.

Still, dramas have to go to make room on the schedule for next Fall. While the Bubble Watch thinks that Hawaii Five-0 is in danger, the cancellation bear disagrees. The bear thinks the Sunday dramas, The Good Wife or The Mentalist, are on much shakier ground. One of those two will certainly be canceled, maybe both of them.

Unlike the typically easy to anticipate CBS season to season moves, next season raises many questions that make predicting how many dramas get canceled a bit trickier than usual.

  • Does CBS keep Undercover Boss in the Fall? (yes, no change to drama hours; no, add one drama hour)
  • Does CBS keep the same number of sitcom hours? (yes, no change to drama hours; no, reduce sitcoms by 1 hr = add one drama hour)
  • Does Intelligence succeed, and CBS pair it with another short run serial? (yes, no change to procedural drama hours; no, add one procedural drama hour).
  • How many new dramas do they premiere in the Fall? (three has been typical in recent years, but this season saw only one)

Better to Follow The Bear, Than Be Chased By Him. 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, 2014
  • :cry: :cry:- more likely to be cancelled than renewed by May, 2014
  • :| :| :| - toss up between renewal or cancellation by May, 2014
  • :) :) :) :) - more likely to be renewed than cancelled by May, 2014
  • :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: - certain to be renewed by May, 2014

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 have the Renew / Cancel Index Worked Out In Past Seasons? See all the Renew / Cancel Index predicted renewals and cancellations from recent past television seasons.

  • Bill Gorman

    “@Bill Gorman – Have you tried a renewal index that tosses out extreme highs/low? TBBT is so off the charts – almost .8 higher than #2, that it really does throw things off. No other network has that big of a disparity between #1 & #2. I’d be curious how things look once you toss out TBBT.”

    No. But since I restart in January all the premiere peaks get removed.

  • gerry

    tvbtn has only had tgw as low as on the bubble for as long as i have been using the site.

    if its between the two, mentalist gets cancelled. i think both are likely but tgw could go on forever if the net agrees with me. since it is the best show around, i hope it does. but i’m also realistic.

    cbs also owns it and is making money off of its syndication/netflix streams. probably not a ton of cash, but it is still more than it would make of mentalist that rates pretty much the same.

  • Gregg247

    I’ve apparently reached the age where it’s okay that most of my TV viewing involves CBS. How did I become my grandparents??? LOL

    CBS has been smooth and stable for years now, but this season, it seems like the wheels are falling off. They have 2 choices; cling to their former glory for as long as possible by keeping old shows around (like NBC did in the early 2000s) or be bold, cancel all the deadwood, and charge ahead with a lot of new shows.

    Cancellations should include The Mentalist (yes, Patrick Jane IS Red John), The Good Wife, Blue Bloods, and Hostages. Keep Hawaii Five-O as it seems there’s still some untapped potential there. I would also pare The Amazing Race and Survivor back to once a season each, sharing a single timeslot.

    They’ll need some really good pilots to be able to pull this off, but I think making a big move is preferable to slowing dying, bit by bit, like NBC did.

    I like the fact that they went for broke on comedies this season. Sure, We Are Men didn’t work (I thoroughly enjoyed the 2 episodes I watched), but if they finish the season retaining TBBT, Mike & Molly, Mom, Millers (terrible show!), Crazy Ones, and 2.5 Men, they have to consider this a success. Could they go 2-for-2 and do the same with dramas next year?

    It should be interesting.

  • Robert

    @Bill Gorman

    Does it seem that these past few years (aside from its “syndication rule” season), CBS has been a little more lenient when it comes to The Good Wife’s ratings? Or do you see it as being treated just the same as any of their dramas?

  • MissingMyShows

    Both need to go. Sadly, they won’t bring back good shows that they cancelled. Cold Case, The Unit, Numb3rs, CSI NY. I’m down to only 2 nights a week I watch network TV. NCIS night and Criminal Minds/CSI night. The other networks are just plain awful. Why can’t they come up with tasteful sitcoms anymore? The good old days of The Cosby Show and Home Improvement. Now pretty much all of them (save The Middle) have some immoral storyline. The originality in Hollywood is truly sad. Finally, my last rant. I am still situated in the ‘prized demographic’ the execs target (18-49), albeit the upper end (42). Sadly, the execs stupidly think the lower end of that age range are the money spenders. With more and more young people staying at home because they can’t find work (and because they can and/or are lazy), maybe these execs ought to start focusing on the 25 or 30 to 50 to 55 year old range, since people are working longer because they can’t afford to retire, and quite frankly, have more damn common sense.

  • Bill Gorman

    “Does it seem that these past few years (aside from its “syndication rule” season), CBS has been a little more lenient when it comes to The Good Wife’s ratings? Or do you see it as being treated just the same as any of their dramas?”

    Not that different. Good Wife ratings in year one and two weren’t that relatively low. The ratings slide began in year three, and by then the syndication gods had taken over its future.

  • Scandalicious

    I have a feeling both The Good Wife and The Mentalist will be canned this season. The Mentalist seems to be wrapping up and The Good Wife just isn’t getting strong enough ratings. If one does get renewed I would say it will be The Good Wife if only to wrap the story up. I think that both Blue Bloods and H5O are safe at the moment. Could this be the year CBS finally finds some success in a mid season drama? If so, that could change everything. The only comedy I am really attached to at this point is The Crazy Ones. I hope it stabilizes and can get another season. I think all of the new comedies will be getting a back order.

  • Robert

    Does CBS ever do “final season” renewals? I know the CSI spinoffs didn’t and they were on a long time. So I’m guessing TGW doesn’t have much chance of that happening. It’d be nice though…

  • CBSviewer

    @ Robert

    Does CBS ever do “final season” renewals

    Usually no but there’s exceptions. For example, HIMYM got a final season because writters had to introduce the Mother and end the Story.
    Les Moonves also said that CSI will get a “final season” renewal (in a few years) because the Show is synonymous with CBS. I bet NCIS will too.

  • HV

    I think that the Sunday dramas will get canceled, while the Friday dramas will get renewed.

  • KJ Styles

    @Bill, you should have made Hostages this week’s headline, because the Good Wife and Mentalist’s fates will be in question all season long, would have been better to have waited on this one as you’ll only be able to go back to it every so often.

    As for my prediction, I think only one of them will get cancelled but not both. If for no other reason that they’ll have to move TWO shows to Sunday if they cancel both, and I don’t think they want to do that given the fact that they haven’t been getting ratings on Sundays the last several years.

  • Wallaby2012

    The Mentalist ended years ago, for me.
    The Good Wife has potential for some great episodes with the governor’s office now involved. I am really tired of the progressive slant on all the episodes but enjoy the streamlined legal tactics that are displayed.

  • Diane

    I saw the guy who plays the Mentalist on “The Talk”, CBS talk show. He said he is not RED JOHN, but that we will find out who it is this season..
    So, I am guessing that the show is ending. At least we will find out the answer to Red John before it goes. I’ve enjoyed this show, but I think it has run its course

  • Robert

    I agree there is a slight progressive slant on TGW but I think they do a good job of remaining very morally ambiguous when it involves a case. It’s interesting how Alicia is less affected by the morality of her cases as the show progresses. She used to feel much more conflicted, but as she’s become more successful and tries more cases, she becomes more detached. (The execution case was an exception, but I think that is understandable).

  • John

    I’m not surprised about The Good Wife. They opened the season with the most overdone cliche plot lines in TV crime/law dramas: saving the unjustly convicted black man on death row in the nick of time. Yawn!

  • Mori

    I had hope that person of interest would be doing better. However, I thought this would be TGW last season. I like the show and I find it sad that more people don’t watch this gem. With the Winter Olympics at the first of the year, I think they will let TGW and TM ride into the sunset come May.

  • Robert


    Well, it’s the way they handle the cases. The loopholes, anticipating the opposing counsel’s counter-arguments. There are always interesting ways they use the law to win their cases. That’s why the show is so praised. There are only so many kind of court cases a law firm is going to come across.

  • EllieMae

    OH I knew it – The Grace and Wayne got married so I figured one or both of them will get hit by Red John – darn now I read they are leaving the show so that seals it. It may be gone as a show then too – I like the show and would keep watching but don’t think it will make it past this year. Not that crazy about how they are going about finding Red John but oh well – love Jane and his team!

  • Goper428

    Hawaii 50, should be on Sunday night, and move Good Wife to Friday at 9

  • Robert

    I agree. I think H50 would be stronger than TGW on Sunday and it would be a much better fit with Amazing Race and Mentalist. I doubt TGW would do worse on Friday and it would be a good fit with Blue Bloods.

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