Breaking down the fall TV 2016 slate: The hidden numbers


TV by the Numbers has broken down the 17 different kinds of network TV shows, examined their ratings and discussed possible reasons why certain types of series are ascendant or declining at the moment.

Here are some other observations about them:

Most episodes per series: The six news shows on the air last season produced a total of 145 episodes, an average of more than 24 per show. Among scripted series, family comedies were the most prolific, with 301 episodes of 15 shows (just over 20 per show).

Fewest episodes per series: Thanks to “Wicked City” being canceled quickly and “American Crime” and “Scream Queens” having shorter runs, anthology shows totaled only 26 episodes — just about nine per series.

Biggest investments in one kind of show: FOX is the sole provider of animation in primetime on the broadcast networks, airing all three such shows this season. Other networks heavily into one kind of show are The CW and comic-book shows (6 of the 10 on all networks, 60 percent); ABC and family comedies (10 of 17, 59 percent); and CBS and crime dramas (11 of 20, 55 percent).

Biggest season-to-season gain: In sheer numbers, it’s concept comedies, which went from five shows last season to 10 this year. In terms of percentage gain, the amount of legal dramas has quadrupled, from one to four — all of which are first-season shows. “The Good Wife,” which ended in May, was the only legal drama on the air last season.

Biggest fall: Competition shows are down from 16 to 10 this season. Four that aired last year (“The Biggest Loser,” “The Great Christmas Light Fight,” “My Diet Is Better Than Yours” and “Strong”) are still in limbo. The number of hangout comedies has fallen by half, from six to three.

Where you’re most likely to find a person of color in a lead role: Non-procedural dramas. Seven of the 11 shows in that category set to air this season — veterans “Empire” and “Scandal” and newcomers “Notorious,” “Still Star-Crossed,” “Pitch,” “Shots Fired” and “Star” — all feature nonwhite actors in lead roles.

Where you’re least likely to: Several places. The four medical dramas and four legal shows on the air this season all boast diverse ensemble casts, but no actor of color is listed first in the credits. The same is true of the three hangout comedies, and only one of 10 comic-book shows on the broadcast nets (NBC’s “Powerless,” starring Vanessa Hudgens) has a nonwhite actor in the lead role.

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