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.

This Isn’t The Renew/Cancel Index

Though the methodology is the same, unlike the Renew/Cancel Index which predicts what would happen if the season ended now, Bubble Watch seeks to prognosticate on what will happen by May.  The two are still usually fairly closely aligned, particularly as we near the end of the season.

We’re in the home stretch with less than 5 weeks to go before the fall 2011 schedules are announced along with official renewals and de facto cancellations.

“Too soon?” is a relative concept, but here’s my take on some shows whose fates still aren’t crystal clear.


Verdict: definitely not too soon to declare it likely to be canceled.  While I of course hope Chuck is renewed, please spare me any “Chuck is a consistent performer for NBC” nonsense. Consistently edging lower and setting new series lows isn’t the type of consistent performance that gets shows renewed!  Still, likely isn’t certain and, it’s Chuck so it seemingly has a puncher’s chance no matter what happens.

Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior

Verdict: oops, too soon! Was it too soon to move CMSB into “likely cancellation” territory last week?  Yes, yes it was. It rebounded by more than 20% on Wednesday to a 2.6 adults 18-49 rating. Is it too soon to move it all the way back to “likely renewal?”  Perhaps not, but I’m going conservative.  It’s back on the bubble, but if it continues to pull the kind of numbers it did on Wednesday it is certainly likely to be renewed.

The Paul Reiser Show

Verdict: it’s probably not too soon to declare its inevitable cancellation certain. But I’ll cut Paul Reiser some slack and give the show another week. For now, it debuts as a likely cancellation.

Happy Endings

Verdict: It’s too soon to predict anything.  I’m always cautious about comedies on ABC.  Yep, Happy Endings debuted a lot worse than Mr. Sunshine (2.8 adults 18-49 rating vs. a 3.7), but that doesn’t mean anything. Plus, against American Idol, its Modern Family lead-in was down to a season low excluding the night before Thanksgiving.  I make nothing much of its 10pm numbers this past Wednesday or that ABC has scheduled back-to-back episodes at 10pm on this coming Wednesday. ABC wants to see what comedy at 10pm does.  So far, an original Happy Endings and a repeat Modern Family did over 50% better than the finale of Off The Map. How will two Happy Endings at 10p with a Cougar Town lead-in do? My guess is a little worse than 10pm this past Wednesday, but still better than the Off The Map finale. Stay tuned.

Breaking In

Verdict: too soon-ish. Breaking In fell 26% from its premiere to a 2.6 adults 18-49 rating. While I’m not a fan of people bemoaning 50% retention out of an 8.0 that still yields a 4.0, 36% retention out of a 7.3 is…not likely to get the show renewed.  I’m going to leave  it on the bubble for now anyway. This Wednesday and the following Wednesday (4/27, by then Cougar Town will have been back in the timeslot for a couple of episodes) should tell the tale.

Body of Proof:

Verdict:  it’s not too soon to up it to likely renewal. So I have.


On the heels of a series low 1.3 adults 18-49 on Friday (if it isn’t adjusted up in the finals), some people will surely ask, “Did Fox renew Fringe too soon?”  I have no doubt that @MaskedScheduler saw that rating coming from a mile away, so I have to conclude that Fox got a sweetheart deal from Warner Bros that inoculated them against those kind of ratings.  If that’s the case, it definitely was not too soon to renew it. If that’s not the case then perhaps more an issue of too “WTF are you CRAZY?!”


Show Network Status
My Generation ABC Canceled
The Whole Truth ABC Canceled
Medium CBS Canceled
Life Unexpected CW Canceled
Lone Star Fox Canceled
Running Wilde Fox Canceled
The Good Guys Fox Canceled
Chase NBC Canceled
Outlaw NBC Canceled
Perfect Couples NBC Effectively Canceled
The Cape NBC Effectively Canceled
Undercovers NBC Canceled
Detroit 1-8-7 ABC Certain Cancellation
No Ordinary Family ABC Certain Cancellation
Off The Map ABC Certain Cancellation
Chaos CBS Certain Cancellation
The Defenders CBS Certain Cancellation
Traffic Light Fox Certain Cancellation
The Event NBC Certain Cancellation
Better With You ABC Likely Cancellation
Brothers & Sisters ABC Likely Cancellation
V ABC Likely Cancellation
$#*! My Dad Says CBS Likely Cancellation
Mad Love CBS Likely Cancellation
Human Target Fox Likely Cancellation
The Chicago Code Fox Likely Cancellation
Chuck NBC Likely Cancellation
Outsourced NBC Likely Cancellation
The Paul Reiser Show NBC Likely Cancellation
Happy Endings ABC On The Bubble
Mr. Sunshine ABC On The Bubble
Blue Bloods CBS On The Bubble
Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior CBS On The Bubble
CSI: NY CBS On The Bubble
Hellcats CW On The Bubble
Breaking In Fox On The Bubble
Lie To Me Fox On The Bubble
Law & Order: Los Angeles NBC On The Bubble
Body of Proof ABC Likely Renewal
CSI: Miami CBS Likely Renewal
Rules of Engagement CBS Likely Renewal
The Good Wife CBS Likely Renewal
90210′ CW Likely Renewal
Gossip Girl CW Likely Renewal
Nikita CW Likely Renewal
One Tree Hill CW Likely Renewal
Harry’s Law NBC Likely Renewal
Parenthood NBC Likely Renewal
Desperate Housewives ABC Certain Renewal
Criminal Minds CBS Certain Renewal
CSI CBS Certain Renewal
Hawaii Five-0 CBS Certain Renewal
Mike & Molly CBS Certain Renewal
NCIS: Los Angeles CBS Certain Renewal
The Mentalist CBS Certain Renewal
Supernatural CW Certain Renewal
Vampire Diaries CW Certain Renewal
Bones Fox Certain Renewal
House Fox Certain Renewal
Law & Order: SVU NBC Certain Renewal
Castle ABC Renewed
Cougar Town ABC Renewed
Grey’s Anatomy ABC Renewed
Modern Family ABC Renewed
Private Practice ABC Renewed
The Middle ABC Renewed
How I Met Your Mother CBS Renewed
NCIS CBS Renewed
The Big Bang Theory CBS Renewed
American Dad Fox Renewed
Bob’s Burgers Fox Renewed
Family Guy Fox Renewed
Fringe Fox Renewed
Glee Fox Renewed
Raising Hope Fox Renewed
The Cleveland Show Fox Renewed
The Simpsons Fox Renewed
30 Rock NBC Renewed
Community NBC Renewed
Parks & Recreation NBC Renewed
The Office NBC Renewed
Two and a Half Men CBS Renewed, But…
Smallville CW Final Season

Someone suggested I try color coded shading. I tried it and didn’t like it. It won’t be back next week…

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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