Our Renew / Cancel Index predicts potential renewal or cancellation for scripted broadcast primetime shows for the 2010-11 season (results through April 25, 2010):

  • Likely To Be Canceled By May, 2010; Officially Canceled
  • Some Danger Of Being Canceled By May, 2010
  • Likely to Be Renewed For The 2010-11 Season
  • Renewed For The 2010-11 Season
Program Renew/ Cancel Index
The Beautiful Life: TBL (P) 0.49*
Melrose Place (P) 0.57
90210 (P) 0.76
Gossip Girl (P) 0.91
Life Unexpected (P) 0.99
Smallville (F), (P) 1.01
One Tree Hill (P) 1.04
Supernatural (S), (P) 1.10
Vampire Diaries (P) 1.43

Relative new episode scripted show ratings since 12/28/09.

Melrose Place (P) 0.50
90210 (P) 0.74
Life Unexpected (P) 0.91
Gossip Girl (P) 0.95
Smallville (F), (P) 0.95
One Tree Hill (P) 1.01
Supernatural (S), (P) 1.15
Vampire Diaries (P) 1.56

I’ve written about my ideas for new methods for the Renew / Cancel Index for next season. One idea is comparing only new episode scripted show ratings after the holidays. While I’m not sure where the new method would have me “draw the line” between renewal and cancellation until I can take the entire season into account, I’m pretty sure we can use them to take a closer look at this season’s bubble shows, so I’ll be including the “experimental” relative new episode ratings for the last few week’s worth of posts. While I may use women 18-34 ratings for CW shows next season, I am limited to adults 18-49 ratings for *this* season.

Just as I did with ABC, ranking CW shows by their relative new episode adults 18-49 ratings since the beginning of 2010 puts Life Unexpected right were it’s been all along, in uncertain territory, that I assess as “some danger of being canceled”. (particularly uncertain since I’m using adults 18-49 ratings, when the CW targets women 18-34).

Since a decision on Life Unexpected may not be known until the CW upfront presentation on  May 20, and no more new episodes are to be aired between now and then, fans will just have to make due with the uncertainty.

Note that Life Unexpected’s ratings Index includes only new episodes, while the rest of the CW show Indexes contain many repeat airings, so it’s difficult to make an apples to apples comparisons without looking at individual episode numbers. That’s why the show is colored orange in the list.

One Tree Hill is on far more solid ratings ground, and barring something unforseen, it has the ratings for renewal.

Melrose Place is certain to be canceled.

*I have frozen The Beautiful Life’s Index at its value the week of cancellation.

This is a breakdown of CW scripted shows and their renewal and cancellation prospects. Here are links to the other networks:


The Renew/Cancel Index is a show’s Season To Date adults 18-49 rating divided by its network’s Season to Date average 18-49 rating. If a show’s season to date 18-49 ratings average equalled its network’s 18-49 average, the show would have an Index of 1.00. Without special factors, scripted shows that were more than 10% below their network’s average are typically canceled by the end of the broadcast primetime season.

Factors that could cause a show to be renewed with well below average index:

  • (F) -Fridays: Shows airing on Fridays have been renewed with significantly lower than average Indexes.
  • (S) – Syndication: Shows nearing syndication (66-88 episodes), often have economic factors that trump ratings leading to renewal.
  • (T) – Third Party: Shows that have a portion of their cost underwritten by a 3rd party can be renewed with substantially lower ratings.
  • (P) – Produced by the network’s production company – For shows on the bubble, being produced by the network’s corporate production company can be a survival advantage. For real losers, it’s unlikely to help.

What’s the History of the Index and How Did It Do In the Past? Check out the results from the 2007-8 season and the 2008-9 season.

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved. All ratings used are Live+Same Day viewing.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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