Sci Fi TV Power Rankings: Agent Carter and Sleepy Hollow Are On the Bubble, Helix is Likely to Get Cancelled with 12 Monkeys Not Far Behind

By | February 18, 2015

agent-carter-cancelledThe separation is getting clearer now with fifteen renewed shows and most of the rest struggling to survive.  Of the ones not yet renewed, only three are currently at a Low Cancellation alert level: Once Upon A Time, Person of Interest, and From Dusk Till Dawn (which I thought was going to return in Spring but which may not start up until Summer or later).  Once Upon A Time still looks like a lock for renewal, while Person of Interest needs to at least hold steady if it wants to come back for a fifth season. Agent Carter and Sleepy Hollow have now slipped to Bubble status and Syfy’s Friday shows are looking very weak at the moment.  Currently there are ten and possibly more shows that could face cancellation by May (with at least five almost certainly getting the ax), so while the Network Executioner didn’t have much to do during the first half of the season, he may be real busy over the next few months.  And then there’s Beauty and the Beast, which received a fourth season renewal and has thus proved itself bullet-proof once again (perhaps it should be Number 1 in the rankings)?  Of course, that’s why I set up a separate category for that one and Hannibal.  Note that the Target numbers for many of these shows have been revised to account for the continued ratings declines the broadcast networks are experiencing, and if the slump worsens they could be revised again.

Note that these rankings only look at shows currently airing or those that are returning at some point this season. New series that have aired one or less episodes will not make it into the rankings yet because I have to have some sort of a sampling to make a determination of their status. And import shows like Syfy’s The Almighty Johnsons or BBC America’s Atlantis which are not as heavily (or not at all) impacted by their ratings in the States are not included here either. The rankings order the shows by those least likely to get cancelled to those most likely. The number in parenthesis is the show’s prior rank. Any non-cancelled show in its final season will be addressed separately at the bottom. You can see the full schedule for the Fall shows at this link.

Cancellation Alert statuses from least likely to be cancelled to most likely: Low, Moderate, Medium, Elevated, High

Renewed or Sure to Get Renewed:

1 (1) The Walking Dead (AMC) – It failed to set a new record with its mid-season return, so maybe it has finally reached its ceiling.  But then it is currently so far ahead of any other scripted show on television that it won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.
StD Rating: 7.4 | Prior Season Rating: 6.8 | Curr Season Target: 2.0 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Ratings, Ratings Increase Year over Year, Strong Social Network Presence

2 (2) Game of Thrones (HBO) – While it’s not quite at The Walking Dead levels, this series set new highs in its fourth season (surpassing The Sopranos as HBO’s most watched series ever) and also regularly beat out most programming on the broadcast networks. It  looks  poised for an extended stay in the upper rungs of this list.
Prior Season Rating: 3.7 | Curr Season Target: 2.0 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Ratings, Ratings Increase Year over Year, Strong Social Network Presence

3 (3) American Horror Story (FX) – This show’s fourth season started strong but then slipped to the lowest numbers it has seen since its first season.  They’re still not bad for a basic cable series, but the show may have pushed its over-the-top horror a bit too far this year.  That’s not a problem, though, because it already has its fifth season renewal in the bag and it resets at that point.
StD Rating: 1.9 | Prior Season Rating: 2.2 | Curr Season Target: 1.0 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Good Ratings, Strong Social Network Presence
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines Year Over Year

outlander-starz-cancelled4 (4) Outlander (Starz) – By its network’s standards, this one counted as a major hit and started to develop a fair amount of buzz as the first half of its first season progressed.  I expect that to continue through the latter half of its first year and into its second season as well.
StD Rating: 0.3 | Prior Season Rating Avg: n/a | Curr Season Target: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Ratings Increase in Season, Relative Ratings, Strong Social Network Presence

5 (5) Star Wars: Rebels (Disney XD) – The renewal was never really in question for this one as it is more about keeping the franchise going and selling Star Wars products.  Consider it likely to stick around as long as Disney wants to keep cranking out episodes.
StD Rating: n/a | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 0.5 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Recognized Franchise, Good Debut Ratings

6 (6) The Flash (CW) – This series debuted strong and has held onto its audience throughout the season even as the ratings slump has been setting in across the other broadcast network shows.  And when its DVR numbers are factored in, this show ranks up with some of the Big Four network shows, so it counts as a huge hit for The CW.
StD Rating: 1.5 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 0.9 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Early Ratings, Relative Ratings, Fifth Place Network Series, Good DVR Gains

7 (7) Arrow (CW) – The renewal for this show was pretty much a given going into the year seeing as it’s a third season season series (meaning that a fourth year will get it to the episode count that the syndication market prefers to see) and because it airs on the fifth place network which has been known to renew shows even with lagging ratings.  On top of that, it has continued to hold strong the second half of the season despite the ratings slump across the broadcast nets (same with The Flash), so expect more DC entries to hit The CW’s schedule next season.
StD Rating: 1.1 | Prior Season Rating: 0.9 | Curr Season Target: 0.9 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Fifth Place Network Series, Third Season Series

8 (8) Gotham (FOX) – Ever since its renewal announcement, this show has disturbingly seen its ratings drop each week (until this week at least).  Will it follow the same path as NBC’s Revolution (and potentially ABC’s Agents of SHIELD) which started strong and received a renewal, but saw its numbers drop during its first season and into its second, after which it was cancelled?  Hopefully not, but I’d like to see it get its numbers back up.
StD Rating: 2.3 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Early Ratings, Recognized Franchise, Top 25 Based on Ratings,  Full Season Pickup, Good DVR Gains

9 (9) Z Nation (Syfy) – The renewal for this show came as no surprise seeing as it is an inexpensive entry and has been pulling a decent ratings average for Syfy.  Meanwhile, the network has failed to see much ratings success with the more science fiction oriented entries like 12 MonkeysDefiance, or Helix.  Does this mean that Sharknado: The Series will shortly be in the works?
StD Rating: 0.5 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Good Early Ratings, Low Production Costs.

10 (10) Supernatural (CW) – This show has slipped just recently which makes me wonder if some fatigue isn’t setting in with its fans after ten seasons.  Maybe it’s time to target its eleventh season as its last.
StD Rating: 0.9 | Prior Season Rating: 1.0 | Curr Season Target: 0.9 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Fifth Place Network Series, Consistent Performer

11 (11) The Originals (CW) – The CW’s strategy worked.  This show has performed better on Mondays than anything the network has aired on that night in quite a while.  But whether it can sustain its numbers on that evening remains to be seen.  Still, next year it will be a  third season season series, so its chances to coast into a four year look good.
StD Rating: 0.6 | Prior Season Rating: 0.9 | Curr Season Target: 0.7 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Fifth Place Network Series, Good DVR Gains

12 (15) The Librarians (TNT) – The renewal for this show came as no surprise even though its ratings dropped throughout its first season run.  Still, it ranked in the Top 25 among cable shows based on total viewers for each week that it aired and that included the weeks it ran during low viewership December.  I’m sure TNT will be happy to slot this one into the December/January timeframe each year if it can hold at or near its current levels.
StD Rating: 0.9 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 1.0 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Good Debut Ratings, Top 25 Show Based on Total Viewers, Recognized Franchise
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season

Grimm2012_P13 (18) Grimm (NBC) – The renewal for this show was pretty much expected even though its numbers have dropped year over year.  We will have to see if that continues into next year, but if it doesn’t slip too much then it could be safe for a sixth season because it plugs up that difficult Friday 8 PM EST timeslot.
StD Rating: 1.3 | Prior Season Rating: 1.4 | Curr Season Target: 1.2 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Relative Ratings, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

14 (12) Vampire Diaries (CW) – The renewal for this series did not surprise me, but I expected The CW to announce it as the show’s final season because of its lagging ratings.  They could still go that route seeing as its numbers remain at a series low, but you never know for sure with the fifth place network.
StD Rating: 0.8 | Prior Season Rating: 1.0 | Curr Season Target: 0.9 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Fifth Place Network Series, Strong Social Network Presence, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

15 (13) The 100 (CW) – Despite getting the third season renewal, this show has failed to build its audience this year.  If it finishes out at its current levels, I’m thinking there is a chance that The CW will make its third season a shortened one and call it a day at that.
StD Rating: 0.5 | Prior Season Rating: 0.6 | Curr Season Target: 0.7 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Fifth Place Network Series, Strong Social Network Presence, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Declines in Season

16 (14) Once Upon A Time (ABC) – It started the season with its ratings at two year highs but ended up going out with somewhat of a whimper.  Still, it’s in no danger of cancellation at this point.  I wouldn’t be surprised, though, if they renewed it for a fifth season and announced that as its final year.
StD Rating: 2.6 | Prior Season Rating: 2.2 | Curr Season Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Low
Pros: Top 25 Based on Ratings, Ratings Improvement Year over Year, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season

Likely to Get Renewed:

17 (16) From Dusk Till Dawn (El Rey) – It didn’t make a dent in the cable ratings during its first season, but it was on a new network that was more concerned about establishing its brand than waving Nielsen numbers around. This season they may expect better ratings, but I am guessing that El Rey will show some patience and prop it up for a third season run.
Prior Season Rating Avg: 0.2 | Curr Season Target: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Low
Pros: Low Ratings Expectations, New Network

Singles Vacations

Renewal Possible:

18 (17) Person of Interest (CBS) – This show is at it lowest ratings levels in four years in no small part due to poor scheduling by its network.  Still, CBS tends to keep veteran shows like this around if they sufficiently plug up a 10 PM EST hour timeslot across the week.  If they would do less preemptions and repeats, then I’m thinking it can hold at its current levels and should be okay.  If it does end up getting the ax, place the blame firmly on the network for their poor scheduling.
StD Rating: 1.6 | Prior Season Rating: 2.0 | Curr Season Target: 1.7 | Cancellation Alert: Low
Pros: High Total Viewership, Top 25 Based on Viewership
Cons: Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Decline in Season, Poor Scheduling

On the Bubble:

Sleepy-Hollow-FOX-Cancelled19 (19) Sleepy Hollow (FOX) – The numbers for this show keep slipping and FOX has recently turned the cold shoulder toward it, so its status is looking iffy.
StD Rating: 1.6 | Prior Season Rating: 2.6 | Curr Season Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Relative Ratings, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

20 (21) Agents of SHIELD (ABC) – This show started to see some improvement as it wrapped up its Fall run, but now its two and a half month hiatus will almost certainly be a momentum killer.  Still, it has good delayed viewing numbers and the Disney brass is likely pulling for it.  And if ABC decides not to bring it back for a third season, there’s always a chance that Netflix could take a flyer on it.
StD Rating: 1.7 | Prior Season Rating: 2.4 | Curr Season Target: 2.0 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Recognized Franchise, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Decline Year over Year, Decline in Season, High Production Costs

21 (20) Agent Carter (ABC) – The ratings for this show have not been spectacular, but with the delayed viewing factored in its looks okay.  I’m thinking that if Agents of SHIELD gets renewed, then this one will as well.  If not, then Agent Carter will almost certainly follow AoS into cancellation.
StD Rating: 1.5 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Recognized Franchise, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Mediocre Ratings, Ratings Decline in Season

22 (24) Forever (ABC) – I was hoping that ABC might be pulling for this show based on its DVR numbers, but the frequent preemptions and reruns are hurting its overnights which is what the sponsors (who pay the bills) are really looking at.  I’m starting to think ABC may just be using it to plug the schedule for the season and will dump it at the end of the year.  But then maybe they will keep it around next year to do the same thing.
StD Rating: 1.2 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 2.0 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Decent Debut Ratings, Full Season Pickup, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Decline in Season

23 (25) Ascension (Syfy) – For all the hype, this one pulled some pretty tepid numbers. And I didn’t hear much in the way of positive buzz across the social networks when it aired. This one may have been a still-born series anyway, and it doesn’t seem likely that we will ever get a resolution to that cliffhanger. But then it is always hard to say which direction Syfy will go.
Prior Season Rating Avg: 0.5 | Curr Season Target: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Medium
Cons: Mediocre Ratings

24 (22) 12 Monkeys (Syfy) – This show has slipped to only a 0.2 rating in the 18-49 demo based on the overnights for its last two episodes.  There’s a slight chance Syfy could stick with it because this one fits in with their move to heavier science fictions oriented programming, but it will need to get its numbers up to finish out the season for that to happen.
StD Rating: 0.3 | Prior Season Rating Avg: n/a | Curr Season Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Medium
Pros: Strong Early Buzz
Cons: Poor Ratings, Ratings Decline in Season

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Likely to Get Cancelled:

25 (26) Haven (Syfy) – The numbers for this show remained low throughout the first half of its fifth season, but the second half is still happening and they are bringing in a big name with William Shatner stopping by for a multiple episode arc.  If he can help get the numbers up, maybe there is a shred of hope for a sixth season.
StD Rating: 0.2 | Prior Season Rating: 0.4 | Curr Season Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Medium
Pros: Low Production Costs, Strong Social Network Presence
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

helix-syfy-cancelled26 (23) Helix (Syfy) – This show barely registered the last two weeks with only a 0.1 rating in the 18-49 demo based on the overnights and I can’t see Syfy bringing it back at those levels.  Maybe if it makes a surge over the next few weeks to finish out its season, but I wouldn’t count too much on that happening.
StD Rating: 0.2 | Prior Season Rating Avg: 0.4 | Curr Season Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Elevated
Cons: Poor Ratings, Ratings Decline Year over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

27 (27) Constantine (NBC) – With its season finale, this show has almost certainly aired its last episode on NBC.  But Warner Bros. studio appears to be fighting for it, so maybe it could shift to one of the cable nets (or Netflix) where it would be a better fit.
StD Rating: 0.9 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 1.1 | Cancellation Alert: High
Pros: Relative Ratings, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season

28 (28) Galavant (ABC) – It bowed to decent numbers, then dropped off pretty quickly.  But ABC gets to cancel this one (even though they will probably never officially cancel it) without admitting defeat.  They will just claim it was always intended to run for only four weeks (though they definitely built in the possibility for continuation).
StD Rating: 1.3 | Prior Season Rating: n/a | Curr Season Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: High
Pros: Decent Debut Ratings, Good DVR Gains
Cons: Decline in Season

29 (29) Resurrection (ABC) – This show started out as a surprise hit in its first season, but fell to disastrous levels by the end of its second year.  It saw some boost with delayed viewing, but not enough for its premium Sunday 9 PM EST timeslot (Forever gets a bit of a break for airing on a weekday at 10 PM).  The Season 2 finale for this one will almost certainly be its series finale.
StD Rating: 1.3 | Prior Season Rating: 2.5 | Curr Season Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: High
Cons: Ratings Declines Year Over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

Unrankable:

Both of these shows have received renewals despite ratings numbers that would have led to the cancellation of most other series (in fact, Hannibal pulled lower numbers than Dracula in the same timeslot yet the latter series was cancelled).  So other factors are apparently driving their fates and I will elect to pass on making any predictions on their renewal/cancellation prospects.  Note that both of these shows have been moved to Summer for their third season runs.

Hannibal (NBC, Returning for a 3rd Season) – It appears that NBC has made a long-term deal with this show’s studio and its international production arrangement means that it comes to the network at a lower cost. It sufficiently plugs up the difficult late Friday timeslot and the show has plenty of good buzz from the critics, so maybe it will coast through that seven year run that showrunner Bryan Fuller envisions.
Prior Season Rating Avg: 0.9 | Curr Season Target: n/a | Cancellation Alert: No Guess
Pros: Recognized Franchise, Strong Social Network Presence, Good Buzz from Critics
Cons: Poor Ratings, Ratings Decline Year Over Year, Ratings Decline in Season

Beauty and the Beast (CW, Returning for a 3rd Season) – This one has not even aired a single Season 3 episode (it’s scheduled for a Summer run), and it already received a fourth year renewal.  Is its international audience really that good? Is it the CBS/WB balance of shows theory that the TV by the Numbers guys have theorized? Or does The CW just want to be the network that renewed all of its shows this season?  (If so, good news for the upcoming iZombie and The Messengers.) All I know is that fans of The Tomorrow People, Star-Crossed, The Secret Circle, Cult, and other cancelled CW shows would like to have words with the network executives that keep renewing Beauty and the Beast.
Prior Season Rating Avg: 0.3 | Curr Season Target: n/a | Cancellation Alert: No Guess
Pros: Recognized Franchise? Good International Audience?
Cons: Abysmal Ratings

3 thoughts on “Sci Fi TV Power Rankings: Agent Carter and Sleepy Hollow Are On the Bubble, Helix is Likely to Get Cancelled with 12 Monkeys Not Far Behind

  1. Kevin W.

    If Syfy cancels Helix and 12 Monkeys so soon after this “return to real science fiction” drive they’ve been on, then there is no hope for that network.

    Reply
  2. Debbie J.

    I absolutely love Haven, once upon a time, Arrow, The flash, way too many to list..I watch or DVR them and watch them later if I’m not home..I cant wait for them to be on, try to be home and would really be pissed if Haven or once upon a time gets cancelled anytime soon! The problem is, there are way to many good shows on right now…I have to DVR most because I cant keep track of when they are on anymore..plus changing the day and time they were on at start doesn’t help! The competition out there is so fierce and overwhelming and at times that most are tending to families dinners or out having dinner that its no wonder ratings are falling or poor..I don’t know what else you can do to see that these are great shows and are being watched, but I know several people in my family in other states I have gotten them hooked on these shows because I started to watch them and boasted how good they were. I actually started watching them on Netflix, then went online to see if they were in production still and was so excited they were. PLEASE don’t cancel them after this season..It would another great one ending in a frustrating way that leaves you with way to many questions!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  3. Brandon

    Here’s to hoping Forever, 12 monkey’s, and agent carter get renewed! Pop the bubble.

    Reply

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