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 (2011-12).  Certain shows are toss-ups where based on the ratings, the renewal decisions could go either way and not be surprising.

Last week I took some heat for putting “V” on the bubble after only the premiere which pulled a 2.1 adults 18-49 rating. Perhaps after it dropped to a 1.9 in the second week, I’ll take less heat, perhaps not. Bill & I both took heat for being retention naysayers when it comes to renewal decisions because we weren’t buying the chatter about Cougar Town’s retention.

Though we’re sure our anti-retention ways were vindicated when ABC announced Cougar Town’s renewal (along with five other shows that were likely or certain to be renewed), we’re sure we’ll continue to take heat about that, too.

I’ve still got Fringe designated as likely to be canceled, but FOX entertainment chief Kevin Reilly has publicly lowered his Friday expectations by saying he’d be satisfied if Fringe retained only 80% of its Thursday numbers.  Will that get Fringe back on the bubble or better? Stay tuned.

Here’s a recap of the shows likely or certain to be canceled or already canceled (no changes from last week):

Show Network Status
The Whole Truth ABC Already Canceled
My Generation ABC Already Canceled
Detroit 1-8-7 ABC Certain to be Canceled
No Ordinary Family ABC Likely to be Canceled
V ABC Likely to be Canceled
Medium CBS Already Canceled
The Defenders CBS Likely to be Canceled
Life Unexpected CW Certain to be Canceled
The Event NBC Likely to be Canceled
Outlaw NBC Already Canceled
Undercovers NBC Already Canceled
Chase NBC Certain to be Canceled
Fringe FOX Likely to be Canceled
The Good Guys FOX Already Canceled
Human Target FOX Likely to be Canceled
Lie to Me FOX Likely to be Canceled
Lone Star FOX Already Canceled
Running Wilde FOX Already Canceled

With a 2.6 adults 18-49 rating  in its premiere, The Cape is not on the bubble.  With only one data point, it’s likely to be renewed.  There will be another data point after its Monday night airing and that one will be more telling.

Brothers & Sisters ratings have been dropping and ABC execs were pretty non-committal about its prospects. It’s now a toss-up for renewal for next season.

Some have asked how come $#*! My Dad Says is on the bubble, even though it has average ratings. There’s not a ton of nuance to the renew/cancel methodology, but there is some. CBS has a history of canceling its lowest-rated sitcom even if it has average ratings. That’s why $#*! is on the bubble.

I still get the occasional e-mail about what a dope I am for having The Good Wife on the bubble.  It’s numbers are bubblishus!  CBS also has a history of clearing over 3 hours from its schedule every season to make way for new blood. The Defenders will make up one of those hours, but the rest has to come from somewhere.

I still think CBS will renew The Good Wife for one more year at its current ratings, but its ratings say it’s at least in the mix of shows CBS will consider casting aside.

Update: commenter “themoonchild” notes I didn’t mention “Off the Map.” To be honest, I just forgot, however, because of the wacky premiere on a night where coverage of President Obama impacted the start times of shows before ‘Off The Map” and the special encore, I really want to wait for another week of data. Its numbers for the premiere (2.3 adults 18-49 rating) would have landed it on the bubble.

Bubble Shows:

Show Net
Better With You ABC
Brothers & Sisters ABC
Blue Bloods CBS
CSI: Miami CBS
$#*! My Dad Says CBS
The Good Wife CBS
Community NBC
Chuck NBC
Law & Order: LA NBC
Parenthood NBC

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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