Sci Fi TV Power Rankings: The Whispers Moves to Likely to Get Cancelled While Fear the Walking Dead Enters the Chart in the Unassailable Ranks

By | August 28, 2015

The_Whispers_ABC_CancelledThis is the final set of Power Rankings for the Summer and we already know the fate of most the shows that have aired over the past three months.  But several are still waiting on renewal/cancellation announcements and I address them in the rankings below.  There has been some movement since the last set of rankings with the renewal announcements for shows like The Last Ship and The Strain and also with Fear the Walking Dead entering the listings.  I know that I typically will not add a new show until it has aired at least two episodes, but I made the obvious exception for that one and it moved right into the Unassailable category (more on that below).  Apart from that, most of the movement is just incidental shifting due to renewal/cancellation announcements and new shows entering.  As a note, keep an eye out today for any breaking news because the last three times in a row that I have published these rankings at least one major announcement was made immediately afterwards causing me to revise them.

Biggest Movers:  TNT’s The Last Ship jumped from Number 32 to Number 9 as it has won the game once again (as expected) and no longer has to mingle with the unrenewed rabble in the lower rungs of the charts.   FX’s The Strain also got the renewal nod, though it did not rise quite as much, going from Number 33 to Number 23.  It’s numbers slumped more than The Last Ship this Summer and I don’t consider it on as solid of a footing going into its next season.  El Rey’s From Dusk Till Dawn slipped from Number 17 to Number 33 as it is back in play and no longer in the safe renewed ranks with its new season just kicking off.  And ABC’s The Whispers has dropped to the bottom of the list (and into the Likely to Get Cancelled category) as it continues to pull low numbers even for a Summer series.  Apart from that, most of the movement is just incidental shifts adjusting to the other activity on the charts.

Losers of the Game: Two shows were cancelled/ended since the last set of Power Rankings: Syfy’s Haven and USA’s Dig.  More on them below.

So now on to the rankings.

What the Rankings Measure:  The shows on this list are ranked by those least likely to get cancelled to those most likely to get cancelled, and these rankings are all about gauging a show’s likelihood of beating the Network Executioner.

Shows Included:  These rankings show all the active and returning sci fi / fantasy shows.  Though, this is limited to ones whose renewal / cancellation decisions are more heavily influenced by their ratings in the U.S., so imports like Bitten, Orphan Black, and Doctor Who will not be included here.  Also note that Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, etc. entries will not be included here because the streaming services do not share their viewership numbers, making it hard to rank their shows.  The shows that will be on the list will be those airing in the current season or those from prior seasons that will be returning at some point.  New shows will typically not make it to the list until they have aired at least two episodes (because I have to have some numbers to gauge them by).  Also, shows in their final season like Falling Skies will typically not be included because they are already on their way out.

Categories:  The list is broken into the following groups (descriptions found below and at this link): Unassailable, Renewed or Sure to Get Renewed, Likely to Get Renewed, Renewal Possible, On the Bubble, and Likely to Get Cancelled (though not all of those categories will be used each time).  And then there are also the Unrankable entries at the bottom of the list and below that I have the recently cancelled or ended shows.

Renewed Shows:  Note that in most cases, renewed shows will be ranked above those that have yet to receive a renewal even if their renewal was iffy and/or they under-performed while airing.  Basically, once a show has earned a renewal, then it has won the battle against cancellation (which is what these rankings are all about), at least until the next season starts.  At that point its ranking will typically slip down as it joins the non-renewed rabble and re-enters the battle against the Network Executioner.

Additional Info:  The number in parenthesis next to the show’s rank represents its prior position in the Power Rankings.  This list will come out once per month, usually during the second half of the month.  Note that there are a lot of sci fi / fantasy shows airing these days, so if I missed one or two go easy on me and just let me know in the comments so that I can make the proper adjustments.  For more information on the rankings and some of the terms used below, go to this link.

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August-2015 Sci Fi TV Power Rankings:

Unassailable: These are the shows that face no chance of cancellation (short of extenuating circumstances and/or an unprecedented ratings collapse) in their current/upcoming season and likely beyond that as well.

1 (1) The Walking Dead (AMC) Airing Status: Returning, 6th Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 7.4 Prior Season Rating: 6.8 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Ratings, YOY Ratings Incease
Cons: n/a
Intangibles: Strong Social Net Presence

Its fifth season was its strongest yet ratings-wise as it continues to perform far above ALL non-sports programming on television.  And now it has a successful spin-off series following in its footsteps (see Fear the Walking Dead below).  Even when its ratings do start to decline (they have to at some point, don’t they?), it has plenty of leeway and will almost certainly walk out on its own terms.

2 (2) Game of Thrones (HBO) Airing Status: Returning, 6th Season Airs Spring 2016
Avg Rating: 3.5 Prior Season Rating: 3.7 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Ratings, YOY Ratings Incease
Cons: n/a
Intangibles: Pay Cable Series, Strong Social Net Presence

It faced some controversy this season, but that didn’t hurt its numbers.  The slight dip in its average from last year was caused by the episode that aired over low-viewership Memorial Day weekend (the show took a break that weekend during its fourth season).  Despite the fracturing television audience that has lead to a ratings slump across the cable channels, this show continues to pull strong viewership.  And I don’t expect that to change next season.

3 (3) American Horror Story (FX) Airing Status: Returning, 5th Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.9 Prior Season Rating: 2.2 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Good Ratings
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season, Ratings Decline YOY
Intangibles: Strong Social Net Presence

Its numbers dropped in it fourth season, but not to levels of any concern.  And its story resets this Fall which means that the ratings can as well.

4 (4) The Flash (CW) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.4 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Decent Ratings, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

This show delivered the biggest hit that The CW has had in years and looks to be racing into a strong second season.  Expect this to be the tentpole show for the fifth place network for a while.

5 (5) Teen Wolf (MTV) Airing Status: Returning, Second Half of 5th Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 0.5 Prior Season Rating: 0.9 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season, Ratings Decline YOY
Intangibles: Strong Social Net Presence

There’s a reason this show is in the unassailable category, proven by the fact that it never had to mix with the un-renewed rabble below as MTV greenlit its sixth season almost immediately after its fifth started.  And while the show’s numbers are down this year, it is in the syndication stretch.  At the end of this season it will have a decent number of episodes for the syndication market (92 total), and everything beyond that is just gravy.  Expect a likely seventh and possibly even eighth season out of this one.

6 (6) Arrow (CW) Airing Status: Returning, 4th Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.0 Prior Season Rating: 0.9 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Decent Ratings, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

It did ride the coat-tails of The Flash‘s success this past season (even though that was its spin-off), but it still has a strong core audience of its own.  Expect at least a couple more years from this one.

Fear-the-Walking-Dead-AMC-Cancelled7 (n/a) Fear the Walking Dead (AMC) Airing Status: Active, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 4.9 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Strong Ratings, Recognized Franchise
Cons: n/a
Intangibles: Strong Social Net Presence

Yes, I am starting this show off in the Unassailable category despite the fact that it has just aired one episode so far and that I prefer a new show to have at least two episodes under its belt before I add it to the list.  But the facts are that it set the record for the highest debut of a cable show ever. it is already renewed for a second season. and it is part of a juggernaut franchise.  Do I smell a third season renewal in the air already?

Renewed or Sure to Get Renewed:  These shows have received their renewal notice or are almost guaranteed to by the end of their current season.

8 (7) Supernatural (CW) Airing Status: Returning, 11th Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.8 Prior Season Rating: 1.0 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Long Running Franchise
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

The CW’s president says that he believes this show could go on forever.  But its numbers have been dwindling, so let’s see where he stands when the Fall ratings results start coming in.  Still, a 12th season seems like a good bet at this point.

9 (32) The Last Ship (TNT) Airing Status: Active, Airing 2nd Season
Avg Rating: 0.7 Prior Season Rating: 1.1 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Top 25 Cable Show
Cons: Ratings Declines YOY, High Production Costs
Intangibles: n/a

The renewal for this show was expected and I was tempted to move it up to the unassailable category.  But its ratings have dropped in its second season (though likely due to the current ratings slump environment) and it is an expensive show to produce.  Still, I would put good odds on it cruising into a fourth season.

10 (8) The Originals (CW) Airing Status: Returning, 3rd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.6 Prior Season Rating: 0.9 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Third Season Show
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

The broadcast network ratings slump hit this show hard in Spring, but it does have the coveted Third Season Show status on its side this upcoming season.  If the numbers stay low, there is the slight chance that The CW could cut it short and just tack it on to the syndication run for Vampire Diaries.  But I wouldn’t count that as a likelihood and consider it nearly a lock for a fourth year.

11 (9) Outlander (Starz) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Decent Ratings, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season
Intangibles: Pay Cable Series, Social Net Presence

This show slipped some during the second half of its first season, but it is still doing well enough for its network especially considering the current slump across the cable channels.  If it holds steady next season then it should be okay.

12 (10) Z Nation (Syfy) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.5 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings, Low Production Costs
Cons: n/a
Intangibles: n/a

This is Syfy’s highest rated show over the past year.  If that continues to hold true during its second season then the network may change its mind about a heavier focus on scripted science fiction shows and order more cheesefests like this one (and they already have one on order with Blood Drive).

13 (11) The Librarians (TNT) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.9 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Recognized Franchise

I wouldn’t call it a huge hit, but it did well enough for TNT especially during typically low-viewership December.  I expect this one to become a staple at the holiday time for at least a few more years.  (And we want Bruce Campbell back each year as Santa!)

14 (12) Humans (AMC) Airing Status: Active, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.4 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: International Partnership, Moderate Production Costs
Cons: Mediocre Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: n/a

This show has definitely not delivered The Walking Dead sized ratings (which airs on the same network), but it has apparently done well enough to get renewed.  AMC is partners with the British Channel 4 on the series and it has performed quite well over there.  It is also a relatively inexpensive show to produce, so the renewal announcement came as no big surprise.

15 (13) Once Upon A Time (ABC) Airing Status: Returning, 5th Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 2.2 Prior Season Rating: 2.2 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Recognized Franchise

This show started its fourth season with ratings at two year highs, but then it fell notably by Spring.  Of course that can be chalked up in a large part to the late season ratings slump across the broadcast networks and it is still one of their top rated shows on Sunday nights.  I consider it a possibility that ABC could announce its fifth season as its last, and if not I have a very hard time seeing it going beyond a sixth.

16 (14) Gotham (FOX) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 2.2 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Recognized Franchise

This show started the season strong but was hit hard by the ratings slump in Spring.  If it rebounds in Fall, then it should be in good shape.  If not (and it will have to compete directly against Supergirl on CBS), it could be another one of those two-season-and-out shows like Revolution and Resurrection.

17 (15) iZombie (CW) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.0 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: n/a

Its numbers in its first season were not spectacular, but good enough for the fifth place network especially considering that its production costs are likely not too high.  Plus it’s received very good buzz thus far, so if it can hold steady going into next year then it should be okay.

18 (16) Penny Dreadful (SHOW) Airing Status: Returning, 3rd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 0.2 Prior Season Rating: 0.3 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Low Ratings Expectations?
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Pay Cable Series, International Financing?

This one didn’t build its audience from its first season like I was thinking Showtime would want.  But apparently they still believed in it enough to give it a third season renewal.  It may have international financing backing it as well.

19 (18) Galavant (ABC) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 1.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Low Ratings Expectations?

This was one of the surprise renewals from the past season, but apparently ABC felt like it did a good enough job keeping the Sunday 8 PM EST timeslot warm while Once Upon A Time was on hiatus.  I’m also guessing that it is not too expensive to produce (though definitely more costly than the typical sitcom), so maybe it can continue to fly under the radar of the Network Executioner for a few years.

20 (20) Grimm (NBC) Airing Status: Returning, 5th Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.2 Prior Season Rating: 1.4 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: n/a

This show was once a strong contender on low-viewership Fridays, but the ratings slump hit it hard in Spring.  If it rebounds in Fall, then maybe NBC will be happy enough to keep it around because it plugs up a difficult hour on the schedule.  But I have to think that they have told the producers to keep an eye on the end game and be ready to wrap this one up if the numbers slip any further.

21 (21) The Last Man on Earth (FOX) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.6 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Low Production Costs
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: n/a

This show did well enough for a sitcom during its early weeks, but then dropped notably by the end of its first season.  I’m thinking that if it doesn’t rebound when it returns in Fall, then its survival chances are low.

22 (22) The Leftovers (HBO) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.8 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Pay Cable Series, International Financing?

This show was well below the lofty numbers that HBO’s Game of Thrones typically pulls and it was actually one of that network’s lower performing scripted entries last year.  But since the overnight ratings are not as important to the pay channels, they saw fit to give it another season to build its audience.  Though apparently the network did require some changes of its second season, and I’m thinking that if the numbers don’t improve when it returns then HBO may decide it doesn’t have any additional space leftover on its schedule to keep it around.

the-strain-fx-cancelled23 (33) The Strain (FX) Airing Status: Active, 2nd Season Airs Summer 2015
Avg Rating: 0.6 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Well Known Creator?
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: n/a

This show got the renewal nod, but its numbers are definitely down from its first season.  That can be chalked up in part to the ratings slump hitting the cable channels of late, but it will at least need to hold steady next year if it wants a fourth season.

24 (23) Agent Carter (ABC) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 1.4 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Support from Disney

The ratings for this show were definitely nothing to crow about, but apparently it did well enough as a placeholder for Agents of SHIELD (which has had its own ratings struggles).  I’m sure the Disney brass had a lot to do with it coming back as it is part of their multi-billion dollar Avengers franchise, and the kind words from the critics likely helped as well.  But I believe its fate is closely tied to Agents of SHIELD, so if that one falters (see next entry) then this one will likely go as well.

25 (24) Agents of SHIELD (ABC) Airing Status: Returning, 3rd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.6 Prior Season Rating: 2.4 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Recognized Franchise
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY, High Production Costs
Intangibles: Support from Disney

This show started its second season on a low note and fell much further by the end of the year.  But the Disney brass apparently issued an edict that it would continue into a third year, though I am not giving this one the coveted Third Season Status which I go into in more detail at this link.

26 (24) Scream (MTV) Airing Status: Active, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.4 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Recognized Franchise
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: n/a

The renewal for this show was not a sure thing as it has slipped into the “ratings noise” level that we are seeing from many of the cable shows these days.  But apparently it is doing well enough with MTV’s target younger demographic and they decided to stick with it for another season.

27 (25) Salem (WGN) Airing Status: Returning, 3rd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 0.1 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Low Ratings Expectations?
Cons: Low Ratings
Intangibles: International Financing?

This was another, low-flying, “ratings noise” show that managed to win the game and get another season.  It apparently has international financing backing it, but at some point you would think its network would want more people tuning in on a weekly basis.

28 (26) The 100 (CW) Airing Status: Returning, 3rd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 0.5 Prior Season Rating: 0.6 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Low Ratings
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

This show benefited from The CW’s magnanimous wave of renewals that hit in January, but its numbers are definitely iffy even for the fifth place network.  The CW’s president has issued a call to action for the fans and if the numbers don’t improve next year then I’m thinking that will be its last.

29 (27) Person of Interest (CBS) Airing Status: Returning, 5th Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 1.5 Prior Season Rating: 2.0 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Top 25 in Total Viewership
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: n/a

Apparently CBS went to the eleventh hour in negotiations over this show and the shortened thirteen episode fifth season order suggests that could be its last.  There has been no official word on that yet, but let’s hope that the writers have a good conclusion planned for the upcoming season.

30 (28) 12 Monkeys (Syfy) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs 2016
Avg Rating: 0.2 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Recognized Franchise
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: International Financing?

This show barely registered in the ratings during its first season, but Syfy has been struggling in general of late.  I believe they gave it the second season to see if it can build its audience just like they did with low rated Helix the prior year.  But that one’s numbers dropped and it got the ax which could be the same fate facing 12 Monkeys if its rating do not rise next year.

31 (29) Stitchers (ABC Family) Airing Status: Returning, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed
Cons: Moderate Debut Ratings, Ratings Decline in Season, Mediocre Ratings
Intangibles: International Financing?

Yet another “ratings noise” show that earned a renewal which was a bit surprising considering it regularly lost over half the audience of its lead-in (though arguably it’s not the best pairing with Pretty Little Liars).  But apparently ABC Family liked Stitchers enough to keep it around for another season, so we will see how long it can hang in there.

32 (30) Sleepy Hollow (FOX) Airing Status: Returning, 3rd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 1.5 Prior Season Rating: 2.6 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed, Relative Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: n/a

This show took a big drop in its second year, especially during the latter half of its season (which wrapped up before the ratings slump could be blamed).  It needs to get those numbers up or it is certainly a goner after its third season (and no, it does not get the Third Season Show status because of its limited episode runs in its first and second years).

33 (31) Star Wars Rebels (DXD) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Fall 2015
Avg Rating: 0.1 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Low
Pros: Recognized Franchise
Cons: Low Ratings in 18-49 Demo
Intangibles: n/a

Apparently the second season premiere was just a teaser because no more new episodes will air until Fall.  But this one is pretty much guaranteed a renewal anyway because it is more about keeping the franchise alive on the small screen and selling merchandise than drawing huge ratings.

Renewal Possible: These shows may not be top performers, but are currently doing well enough for their networks that renewal looks like a possibility.

from-dusk-till-dawn-elrey-cancelled34 (17) From Dusk Till Dawn (El Rey) Airing Status: Returning, 2nd Season Airs Summer 2015
Avg Rating: 0.1 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: Renewed
Cons: Low Ratings
Intangibles: Recognized Franchise, Low Ratings Expectations?

It has kicked off its second season, though I haven’t seen any ratings results yet because apparently the numbers for the El Rey network are not widely reported.  But it has generated enough good buzz that I believe it has a chance of lasting into a third year.

35 (34) Dominion (Syfy) Airing Status: Active, Airing 2nd Season
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Low
Pros: Relative Ratings
Cons: Mediocre Ratings
Intangibles: International Financing?

Its numbers are down which is no surprise in the current slump environment, but it is performing more consistently than Syfy’s other currently airing scripted shows.  It has slipped a bit further the last few weeks, though, so it needs to finish its second season strong if it wants to get a third.  But I would lean toward renewal at this point.

36 (35) Zoo (CBS) Airing Status: Active, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 1.1 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Low
Pros: Decent Debut Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: n/a

This continues to be the best performing genre show on the broadcast networks this Summer, but its numbers have wavered just recently.  It is an expensive show to produce because of the cost of working with live animals, so it can’t afford to drop any further.  But if it can at least hold steady through the rest of its first season, I believe its chances are decent.

37 (38) Dark Matter (Syfy) Airing Status: Active, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: International Partnership
Cons: Poor Debut Ratings, Ratings Decline in Season
Intangibles: DVR Gains, International Financing?

This is the best performing new show on Syfy since Z Nation last Fall and it has the international partnership with the Canadian Space Channel in its favor as well.  At this point, I am liking its chances for a second season.

38 (39) Killjoys (Syfy) Airing Status: Season Ended, Completed 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.2 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: International Partnership
Cons: Mediocre Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: International Financing?

This one has not performed quite as well as fellow new entry Dark Matter, but it is also propped up by the same international partnership with the Canadian Space Channel.  If DM get the renewal nod, I’m thinking this one will follow along as a rider.

39 (37) Wayward Pines (FOX) Airing Status: Season Ended, Completed 1st Season
Avg Rating: 1.1 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Ratings Increase In Season, Well Known Creator?
Cons: Moderate Debut Ratings
Intangibles: Strong DVR Gains, International Financing?

Its numbers were decent for a Summer series and it saw strong gains from delayed viewing (assuming that really means anything to the networks).  But it wrapped up in July and there is still no word on its fate.  The longer FOX delays any announcements, the further this show’s chances slip.

On the Bubble:  These shows have delivered moderately low numbers which could put their renewal chances in jeopardy.

40 (36) Under the Dome (CBS) Airing Status: Active, Airing 3rd Season
Avg Rating: 1.0 Prior Season Rating: 2.7 Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Amazon Partnership, International Financing
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: n/a

I know that this show has the Amazon partnership and international financing that make it profitable to CBS out of the gate, but its numbers are in the toilet (averaging only a 0.8 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demo for the past few weeks) and it has fallen completely out of the Top 25 (where it was once a mainstay).  I’m wondering if CBS isn’t thinking that they could fill that hour with something that would draw more viewers.  At best this gets one more season and even that is in doubt.

41 (40) Defiance (Syfy) Airing Status: Active, Airing 3rd Season
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: 0.5 Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: n/a
Cons: Mediocre Ratings, Ratings Declines YOY, High Production Costs?
Intangibles: DVR Gains, International Financing?

As far as its ratings averages, this show is right in line with Dark Matter and Dominion, both of which I believe are on track for renewal (see entries above).  But I believe that expectations are higher for this show.  It was once looked upon as the next flagship show for Syfy, and it appeared it might be able to carry that flag based on its first season performance.  But it has dropped notably each successive year and I believe that it is an expensive series to produce.  Syfy may not be ready to give up on it yet, but I have to believe it is on a short leash and may not get to continue for a fourth year.

42 (41) Extant (CBS) Airing Status: Active, Airing 2nd Season
Avg Rating: 0.7 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Medium
Pros: Amazon Partnership, International Financing
Cons: Poor Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Recognized Star

This series is at all-time ratings lows and it regularly lose over 60% of its lead-in audience from Big Brother.  It has the same partnerships / financing as Under the Dome, but I have to wonder if CBS isn’t considering dumping both of them after this season.

43 (44) Siberia (NBC) Airing Status: Season Ended, Completed 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.7 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: In Limbo
Pros: International Financing
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: International Syndication?

Many have considered this Summer 2013 entry long gone and it will almost certainly not return to NBC where it first aired.  But the first season has been running in international syndication and building an audience, and word is that things could still move forward for a second season.  Still, it has been an awful long time since that first season aired, so it seems like it may be running out of time.

44 (43) Proof (TNT) Airing Status: Season Ended, Completed 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Moderate
Pros: Debuted as Top 25 Cable Show, Well Known Star?
Cons: Ratings Decline in Season
Intangibles: International Financing?

It finished its first season on a low note and there has been no word of a renewal yet. Neither of those are promising signs for a show that slipped into the “ratings noise” levels not long after it debuted.  Still, both Stitchers and Scream got second season nods with similar numbers, so there’s a chance for Proof.

45 (45) Golan the Insatiable (FOX) Airing Status: Season Ended, Completed 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.5 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Medium
Pros: n/a
Cons: Poor Debut Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: n/a

For its short, six episode run, this show regularly drew lower ratings than the repeats of The Simpsons and Family Guy that acted as its lead-in.  I’m pretty sure it won’t be finding its way onto FOX’s schedule anymore, but it could switch to FXX where Animation Domination HD currently airs (that is where Golan got its start).

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Likely to Get Cancelled: These shows have seriously underperformed in their current season and appear surely headed to cancellation.

46 (46) Olympus (Syfy) Airing Status: Season Ended, Completed 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.1 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Elevated
Pros: Low Ratings Expectations?
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: International Financing?

It has been close to two months since this show wrapped up its first season and still no word on its fate.  Considering the fact that it barely registered in the Nielsens, that’s definitely not a good sign.  But it was an inexpensive series to produce, so Syfy’s partner the Canadian Super Channel could decide to produce the second season itself if the U.S. network chooses to back out.  I’d say it’s a toss-up at this point, but I doubt Syfy would be interested in another season.

47 (42) The Whispers (ABC) Airing Status: Active, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.8 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Elevated
Pros: Strong Debut Ratings
Cons: Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Strong DVR Gains

This series has sunk to levels that are bad even for a Summer show.  It has seen notable delayed veiwing gains, but I’m still not convinced that the broadcast networks give those number much weight.  And considering that the actors have been released from their contracts, the chances for a second season appear minimal at this point.

Unrankable:  These are shows that have received renewals despite ratings numbers that would have led to the cancellation of most other series.  Apparently other factors are driving their fates and I will elect to pass on making any predictions on their renewal/cancellation prospects.

Beauty and the Beast (CW) Airing Status: Active, 3rd Season Airs Summer 2015
Avg Rating: 0.2 Prior Season Rating: 0.3 Cancellation Alert: Renewed
Pros: International Financing and Syndication
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

This one has slipped to all-time low ratings levels, but it was renewed for a fourth year before it aired a single third season episode.  I guess it will keep going until the network executives in question recover the compromising photos that the producers apparently have in their possession . . .

Recently Cancelled: Currently or recently airing shows that have already been cancelled or that have ended

dig-usa-cancelledDig (USA) Airing Status: Ended, 1st Season Completed
Avg Rating: 0.3 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Ended
Pros: n/a
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: International Financing?

Still no official word on this one, so I am going to assume that no more seasons will follow and will count it as ended.  I have seen unofficial announcements that it has been cancelled, though nothing has been confirmed by the network.  But since USA billed it as a “limited run” series, they get to cancel it without really cancelling claiming that all along it was never intended to continue beyond its initial run (though series creator Tim Kring did tell Variety that more seasons were possible).

Hannibal (NBC) Airing Status: Cancelled, 3rd Season Airs Summer 2015
Avg Rating: 0.4 Prior Season Rating: 0.9 Cancellation Alert: Cancelled
Pros: International Financing
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

After getting cancelled, this show was shuffled to Saturday nights and–as expected–its numbers dropped even further.  Series producer Bryan Fuller is still shopping it around, but Amazon and Netlfix (the two best candidates) have passed on it.  He hasn’t given up, but time is running out with the stars having been released from their contracts and having already picked up new gigs.

Haven (Syfy) Airing Status: Cancelled, 2nd Half of 5th Season Airs Late 2015
Avg Rating: 0.2 Prior Season Rating: 0.4 Cancellation Alert: Cancelled
Pros: n/a
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

The cancellation announcement for this show did not come as a huge surprise because of its declining ratings and the fact that it was the last series hanging on from the early Syfy rebranding days. With all the development that the network currently has in the pipeline, apparently they decided not to funnel anymore to this show which was part of an era they are currently trying to step away from.  I thought they might have at least let it air the second half of its fifth season before making a decision, but apparently they wanted to go ahead an clean house to make way (and free up funds) for all of their new production.

The Messengers (CW) Airing Status: Cancelled, Airing 1st Season
Avg Rating: 0.2 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Cancelled
Pros: n/a
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season, Ratings Declines YOY
Intangibles: Social Net Presence

Few people were still watching when this show wrapped up its only season, and now it heads off to TV Oblivion.

The Returned (A&E) Airing Status: Cancelled, 1st Season Completed
Avg Rating: 0.4 Prior Season Rating: n/a Cancellation Alert: Cancelled
Pros: n/a
Cons: Low Ratings, Ratings Declines in Season
Intangibles: Netflix Streaming Deal? International Financing?

This show never pulled high ratings, but there were rumors that Netflix was interested in jumping onboard as a partner in order to get it a second season.  Apparently nothing could not be worked out, though, and A&E decided that it was not worth keeping it around for another year.

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