Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Chris Colley's TV Blog*'s Early Pointless Scripted TV Renewal/Cancellation Predictions For The Fall 2014 TV Season (Big 4 Networks Only)

You've probably noticed that I haven't done much writing lately.  Well, you're going to see a small flurry of posting over the next couple of weeks, and even a few more videos.  The first of these will be my yearly pointless predictions post.  Based on past "success", I'm going to give myself credit for being right on everything that's been canceled so far (I would have predicted cancellation for everything that has been).  This post still feels slightly early for me, but I'm afraid the train will get too far down the tracks if I don't post it.

The big question for this season is whether L+3 (Live+3 Day DVR Ratings) ratings will actually matter for NBC.  Last season, they canceled several bubble shows that were good performers in L+3 (as a quick note, if you see me say L+SD, I mean Live+Same Day ratings), but it's unlikely this will happen this season.  Even though I still have zero data that NBC cares about DVR ratings, I can make the case that because one show is so problematic in the ratings that other shows will be positively affected by that.  Part of why I've been waiting so long to do this post is to see how State of Affairs would perform in the DVR ratings.  I was supposed to get the DVR ratings for its second episode yesterday, but for some reason the State of Affairs DVR ratings didn't show up in the list.  So, I'm going to fly a little bit more blind than I'd like on the pick, and might end up revising my early decision about it as I get more data.  That said, I hope you enjoy what I have to say, and we'll see if I end up looking like a fool when all is said and done.

Chris Colley's TV Blog* Estimated Bubbles (this is a ratings threshold NOT an average):


Drama (Monday-Thursday)-1.6 in the 18-49 Demo
Drama (Sunday)-1.4 in the 18-49 Demo
Comedy (Monday-Thursday)-1.6 in the 18-49 Demo
Comedy (Friday)-1.2 in the 18-49 Demo


Drama (Monday-Thursday)-1.8 in the 18-49 Demo
Comedy (Monday-Thursday)-2.0 in the 18-49 Demo
Drama (Friday-Sunday)-1.2 in the 18-49 Demo


Drama (Monday-Thursday)-1.4 in the 18-49 Demo
Comedy (Monday-Thursday)-1.2 in the 18-49 Demo


Drama (Monday-Thursday)-1.6 in the 18-49 Demo
Comedy (Monday-Thursday)-1.6 in the 18-49 Demo
Drama (Friday)-1.2 in the 18-49 Demo

Correct guesses in blue
Incorrect guesses in red  

***An important note is that I predict L+3 ratings will play a factor on ALL networks, though their lowest impact will be on NBC, until proven otherwise.  If a show has ratings near or below the bubble, but has good DVR ratings, I will be putting it under "Renew It".  If a show has those same conditions, but mediocre or poor DVR ratings, I have no choice but to put it under "Cancel It".  There are a few exceptions to this methodology, and those exceptions, specifically related to the shows Forever and Constantine are where I think I am mostly likely to be in error.*** 

What I Predict Would Happen If A Decision Were Made Today (animation not factored in):

Sunday (Renew It):

Once Upon a Time (ABC)
Madam Secretary (CBS)
The Good Wife (CBS)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (FOX)
The Last Man on Earth (FOX-Did not pick a fate in time, but would have picked renewal)
A.D. The Bible Continues (NBC-Listed as Miniseries, but if it can be renewed it will be)
Secrets & Lies (ABC, didn't have this in the list as it was listed as a miniseries but would have predicted renewal)

Sunday (Cancel It):

Resurrection (ABC)
The Mentalist (CBS, Final Season)
Mulaney (FOX)
Galavant (ABC)
Revenge (ABC) *fate changed 4-14-15*
American Odyssey (NBC)
Battle Creek (CBS)

Monday (Renew It):

Castle (ABC)
2 Broke Girls (CBS)
Scorpion (CBS)
NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS)
Mike & Molly (CBS) 
Gotham (FOX)
Sleepy Hollow (FOX)
The Blacklist (NBC)
The Night Shift (NBC)

Monday (Cancel It):

The Millers (CBS)
State of Affairs (NBC)
The Following (FOX)

Tuesday (Renew It):

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC)
NCIS: New Orleans (CBS)
Person of Interest (CBS)
New Girl (FOX)
The Mindy Project (FOX)
Chicago Fire (NBC)
Fresh Off the Boat (ABC)
Undateable (NBC)

Tuesday (Cancel It):

Selfie (ABC)
Manhattan Love Story (ABC)
Forever (ABC)
Marry Me (NBC)
About a Boy (NBC)
Marvel's Agent Carter (ABC)
One Big Happy (NBC)
Weird Loners (FOX)

Wednesday (Renew It):

The Middle (ABC)
The Goldbergs (ABC)
Modern Family (ABC)
Black-ish (ABC)
Nashville (ABC)
Criminal Minds (CBS)
Law & Order: SVU (NBC)
Chicago P.D. (NBC)
Empire (FOX)

Wednesday (Cancel It):

Stalker (CBS)
Red Band Society (FOX)
The Mysteries of Laura (NBC)
CSI: Cyber (CBS) 

Thursday (Renew It):

Grey's Anatomy (ABC)
Scandal (ABC)
How to Get Away with Murder (ABC)
The Big Bang Theory (CBS, Already Renewed)
Mom (CBS)
Elementary (CBS)
Bones (FOX)
The Odd Couple (CBS)

Thursday (Cancel It):

Two and a Half Men (CBS, Final Season)
The McCarthys (CBS)
Gracepoint (FOX)
Bad Judge (NBC)
A to Z (NBC)
Parenthood (NBC, Final Season)
Backstrom (FOX)
Allegiance (NBC)
American Crime (ABC)

Friday (Renew It):

Last Man Standing (ABC)
Hawaii Five-O (CBS)
Blue Bloods (CBS)
Grimm (NBC)

Friday (Cancel It):

Cristela (ABC)
Constantine (NBC)


  • My reasoning behind putting State of Affairs in the "Cancel It" pile is that it's up against no competition, and has a great lead in.  It's performing poorly behind its lead in, and against a lack of competition.  While I might later change my mind, as I see DVR ratings, I can't put it in the renew pile in good conscience.
  • When FOX renewed The Mindy Project last season, they pretty much obligated themselves to make the show through its fourth season.  Despite lackluster ratings, and lackluster DVR ratings, The Mindy Project should definitely return.
  • Forever is my second favorite new network TV show this season, and it has a wide disparity in its Live and DVR ratings.  It's against two shows that definitely have people watching Forever on DVR once they've seen their favorite show live.  It has pretty much an atrocious lead in for the type of show it is.  It's certainly good enough to be renewed, but the show's ratings are just not good enough to get another season, in my opinion.  With the amping of the serialized storyline after the break, a decent ratings improvement could change my mind about this.
  • The Mysteries of Laura has been stable for most of the season.  Unfortunately for it, it's been pretty much at the same ratings Revolution had last season, but without the big DVR bump.  Revolution got canceled.  My lone caveat is next, and it is the only path to renewal I see for the show.  Even with that path, I still see very little chance of renewal.
  • NBC and DVR ratings are problematic.  They canceled several shows last season that had excellent DVR ratings, while every other network was renewing poorly performing shows with good DVR ratings.  However, one show has put NBC in a very awkward position in regard to DVR ratings, and because of that, I think they will have no choice but to make DVR ratings factor for *some* of their shows.  If they decide to grade on a curve across the board, that might help a few shows, but I think NBC is very much a cherry picking network when it comes to low rated shows, so don't hold your breath about a giant precedent being set.  If a precedent is set (it will be), it will probably be a fairly insignificant one.  Chicago P.D. is performing very poorly in L+SD ratings, but is performing exceptionally well in L+3.  If this show gets canceled, NBC is hopeless.  Because of this disparity in its ratings, I predict NBC will factor them in and renew it.  This could help shows like The Mysteries of Laura and Constantine, but I think that is pretty unlikely at this time.  NBC has to officially do something that screams a renewal based on DVR ratings for me to think they're a factor.  They haven't done that yet...but they will.
  • Elementary is performing extremely poorly in L+SD this season.  If it weren't about to head into its syndication season, I would be very concerned about it.  The good news is that it is, so it will come back for another season, unless something absolutely extreme happens.  It needs to get propped up somehow, but looking at CBS's current schedule, I can't see where it can benefit.  If CBS decided to move Person of Interest back to Thursdays, maybe that could help, but I doubt it.
  • Constantine is a very good genre show, and NBC hasn't been able to get anything to perform well at 10pm on Friday nights, including the truly exceptional Hannibal.  At some point, NBC has to put their foot down and either change the schedule by moving Dateline back to 10pm, or they have to stick with something.  Grimm and Constantine are two very well matched shows, even though a significant chunk of the Grimm audience doesn't appear to be interested in Constantine.  If you like Constantine, and aren't watching Grimm, you're missing out, though I doubt the same theory would play in reverse.  Constantine is certainly a polarizing show, based on its main themes, but I enjoy it and would like it to stick around.  Unfortunately, it does very poorly in L+SD ratings.  If you're a Nielsen watcher, and want this show to return, you need to start watching it live.  If it can get up to a consistent 1.3 in the 18-49 demo by the end of its run (it currently fluctuates between 0.9-1.1), I could see it getting renewed.  It does well in the DVR ratings, but I don't think how well it does will be enough to sway NBC, based on NBC's past history.  I think that's even more the case when absolutely no prestige will come from this show.  Also worth noting is that even though Constantine did not get a back 9 ordered, I think that means next to nothing with the typical time slot sharing that happens on Fridays at 10pm.  That doesn't mean I think its chances of renewal are better, just that I think that particular decision is a no impact one on Constantine's chances for renewal.  ****UPDATE 2-12-15:  I have read in the press that there is potential Constantine could move to Syfy for a second season, possibly under the original comic name, Hellblazer.  Based on what I've read, I would put the chances of Constantine returning on that channel well above 50 percent, as the rumors don't seem to be the typical PR babble.  It will get canceled from NBC, but I am cautiously optimistic this show will return.  I think it's a practically perfect match for Syfy, and am an board any decision that would put it there.  Stay tuned.****
Well, that's that for now.  I might change some of these predictions over time, and if I do, I'll note the date I changed it.  I'll also add my predictions for Spring 2015 shows in this same post, so bookmark it for updates.  Coming soon will be my 10 Favorite and 10 Lumps of Coal posts for 2014.  I hope you're looking forward to those.  Thanks for reading.

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