The June 30th deadline came and went this week, and ABC chose to let the contracts lapse for the actors starring in their Summer sci fi series The Whispers. That series had originally been planned as a mid-season entry but was pushed to Summer which resulted in the current contract issue while the show is still airing. ABC was happy with the debut numbers for The Whispers at the beginning of June, but its ratings have since slipped and they sank to a series low of a 0.8 score this past Monday night. I had previously said that I believed the numbers from that episode would be crucial to the show’s survival and I believe the dip it took put ABC back into wait-and-see mode. According to Deadline Hollywood, the network has not given up on it yet, but they may be considering some cast changes if it comes back for a second year similar to what FOX’s Wayward Pines could see (more on that at this link). Apparently the show’s story arc would support cast changes and series star Lily Rabe was never happy that production was moved to Vancouver. In addition, Milo Ventimiglia is being considered for the USA pilot Shooter, so he could leave now that he is no longer contractually tied to the show.
The good news for fans of the show is that ABC did not outright cancel it this week, though major changes could be on the horizon if its does get a second season. The bad news is that at the current ratings level the likelihood of renewal continues to diminish. I am moving it to a Medium Cancellation Alert status and that could go higher if its sees any further slippage in its numbers. Fans should probably make some noise to bring attention to the show because an upswing in its numbers and/or social network activity could help sway ABC’s decision as they continue to mull over the fate of the show.