Sci Fi Cancellation Watch: iZombie Gets Six More Episodes, and What About Those “Meaningless” Overnights? Plus the Full Ratings Round Up

By | November 24, 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.

(Updated for The CW’s mid-season schedule announcement)

izombie-cw-cancelledEpisode Order: The CW announced yesterday that iZombie would get six additional episodes this season which will bring its total to nineteen.  But that’s not necessarily a vote of confidence because it falls short of a full season order of twenty two episodes.  All of The CW’s other genre entries currently airing are assumed to have received a full season order going into the year, and  I did not realize (or had forgotten) that iZombie had only a thirteen episode commitment to start the season.  And the fact is that it has been losing around sixty percent of the lead-in audience from The Flash, so the network execs can’t like that.  But it is currently tied with Vampire Diaries as the fifth highest rated show on The CW this year.  The six additional episodes are likely schedule spackle (as the TV Grim Reaper would say) to reduce the number of repeats the network has to air later in the season (and The CW had a lot of those last year).  And I still think the show will get re-scheduled to a different hour at mid-season [or not per the mid-season schedule announcement].  Fans should probably get active on the social nets to bring more attention to iZombie, especially if it does get shifted to a different hour.  Because a boost in its numbers would definitely help its cause for a third season.  And note that the TV Grim Reaper (formerly the Cancellation Bear) considers this show Certain to be Cancelled and his predictions are not to be trifled with. (The CW should also consider bringing this one into the Arrow-verse, because a crossover or two would definitely help its ratings.)

Overnight Ratings: So FOX has claimed that they will not be using the overnight ratings anymore and the CBS CEO has said that these numbers “mean nothing”.  This of course has nothing to do with the fact that their ratings are in the toilet, right?

They can deny them all they want, but the fact is that the overnights continue to act as leading indicators to audience size and that padding them out with Live+3, Live+7, or Live+30 numbers doesn’t turn a turkey into a peacock.  A ratings slacker like Minority Report is still at the bottom of the list when the delayed viewing stats are tallied and doesn’t suddenly jump up to Walking Dead levels.  I will go into this in more detail in an upcoming DVR Skew post, but unless the networks want to acknowledge the fundamental flaws in the Nielsen sampling process in general (some interesting info on that at this link), I’m not interesting in their delayed viewing double-speak.  When the Live+7 numbers are compiled, they are still based on the same Nielsen sampling process with the same built in flaws.  I will continue to report the overnights (as will other sites like TV by the Numbers and TV Grim Reaper) because they remain the leading indicators of a show’s audience.  And even when we have seen show’s demonstrate larger delayed viewing gains than others (like Forever and Constantine last season), that hasn’t typically been enough to save them from cancellation.  Now if we want to address the problems with the Nielsen system and the fact that the initial audience does not necessarily demonstrate the sustainability of a show, I’m all onboard.  But that’s not what networks like FOX and CBS want to do.  They want to divert attention away from their sinking numbers and point blame elsewhere.  Don’t be fooled by their rhetoric.  They still look at the overnights and will continue to do so until we have a major paradigm shift (which could be closer than you think).  And until that time, I will continue to report and make my predictions based on the overnights.  You can check my scorecard at the end of the season (over 90% accurate last year) to see how well that is working.

Ratings results for the sci fi / fantasy shows airing Monday November 16th thru Sunday November 22nd (metric definitions below):

(Updated for the broadcast network and cable Top 25)

Gotham FOX Mon 11/16 8 PM
Rating: 1.5 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 4.4 | StD Rating: 1.5 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It held steady with the prior week and remains one of FOX’s top-rated scripted shows, so it continues to hang in there.

Supergirl CBS Mon 11/16 8 PM
Rating: 1.8 | % Chng PW: +5.9% | Tot Viewers (MM): 7.8 | StD Rating: 2.2 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It improved from the prior week, so does that mean that it has leveled off? The numbers for the next few weeks will be crucial to its future.

Chart Activity:  This show returned to the broadcast network Top 25 based on the overnights for the 18-49 demo at Number 24 and slipped out of the Top 25 based on total viewers (it was previously at Number 23).

Minority Report FOX Mon 11/16 9 PM
Rating: 0.7 | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.7 | StD Rating: 0.7 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: High

It improved slightly from the prior week, though that is likely too little to late. Fans are trying to bring some attention to the show, though, as it heads towards its likely series finale next week. More on that at this link.

The Flash CW Tue 11/17 8 PM
Rating: 1.4 | % Chng PW: -6.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 3.5 | StD Rating: 1.4 | Net Avg: 0.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It was down one tick from the prior week, but it still beat Agents of SHIELD (for a second week in a row) and tied Limitless. A third season for this show is all but guaranteed.

Agents of SHIELD ABC Tue 11/17 9 PM
Rating: 1.3 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 3.6 | StD Rating: 1.5 | Net Avg: 1.7 | Cancellation Alert: Low

This show is now very much in iffy territory. I’m not raising its Cancellation Alert status just yet, but I have hashed out several scenarios for its fate at this link.

iZombie CW Tue 11/17 8 PM
Rating: 0.5 | % Chng PW: -16.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.2 | StD Rating: 0.6 | Net Avg: 0.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It slipped back down, but it also received an extension to its current season (more on that above). I still see this one getting shifted on the schedule at mid-season.

Scream Queens FOX Tue 11/17 9 PM
Rating: 0.9 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 2.4 | StD Rating: 1.1 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: Elevated

It remained low as it is almost certainly limited-run-and-done for this one.

Limitless CBS Tue 11/17 10 PM
Rating: 1.4 | % Chng PW: -6.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 7.5 | StD Rating: 1.6 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It slipped from the prior week, but it is still doing okay as a 10 PM EST entry for CBS. It can’t go much lower and remain safe, though.

Arrow CW Wed 11/18 8 PM
Rating: 1.1 | % Chng PW: +22.2% | Tot Viewers (MM): 2.7 | StD Rating: 1.0 | Net Avg: 0.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It jumped back up and expect the numbers to go higher next week with The Flash cross-over episode. Go ahead and add the fifth season of this show to the 2016-17 schedule.

Supernatural CW Wed 11/18 9 PM
Rating: 0.7 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.7 | StD Rating: 0.7 | Net Avg: 0.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It held steady and a twelfth season continues to look likely if the cast and crew are up for continuing on.

Star Wars Rebels DXD Wed 11/18 9:30 PM
Rating: 0.1 | % Chng PW: -25.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.5 | StD Rating: 0.1 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Low

This show continues to hold mostly steady, especially in its target younger demographic. Expect a third season renewal announcement at any time.

American Horror Story FX Wed 11/18 10 PM
Rating: 1.4 | % Chng PW: +0.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 2.6 | StD Rating: 1.8 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It held mostly steady as it appears to have leveled off. And it has already received its sixth season renewal announcement.

Chart Activity: This show dropped out of the Weekly Nielsen Twitter Ratings (prior week data not available).   In the cable Top 25 based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic it was at Number 6 (up from Number 9).

Vampire Diaries CW Thu 11/19 8 PM
Rating: 0.5 | % Chng PW: -16.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 1.1 | StD Rating: 0.6 | Net Avg: 0.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It was down slightly and I still contend this show will be wrapping up this season or next.  And it’s move to Fridays starting at mid-season would seem to support that.

Heroes Reborn NBC Thu 11/19 8 PM
Rating: 1.1 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 3.7 | StD Rating: 1.3 | Net Avg: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Medium

No improvement for this show. If fans can rally and draw some attention to it (more on that at this link), perhaps NBC will consider bringing it back for a second round. But if it stays at these levels that doesn’t look too likely.

The Originals CW Thu 11/19 9 PM
Rating: 0.4 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.8 | StD Rating: 0.4 | Net Avg: 0.6 | Cancellation Alert: Low

It has held steady for most of the season and continues to see good DVR gains.  And since it has the third season show status, meaning that one more year gets it to a syndication friendly count of episodes, it is practically guaranteed at fourth year.

Sleepy Hollow FOX Thu 11/19 9 PM
Rating: 0.8 | % Chng PW: -11.1% | Tot Viewers (MM): 2.8 | StD Rating: 0.9 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: High

The numbers remain low and this is another Call to Action show. If the fans can rally and bring it some attention, then maybe it has a shot at a fourth season.

Haven Syfy Thu 11/19 10 PM
Rating: 0.2 | % Chng PW: +5.6% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.7 | StD Rating: 0.0 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Final Season

This show remained mostly steady as it airs out its final season.

Grimm NBC Fri 11/20 9 PM
Rating: 0.9 | % Chng PW: 0.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 3.6 | StD Rating: 1.0 | Net Avg: 1.8 | Cancellation Alert: Moderate

The numbers remain low and I’m thinking this show is looking at its final season. If fans rally, it could get a sixth year, though.

Z Nation Syfy Fri 11/20 10 PM
Rating: 0.3 | % Chng PW: +21.7% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.8 | StD Rating: 0.3 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It improved slightly from the prior week and it has already been renewed for a third season.

Doctor Who BBCA Sat 11/21 9 PM
Rating: 0.3 | % Chng PW: +20.8% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.8 | StD Rating: 0.4 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Low

It’s pivotal episode on Saturday brought an increase to the ratings. And word is that a tenth season is in the works.

Ash vs Evil Dead Starz Sat 11/21 9 PM
Rating: 0.2 | % Chng PW: +25.0% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.4 | StD Rating: 0.2 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

The audience for this show has been building each week. That’s a good thing because it already has its second season renewal in the bag.

Guardians of the Galaxy DXD Sat 11/21 9:30 PM
Rating: 0.1 | % Chng PW: -11.1% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.3 | StD Rating: 0.1 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

This show held mostly steady, especially in its target younger demographic, and it has already been renewed for a second season.

Once Upon A Time ABC Sun 11/22 8 PM
Rating: Preempted | % Chng PW: n/a | Tot Viewers (MM): n/a | StD Rating: 1.6 | Net Avg: 1.7 | Cancellation Alert: Low

Preempted. It returns with a new episode this coming Sunday.

The Librarians TNT Sun 11/22 8 PM
Rating: 0.5 | % Chng PW: +11.1% | Tot Viewers (MM): 2.0 | StD Rating: 0.5 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Low

This show improved slightly and looks to be on target for a third season renewal.

The Walking Dead AMC Sun 11/22 9 PM
Rating: 6.7 | % Chng PW: +2.2% | Tot Viewers (MM): 13.2 | StD Rating: 6.6 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Renewed

It’s what-happened-to-Glen episode saw the numbers improve slightly and I expect even higher ratings for its Fall finale this coming Sunday.

Chart Activity: This show was at Number 2 in the Weekly Nielsen Twitter Ratings (prior week data not available).  It remained at Number 1 in the cable Top 25 based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic, and improved to Number 1 (up from Number 2) in the Top 25 based on total viewers

The Leftovers HBO Sun 11/22 9 PM
Rating: 0.3 | % Chng PW: +14.3% | Tot Viewers (MM): 0.7 | StD Rating: 0.3 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Moderate

This show improved slightly, but it is still performing at marginal levels that HBO execs can’t be very happy with.

The Last Man on Earth FOX Sun 11/22 9:30 PM
Rating: 1.3 | % Chng PW: +8.3% | Tot Viewers (MM): 3.3 | StD Rating: 1.3 | Net Avg: 1.6 | Cancellation Alert: Elevated

It improved slightly from the prior week, but it was still FOX’s lowest rated show on Sunday night. And considering that it goes into limbo at mid-season, its prospects do not look too good at the moment.

Into the Badlands AMC Sun 11/22 10 PM
Rating: 2.3 | % Chng PW: -27.9% | Tot Viewers (MM): 4.8 | StD Rating: 2.7 | Net Avg: n/a | Cancellation Alert: Low

It took a notable drop from its premiere, but even at a 2.3 rating it is performing better than most of the scripted entries on the broadcast nets at the moment. The key will be to see where its numbers land without TWD as its lead-in, though AMC may have already renewed it by then.

Chart Activity:  This show remained at Number 3 in the cable Top 25 based on the overnights for the 18-49 demo and improved to Number 4 in the Top 25 based on total viewers (up from Number 5.

Be sure keep an eye out for 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.

Net Avg:  The season to date average rating for the network for non-sports programming and non-repeats.  This data is available for the broadcast networks only.

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: ©2015 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

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