Tuesday, April 29, 2014

RENEW/CANCEL NEWS: Almost Human (FOX)

Almost Human has been canceled.  If you read my pointless predictions short list post, you will know that I said the only reason this show would be canceled was politics, as its ratings were plenty good enough to get renewed on FOX.  When looking at a comments section, I read (citation needed) that Karl Urban basically didn't really want to do TV, and we all know Michael Ealy would probably prefer to do movies.  This is a big reason why you don't get working movie actors to do TV shows.  Maybe FOX has learned their lesson.  Interestingly, I think we can coin "The Michael Ealy Curse".  He's now been on two TV shows that had ratings that were good enough to get them renewed, but they weren't.  Is it his fault?  I'll leave that to you to decide. 

As for how I feel about it being canceled, there isn't much to say.  I always thought it was an okay show that never really grabbed me.  Toward the end, a nice chemistry had built between the two leads, but the rest of the show was ultimately forgettable.  It still should have been renewed, but I can guarantee you that you won't miss it as much as I still miss Alcatraz (a show that would get renewed today).  Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Chris Colley's TV Blog*'s Short List Of Pointless Scripted TV Renewal/Cancellation Predictions For The Fall 2013 TV Season (Big 4 Networks Only)

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Sorry folks, I've been really terrible about keeping up with my blog.  As work (a good thing) surpasses my free time, this will fall by the wayside.  I don't know how much I'll do with the blog anymore, though I will try to keep up with it the best I can when I have time. 

If you've been a regular follower of my blog, you'll know that a big portion of the "added value" of it is that I like to make predictions of what will and won't be canceled or renewed on the big 4 networks.  I haven't ever been perfect, but I've had a pretty good track record in the few years I've been doing in depth analysis of trying to figure out what will and won't go (sometimes even beating competitors like TV by the Numbers, though I am obviously not much competition).  Unfortunately, since I've been so bad at keeping up with my blog, renewals and cancellations have flown by me without even the slightest bit of notice or attention.  I've only seen what I would consider to be maybe one surprise (a renewal of The Mindy Project), so as far as I'm concerned, I'm batting 1.000. ;)

This is gonna be a TOUGH year for predictions of what hasn't been announced yet.  TV by the Numbers is famous for saying "DVR doesn't matter".  Last year, I said that DVR does matter, just not as much as you might think, but that the tide was changing.  This year, OH HELL YEAH, DVR MATTERS!  If you don't think so, how can you explain renewals of shows like The Following and The Mindy ProjectThe Following has numbers in the 18-49 demo for Live+Same Day (L+SD) that are just absolutely pathetic (woe is me Alcatraz, a great DVR performer that was here too soon).  But, if you look at the DVR numbers, you will see that it has a huge, uh, following on DVR.  FOX has put out numerous press releases this season talking about DVR numbers, and awesome this awesome that.  But until a renewal came up that would have failed in L+SD, there was no data to back up that those numbers were important.  At FOX, they are HUGELY important.  When factoring in their potential renewals or cancellations, pay close attention to what they're doing in the DVR ratings.

I'm not going to give out my proprietary DVR ratings analysis, but I am very confident that I can peg exactly when most viewers are watching their TV shows (hint, it's much closer to the airdate than previously assumed).  Armed with the nice precedents we've seen, with some of the early renewals, I think it makes some of the rest of the renewals easier to predict.  I also think we're in a pretty impossible situation in regards to some shows, and there's a good chance that a lot of prognosticators are going to be embarrassed.  If you know me, I'm the guy who predicts cancellation of all your favorite shows.  However, in the new era of TV, getting renewals of those same types of shows right is the new black.  I'm aware that many of the predictions I will list below could be wrong, but I feel there is enough data to back up my decisions, even if there isn't enough of a precedent.  If I'm right on most of these, a new era is upon us, and we can begin to adjust the thinking of tunnel visioned sites like TV by the Numbers.  If I'm wrong, well, we're still a couple of years out from being able to determine this stuff more easily.  Last year, I got several right that they got wrong, and this year I am going pretty far against the grain of what they think will happen.  I'll list shows that haven't had decisions made yet (as far as I know), what I think should (or will) happen, and any caveats or comments about my decisions that could make my prediction fall closer to 50/50.  I have enough data to make a decision based on pure numbers, but I can't begin to analyze the politics that might go into a dumb decision like The Mentalist not getting renewed on CBS.  This won't be my typical list of shows, with a straight "renew it" or "cancel it", I'm actually going to give a little insight to how I come up with these decisions, even if it's tiny in a show's case.  Let's get to it.

ABC


What's left:
Mixology
The Neighbors
Super Fun Night
Trophy Wife
Black Box (Added May 7, 2014)
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Castle
The Goldbergs
Grey's Anatomy
Last Man Standing
The Middle
Modern Family
Nashville
Once Upon a Time
Resurrection
Revenge
Scandal
Suburgatory (somehow I missed this, so I won't take credit for any guess, which helps my prediction average...lol)

I'm in complete agreement with TV by the Numbers on what will happen on ABC (a network that usually is the one that messes up my perfect prediction record).  For the shows that are highlighted in red, I think they're done.  No explanation is necessary here, because all of these shows fates were easy to predict for one reason or another, in my opinion.  For the shows that are in blue, I'm pretty much 100 percent positive that they'll get renewed.  I've been predicting renewal of The Goldbergs for a very long time, when the numbers didn't look so great for its return.  So, while TV by the Numbers might have eventually realized that train was too big to stop, I don't think they settled on to that prediction for quite awhile.  That's the one show where DVR is mattering.  Its L+SD ratings are right on the bubble for ABC sitcoms, but it is an outstanding DVR performer (something almost no ABC comedies have going for them).  The Goldbergs (you too, Nashville), you can thank DVR ratings for your renewal.  For a few of the others that are sitting in very similar bubble positions (Mixology, Super Fun Night), you can blame lack of DVR numbers for your cancellation.

CBS

What's left:
The Crazy Ones
Hostages
Intelligence
The Mentalist
Friends with Better Lives
Unforgettable (no decision made)
Bad Teacher (Added May 7, 2014)

CBS is always just good enough that I screw up one or two of their predictions, but I generally have a good finger on their pulse.  I'll keep with the same red/blue designations from above, but these I can talk a little bit about separately.

The Crazy Ones

I quit this show very early in the season (after the second episode maybe), because it just wasn't for me.  Its ratings went on a horrible slide from its very high debut to where it's sitting at now.  This show is a POOR DVR performer.  Bad L+SD and bad DVR numbers mean The Crazy Ones has got to go.  Sorry to anyone I know who knows someone who's involved with the show.

Hostages

I thought this show was intended as a one-off, so I'm not really sure why it's even here.  At any rate, if it were a one-off, it was really just a burn off.  If it had the potential of other seasons, it lost that after the first or second episode.  Easiest cancellation EVAR.

Intelligence

Yeah, terrible L+SD numbers with okay DVR numbers do not make a renewal on CBS.

The Mentalist

I cannot even fathom why this show would be canceled, and The Good Wife would be renewed.  The ratings for The Mentalist are better week by week in DVR.  This is Sunday, people, a 1.4 in the 18-49 demo is enough for a renewal, and if it has any kind of DVR bump, that means more seasons.  The ONLY reason this show would not be renewed is due to pure politics.  And that appears to be a real potential with the show...

Friends with Better Lives

It's a little early for me to make this prediction, but I don't care.  It had decent premiere numbers with barely any DVR bump.  This week's numbers were a big fall from the premiere, and I'm predicting it has the same DVR bump.  I don't see this returning.

Unforgettable

This show is caught in some kind of strange limbo.  It should have been canceled after its first season (oh wait, it was! but renewed...huh?), and was then brought in as a Summer show.  Now part of its run is a late 2013-2014 TV season exhibition.  It did okay in the Summer, but it ain't doin' okay now.  If this show gets to return, it will also be because of pure politics.  There is evidently talk that this would go to The Mentalist's slot on Sundays provided that does not return.  Come on CBS, think seriously about this, do what you have to do bring The Mentalist back.  Keep in mind that if you renew this show, and put it on Sundays, you're pretty much obligated to give it a fourth season with horrific ratings.  Is that really what you want?  This show isn't worth backing, in my opinion.

FOX


What's left:
Almost Human
Dads
Enlisted
Surviving Jack
Family Guy (like I care about animation chances)

I've had my finger on FOX's pulse for years, and don't think I've gotten anything wrong of theirs in 2 years.  Maybe I have, maybe I haven't, it doesn't really matter.  There are two shows I'm singling out here to talk about, Almost Human and Dads.  Everything else is pretty obvious.

Almost Human had what would be considered decent ratings in L+SD almost all of its season (usually higher than the renewed The Following).  It also had very good DVR numbers.  If this show does not get renewed, it will be a TRAVESTY.  There's absolutely no reason for it to not get renewed, outside of pure politics.  If it doesn't get renewed, that will be two shows Michael Ealy's been involved with that should have been renewed, but weren't, and both would be purely out of politics in play.  Let's hope cooler heads prevail here.

Dads had anemic ratings throughout much of its season, but began recovering a little bit late in the season.  It sits firmly on the FOX sitcom bubble, in my opinion, but I can't in good conscience call for a renewal.  It's just not getting it done on DVR, and never has.  Because of that, and FOX's definite reliance on them (see The Following for precedent), I think it's gonna go.  I would not be surprised to see it renewed, with the expanded programming hours available next season, but I think it will go.  It could even cry foul over The Mindy Project's renewal (which has guaranteed FOX another 2 years of very low ratings with it), but The Mindy Project is actually a good show that's not being watched live, and is still being watched more than Dads when factoring in DVR ratings (which, as I said above, are important to FOX).

NBC

What's left:
Believe
Crisis
Dracula
Growing Up Fisher*
Revolution
Parenthood
About a Boy
Community
Hannibal
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

The fact that SVU hasn't been renewed yet could be a gift from God.  There's no real reason why it shouldn't be when factoring in all numbers, but if it is canceled, it will be a true Hallelujah! from me.  Law & Order is one of my favorite franchises in TV history, but I quit that stupid azz show this season, because I just couldn't take it anymore.  With the new Chicago franchise, Wolf should be more than happy to let this go away.  It got about four more seasons than it deserved.

Digression aside, it's like NBC is my twin from birth.  No matter how wacky my predictions have been based on conventional wisdom, I don't think I've been wrong about a prediction on their network since I started this (citation needed).  It's nice to see TV by the Numbers get on the bus and make some out there predictions this season (Hannibal has given us nothing other than sheer hope that it will come back, as I'm having extreme difficulty finding "practical" reasons for it to return despite it being my current favorite show).  I'll single out some of these, to try to give my reasons why I think they might return (or be canceled).  If you guessed that DVR was playing a huge role in these decisions, you'd be right.

Believe

Believe has terrible L+SD ratings, and is in a terrible time slot.  But, it in a big positive, it nearly doubles its ratings every week in DVR.  That's a huge jump that can't be ignored, in my opinion.  It's also a Sunday show, so NBC could easily renew this and not feel bad about it at all.  They might not, but they definitely could.  I'd renew it, and this isn't the most bizarre thing I'll write in this NBC prediction pile.

Crisis
If we look at the L+SD numbers, there's almost no discernible difference between this and the show I listed above.  So, why did I choose to cancel this and renew the other?  If you guessed DVR numbers, you'd be right.  Crisis has okay DVR numbers, but the part that plays the biggest role for me (L+3) is just barely above the bubble, or on the bubble, for Sunday shows.  Believe is significantly above the bubble in L+3.  That's why I'd cancel this, and renew that.

Dracula

I think Dracula will finally have a stake driven through his heart, even though Hannibal has not done any better in this time slot, or in DVR.  Dracula could make the case that it deserves to return, instead of Hannibal, but it's too busy loving Hannibal to choose itself over that.  Dracula would also prefer to stay out of Hannibal's rolodex.

Growing Up Fisher

NBC comedy ratings typically suck.  The ratings of this show suck less (are significantly above the bubble for L+SD), and the DVR numbers are acceptable.  I have no idea why this wouldn't be renewed, even if it's not.

Revolution

I don't watch the show anymore, but it's flown completely under the radar all season.  It has tepid L+SD ratings in a pretty terrible time slot.  However, it has quite good DVR ratings (L+3 above the line of NBC renewal, in my opinion).  If I were NBC, I would move this show to Fridays at 8pm (move Dateline somewhere else).  If they aren't willing to move it to Fridays, it should probably go, but this is definitely a viable Friday show (and would pair nicely with Grimm, I think).  I could very easily see it having a Hawaii Five-O type resurgence moving there.  Let's see if NBC is dumb or smart on this one.  This show should not die, even if it ultimately does.

Parenthood

Ah, Parenthood, you're the Rules of Engagement of NBC.  You take a licking but keep on ticking.  You came into the death slot on NBC (Thursdays at 10pm), and out performed every single show there in the last 3 or 4 years.  That alone should be enough to get you a renewal.  If you need a backup from the Principal, just use your excellent DVR numbers, and don't let them cancel you.

Community

Last season, I gave NBC a chance to be smart and move this, along with Parks and Recreation to Fridays (ensuring as many seasons as they want for both), but they didn't do it.  Of course, both shows' ratings have been terrible, and Community's DVR numbers are piss poor.  Wait, unless NBC does move both of those shows to Fridays next season, see you later Community.  But, I just gave them the best option for Fridays, Revolution.  Hmm, I don't know what to do now.  Since Parks got renewed, it will need a similarly themed show to go along with it.  Community is the only one of those types of shows left on NBC, so who knows?  There's no reason why Community deserves to stay, but NBC may have boxed themselves into a corner with what they did with Parks.  Hmmm, I'm calling that I'm right no matter what happens here. ;)

Hannibal

Hannibal, in my opinion, is THE best show on TV (that I'm watching).  If the EMMYs ignore this show again, I will absolutely lose it (okay, probably not).  Its L+SD ratings have been extremely disappointing behind Grimm.  I would have thought the exact same audience watches both, but I guess that's not the case.  I would have thought it would have lit up the DVR ratings, but that's not the case.  Instead, it's had poor L+SD ratings, and poor DVR ratings.  Other than prestige and quality (and that the show will end up somewhere if it's not on NBC), Hannibal hasn't really done enough to return.  I can cross my eyes and say, "but the L+3 numbers would be close to the Friday bubble", if I look hard, but that's about it.  I think quality, prestige, and suitors will make it return on NBC, but there is absolutely no way the numbers back up a renewal (as much as I want them to).  I'm expecting an announcement about the show's fate sometime in the week following the EMMY nominations. ;)

Well, that's some of my thought process behind why I think certain shows should be renewed or canceled, and some are even against the professional prognosticators.  I think there's a chance I won't be right on some of this stuff, but if I am, remember where you saw it.  Thanks for reading.

****UPDATE May 7, 2014****

After seeing last night's ratings for Growing Up Fisher, I've changed my mind and am now predicting cancellation.  About a Boy could have a similar change if it doesn't pick it up again in the next couple of weeks.

****UPDATE May 15, 2014 (The Tally)****

Now that almost all of the renewals and cancellations have come in, I can tell you how I did.  The only one that still hasn't been decided is Unforgettable (technically a Summer show, aired in the Spring as probably an audition for The Mentalist's time slot, which it reained), which is going to get canceled.  There's no reason for it to return.  It has bad Live+Same Day ratings, and terrible DVR ratings.  If they give it another season, they'd have to give it two more, so there you go.  I don't know if it will ever be announced, but don't expect anything positive. 

After certain news came out, I realized that I had missed Suburgatory on my list and didn't give a prediction.  I would have predicted renewal, but since you can't bet on the outcome of sporting events after they've happened, I won't give myself credit for it (being wrong).  It never had great ratings, but it typically did okay, and one more full season would have gotten it nearly enough episodes to get into syndication.  I guess its cancellation shows what kind of syndication prospects it had.  Other than that missed miss, I got everything right on ABC.  Oh, I should say that Black Box's fate has not been determined, but I'm already determining it for you right now. :)

I did get everything right on CBS, and when Unforgettable's fate is decided, I will be right there, as well.  Interestingly, what we learned about this season on CBS is that DVR ratings do matter to them.  CBS was the biggest dinosaur network around, but got on board the Amazon bandwagon with its outstanding Under the Dome deal (it had essentially broken even before it even aired, but became a huge hit), and now has started factoring in DVR ratings into its renewals and cancellations.  Who would have thought that the biggest dinosaur could become the most forward thinking network nearly overnight?  Nice job, CBS.  I know that network almost never expects to hear those words from me.

As for FOX, cooler heads did not prevail and Almost Human, despite being a very renewable property, was not.  Other than that, I got everything remaining correct.

NBC, tsk tsk tsk.  If there is one thing we learned about NBC this season, it's that DVR ratings do not matter to them one bit.  Not a single show with a large spread in Live+Same Day to Live+7 DVR numbers was renewed.  That's how you know that DVR ratings don't matter to them.  The shows I got "wrong" were Believe and Revolution, but if you look at what I originally wrote, I was basically right anyway.  I said the only scenarios where I thought the two shows would return, and they didn't fit in those scenarios.  For a show like Believe, that was saddled with a terrible time slot and performed well in DVR ratings, it has to be disappointing.  The same could probably be said for Revolution, but it now looks like NBC is the only dinosaur network left, and the only one that apparently does not factor DVR ratings into any renewals (Parks and Recreation got the 30 Rock treatment, so it doesn't count).  There's no discernible metric for why Hannibal was renewed, other than prestige, but it looks like NBC proved that even a stopped clock is right twice a day in regards to renewing the second best show I watch on TV (Fargo is number 1 for me).

Ultimately, I got three shows wrong, and all three shows were shows I could see getting canceled when I originally wrote this post.  If there's nothing else I take from this season, it's that we can't rely on DVR ratings for NBC until they prove otherwise.  I won't factor in DVR ratings into any future NBC predictions until I start being wrong again.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

The Essence of NBC's Hannibal Lecter

While watching last night's episode of Hannibal (NBC, Fridays at 10pm ET), I came to realize that his character can be boiled down (lol) to the promo "poster" I created below.  I used the most appropriate image I could find from google, and then did the best I could with creating the text.  If NBC wants to steal my idea and make it good enough to be real promotional material, I wouldn't mind.  ;) Hopefully you'll enjoy the tone of it.  Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Big News Out Of TNT

TNT has just announced that Major Crimes has been canceled, and that Kyra Sedgwick will return for a new season of The Closer.  Thanks for reading.

RENEW/CANCEL NEWS: NCIS (CBS), The Big Bang Theory (CBS)

Inexplicably, CBS has announced the cancellations of NCIS and The Big Bang Theory and has immediately pulled them from their schedule.  Thanks for reading.
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