Cancellation Watch: The Messengers Starts Low as Expected, More Movement on the Agents of SHIELD Spin-off

By | April 21, 2015

Unless otherwise noted, the ratings numbers below are based on the final overnights and may vary slightly from the preliminaries reported on the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site.

Ratings results for the sci fi / fantasy shows airing Thursday Apr 16th thru Monday Apr 20th (analysis and metric definitions below):

Vampire Diaries CW Thu 4/16 8 PM
Rating: 0.6 | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.3 | StD Rating: 0.7 | Target: 0.9 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It’s still low and still looking like next season might be its last.

Olympus Syfy Thu 4/16 10 PM
Rating: 0.2 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.7 | StD Rating: 0.2 | Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate

No improvement and it will only get a second season if the international financing is there.

Dig USA Thu 4/16 10 PM
Rating: 0.3 | % Chng PW: +50.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.1 | StD Rating: 0.4 | Target: 1.0 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate

It improved slightly from last week, but not enough to really make a difference.

Grimm NBC Fri 4/17 8 PM
Rating: 1.0 | % Chng PW: -9.1% | Tot Viewers (MM): 4.5 | StD Rating: 1.2 | Target: 1.2 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It slipped from last week.  At these levels, I don’t see this one surviving beyond next season.

The Messengers CW Fri 4/17 9 PM
Rating: 0.3 | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.2 | StD Rating: 0.3 | Target: 0.7 | Cancellation Alert: Medium

It tied for the lowest ever debut on the broadcast networks for a scripted show, but it still has a slight chance because it airs on the renewal-happy fifth place network. (More on this one below)

12 Monkeys Syfy Fri 4/17 9 PM
Rating: Season Ended | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.7 | StD Rating: 0.2 | Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

Season Ended.  Renewed for a second season.

Helix Syfy Fri 4/17 10 PM
Rating: Season Ended | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.6 | StD Rating: 0.2 | Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Elevated

Season ended.  Cancellation expected.

Outlander Starz Sat 4/18 9 PM
Rating: 0.3 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.1 | StD Rating: 0.3 | Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It held steady as it continues to deliver decent numbers for Starz.

Once Upon A Time ABC Sun 4/19 8 PM
Rating: 1.6 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 5.0 | StD Rating: 2.3 | Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It remained at a series low, but Josh Dallas indicated last week that it will be back for a fifth season.  That would come as no surprise, but it may be the show’s last.

The Last Man on Earth FOX Sun 4/19 9 PM
Rating: 1.4 | % Chng PW: +7.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 3.5 | StD Rating: 1.7 | Target: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It improved slightly and maybe it can trend up as it wraps up its first season.

Game of Thrones HBO Sun 4/19 9 PM
Rating: 3.6 | % Chng PW: -14.3% | Tot Viewers (MM): 8.0 | StD Rating: 3.9 | Target: 2.0 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It slipped from its series high numbers last week, but still easily beat everything else on television for the night except the CMAs.

Salem WGN Sun 4/19 10 PM
Rating: Pending | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): n/a | StD Rating: 0.2 | Target: 0.4 | Cancellation Alert: Low

Ratings results pending.

The Originals CW Mon 4/20 8 PM
Rating: 0.5 | % Chng PW: +25.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.3 | StD Rating: 0.6 | Target: 0.7 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

(Numbers based on the Preliminaries) It improved from its series low last week as it tries to climb out of its late-season ratings slump.

Gotham FOX Mon 4/20 8 PM
Rating: 1.5 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 4.3 | StD Rating: 2.2 | Target: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

(Numbers based on the Preliminaries) No improvement for this one.  Can it surge for its last few episodes to build some momentum going into its second season?

the-messengers-cw-cancelledSeries Premiere:  The CW’s late season entry The Messengers had its debut on Friday and pulled a 0.3 rating in the 18-49 demographic with 1.2 million total viewers.  That ratings score ties with Cult (a former CW entry) for the lowest debut ever for a scripted series on the broadcast networks.  It probably can be considered slightly ahead of Cult‘s low point, though, because The Messengers debuted on low-viewership Friday whereas the other show bowed on a Tuesday with higher ratings expectations.  But which show is in the lead in that dubious contest is of little consequence in the bigger scheme.  Cult was kicked to Fridays after a few weeks then ultimately cast to Summer for a burn-off run.  The Messengers started on Friday and will run into Summer, and it appears this is its burn-off run as the network has done little to help it find an audience with its late start and poor timeslot.  Of course, this is the fifth place network we are talking about which renewed all of its Fall shows despite some ratings laggers.  So I wouldn’t completely give up on the show just yet.  Maybe they want to see how it does once Summer starts and will consider keeping it on the schedule at that time of year like they are doing with Beauty and the Beast.  Though that show allegedly has a large international following which I don’t expect The Messengers has amassed, so maybe the Summer ratings won’t matter.  At this point, it certainly seems like The CW gave up on the show before it began, but if there is a fanbase out there they should start making some noise to let the network know they are watching.  It appears to have helped with The 100, so it couldn’t hurt for this show.

Development News:  Some more info on the potential Agents of SHIELD spin-off hit yesterday as it looks like AoS second season regulars Adrianne Palicki and Nick Blood will headline the new show.  Both have become fan favorites and their characters have some hidden agenda that has been hinted at this season that could carry over to the new series.  ABC has not greenlit anything just yet, and we likely will not hear the final word until the upfronts in May.  But development is continuing which is a good sign for the parent series as it’s unlikely ABC would cancel Agents of SHIELD but then do the spin-off.  And this new development info reinforces my previous assertion that this could help AoS get to a syndication friendly count of episodes by the end of next season if they package it together with the spin-off and Agent Carter.  Of course this continues to bode poorly for that latter series as I don’t see the network keeping that one around with AoS and a spin-off (plus, there’s another Marvel series in the works as well).  But as it stands now, a third season of Agents of SHIELD is looking more and more likely.

I will post the results for The Returned when they are available later today or early tomorrow.  Be sure keep an eye out for that and all the latest numbers and any breaking news throughout the week at the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site.  You can see the status of all the currently airing sci fi / fantasy shows at the Cancellation Watch page and also the latest Sci Fi TV Power Rankings post. And for more information on where I get these numbers and how I make my Cancellation Alert assessments, check out the Cancelled Sci Fi FAQ.

Metric Definitions:

Rating: Overnight rating in the 18-49 demographic for same day viewing based on the final numbers unless otherwise noted

% Chng PW: The percentage change +/- for this week’s rating vs. last week’s rating.

Tot Viewers: Estimated total viewers (age 2+) to tune in to the episode for same day viewing.

StD Rating: Season to date average for the rating metric tracked above.

Target: The estimated average rating that the show needs to sustain to get renewed.

Cancellation Alert: My prediction of the likelihood that a show will get cancelled. From least to most likely the statuses are Low, Moderate, Medium, Elevated, and High.

Ratings Source: TV by the Numbers and ShowBuzzDaily

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2014 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

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