ABC: Why Is 'Revenge' Likely To Be Renewed When 'Nashville' Is Just A "Toss Up"?

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

Written By

December 3rd, 2013

Click this link for the latest ABC 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-November 27, 2013):

Program Status Renew/ Cancel Index
Lucky 7* canceled 0.44
The Neighbors (F) :oops: 0.49
Betrayal :oops: 0.49
Once Upon A Time In Wonderland :oops: 0.56
Last Man Standing (F) :) :) :) :) 0.66
Trophy Wife :oops: 0.71
Revenge :) :) :) :) 0.82
Nashville :| :| :| 0.82
Back in the Game de facto canceled, airing remaining episodes 0.91
The Goldbergs :| :| :| 0.94
Castle :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.03
Super Fun Night :oops: 1.10
Once Upon A Time :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.14
The Middle :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.15
Grey's Anatomy :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.40
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.45
Scandal :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.52
Modern Family :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: 1.96

The nine week Fall ratings averages for Revenge and Nashville are virtually identical, as well as the ratings for their last 2 weeks. Then why does the cancellation bear judge Revenge is likely to be renewed and Nashville is just a "toss up" for renewal or cancellation?

It's a matter of proximity to the 88 episodes that currently seems to be the minimum level for extra profitable stripped syndication. Syndication is possible with any number of episodes, but fewer than 88-100 means much less revenue per episode.

At the end of this season Revenge will require only one more full season to reach 88 episodes, making it likely that ABC will endure almost any ratings level to get that fourth season. Nashville will require two more seasons. That extra hurdle could separate the two shows' fates.

“Why is Super Fun Night certain to be canceled, yet sitting beside a bunch of certain to be renewed shows?”

Super Fun Night's position in the list is determined by its ratings average, which has yet to “catch up” to its recent ratings declines.

However, its prediction is based primarily on the fact that it didn’t receive a full season order. There are very isolated instances of Fall premiere rookie shows without full season orders being renewed for a second season, but it’s not even remotely the way to bet.

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.

  • Rose

    I believe in Nashville. You don’t cancel a show with Connie Britton, you just don’t. Plus it’s ABC’s drama with the most award nominations. (2 Emmys, 2 Golden Globes)

  • Zack

    You also have to remember that “Nashville” is shot entirely on location, and that is expensive. Some of that is offset by iTunes music sales, but if a show isn’t making the return on investment, that factors into its chopping block status.

  • Rose

    I know. I just prefer to live in denial. It’s really a toss up, I guess. Let’s hope ratings improve a little.

  • Rose

    (Also, they do get money from the state of Tennessee and at least a bit from Nashville city). Maybe together with the itunes sales that’s enough.

  • RJ

    The syndication argument for Revenge is crap. It’s a serial drama with an endpoint. Nobody will buy it and if so, ABC will get like 250k per episode from a small network. Syndication money wouldn’t bring down any cost on the show. ABC canned Body of Proof (which would do better in syndication given it’s procedural nature) so why not can Revenge? The ratings suck and taking another year of losses sounds like a horrible idea.

  • Kimberly

    I had to give up on Nashville earlier this year. All of these Connie Britton hard-ons have to stop. She’s not doing anything for the ratings and assassinating every other actor’s character to make Connie happier about hers is not helping the ratings at all.

  • GregP

    Could ABC move Revenge and Nashville to air in the winter and summer months like they do with the Bachelor? When Grey’s and Scandal are on break, they would be much better rated filler on Thursdays than Mistresses or Rookie Blue which both got renewals.

  • Dan S

    I gave up on Nashville, just got too soapy & not enough music. I feel much better about The Goldbergs getting a 2nd season which is holding its own in a very tough time period for ABC on Tues. Not counting SFN that’s finished TG is ABC’s top rated freshman comedy this season. I think it can become a solid performer like The Middle that started off slow also.

  • N

    Well that reminds me of Pushing Daisies: 17 Emmy nominations, winning a few too. ABC still axed the show. Sadly , awards isn’t nearly as important as ratings.

  • Rose

    @Kimberly – as if she had that much influence (even as co-executive), plus – the writing for her character has been crap 70% of the time.

  • Brandy

    @RJ, BoP didn’t have three full seasons.

  • Tulpe

    Connie Britton is a fan-favourite (according to facebook activity).

    I think Nashville got so much better this season – or better than the 2nd half of season 1. They’re getting rid of the soapy elements, thank god.

  • tv fan 1986

    Can’t ABC just put Nashville on Thursdays at 10/9c and move Grey’s Anatomy up at 8/7c and Scandal up at 9/8c?! That’s what I would do!

  • merrrranga

    “You don’t cancel a show with Connie Britton, you just don’t.”

    yeah, tell that to every single show she’s been a main on, excepting FNL.

  • Rose

    as in one (lost at home) which was more than a decade ago. FNL,AHS and Spin City did rather well, I’d say.

  • Kimberly

    @GregP, Nashville would probably get 1.2 in the summer, when less people watch TV. Rookie Blue is an imported Canadian show, which is produced with CTV and extremely cheap. It gets a 1.0 consistently, which is perfectly fine for a summer drama, especially since it’s so cheap. Nashville wouldn’t be worth it in the summer.

  • milo

    @RJ “ABC canned Body of Proof (which would do better in syndication given it’s procedural nature) so why not can Revenge?”

    Body of Proof was in its third season but the first season only had nine episodes and the third had thirteen, for a total of 42. So it had fewer episodes than most two season shows, and would have taken two more full seasons to get to syndication.

    And people always say that serialized shows don’t do well in syndication yet those shows do go to syndication and make that money. Are there examples of dramas that got to 88 episodes but no network wanted to syndicate, or they got a tiny number like the 250k you brought up?

  • Ted Craig

    Nashville and The Goldbergs both attract high-income viewers. They will be back.

  • tv fan 1986

    Also, I think that Revenge must be put back on Wednesdays at 10/9c where it was during the first season. Putting it on Sundays was a very ugly and stupid decision that ABC made. Epic fail ABC!

  • milo

    I think moving Revenge was a part of the drop in ratings. But with most shows I’d say that once a show has been moved (and the ratings drop), moving it back isn’t necessarily going to help at all and moving it again could even hurt the ratings even more.

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