Cancellation Watch: Variety Believes Supergirl and Sleepy Hollow are Likely Renewals, Limitless is Too Close to Call; Plus the Scorecards

By | April 29, 2016

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.

Supergirl-CBSRenewal Prospects: We are just a little over two weeks away from the Upfronts when the broadcast networks will be presenting their schedules for the 2016-17 season (you can see the timing of that at this link), and some renewal and cancellation decisions need to be made by that time. The wave of renewal fever that has been infecting the broadcast networks of late has already set up an unprecedented number of genre shows for another season (you can see the status of all the currently active shows at this link), but there are still several awaiting word on their fate. Variety published a piece this week with their estimates on which shows will get renewed or cancelled based on what their inside sources are hearing, and it is mostly in line with what I have been expecting.

They currently have ABC’s Galavant as “dead”, which is not a surprise considering the ratings lows it sunk to in its second season, though that one has beat the odds before. They have Agent Carter as “mostly dead” which makes sense based on its ratings, though I heard other rumors that prospects were looking good for a third season. A cancellation would not be surprising, but Peggy Carter could still make an appearance in the fourth season of Agents of SHIELD. Among the CBS shows, Variety has Supergirl as “staying alive”, which is in line with expectations. They have Limitless as “too close to call”, and I believe that fans will riot if the network cancels that one. For FOX, they have Minority Report and Second Chance as “dead” which has been assumed on both of those shows for some time. Sleepy Hollow they have as “staying alive” which agrees with other rumors I have heard for that one, but FOX will have a hard time justifying bringing it back based on the ratings lows it has sunk to and the events of the season finale (which fans are none too happy about). NBC’s only genre entry Grimm has already been renewed and Variety offered no predictions for The CW’s one non-renewed show Containment. My estimate on that one is that it will be “limited run” and done.

The final renewal / cancellation announcements will be coming out over the next two weeks, likely before the Upfronts begin, so be sure to keep an eye on this site and the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter site for updates and breaking news.

Ratings Results of Interest: On Monday, FOX’s Lucifer held at a 1.3 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic for its season finale. That show has already been renewed for a second season. Over on Syfy, 12 Monkeys slipped to its lowest numbers yet as it could only scrape up a 0.1 rating for its second Season 2 episode. I currently consider that one a Call to Action show as are all of Syfy’s Spring entries. On Tuesday, The CW’s late-starter Containment pulled another 0.5 rating, which isn’t too bad for that network. But I’m still thinking that one will not survive past its limited run because there won’t be a place for it on the schedule next year with all the development the fifth place net has in the pipeline. Also on Tuesday, Limitless could only manage a 1.1 rating for its season finale which doesn’t look too good for that show. But it has been seeing significant delayed viewing gains and CBS has claimed that they are not paying as much attention to the overnights this season. We will know if that is just a bunch of netspeak, though, when that show’s fate is announced over the next couple of weeks.  On Thursday, The CW’s Legends of Tomorrow pulled a 0.7 rating based on the preliminaries.  If that holds, it will be an improvement on the season low 0.6 score the show slipped to last week.  In any case, that one has already been renewed for a second season.

The Scorecards: No change in the rankings this week which is not surprising at this point in the year. The standings are pretty much baked in and I don’t expect to see any major movement as we head toward the end of the season. The broadcast net scorecard ranks all of the broadcast net sci fi / fantasy shows’ ratings performance vs. their network’s 2016 season to date average for non-sports, non-special, non-repeat programming during the week (based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic).  Shows at or above their network’s average should be okay, whereas those slipping notably below are getting into iffy territory.

Broadcast network scorecard based on the ratings through April 27th (metric definitions below):

Rank (PW) Series Net Std Avg 2016 Net Avg Var Live+7 Avg Rtg Cancel Alert
1 (1) The X-Files (O) FOX 3.17 1.45 1.71 4.90 Low
2 (2) The Flash (O) CW 1.38 0.61 0.77 2.28 Renewed
3 (3) Arrow (O) CW 0.98 0.61 0.37 1.60 Renewed
4 (4) Legends of Tomorrow (O) CW 0.84 0.61 0.23 1.56 Renewed
5 (5) Supergirl CBS 1.68 1.50 0.18 2.55 Low
6 (6) Supernatural (O) CW 0.72 0.61 0.11 1.22 Renewed
7 (7) Once Upon A Time (O) ABC 1.39 1.33 0.06 2.39 Renewed
8 (8) Lucifer FOX 1.47 1.45 0.01 2.66 Renewed
9 (9) Gotham FOX 1.44 1.45 -0.02 2.54 Renewed
10 (10) iZombie (O) CW 0.53 0.61 -0.08 0.82 Renewed
11 (11) Angel from Hell (O) CBS 1.42 1.50 -0.08 1.90 Cancelled
12 (12) The 100 (O) CW 0.50 0.61 -0.11 0.90 Renewed
13 (13) Containment (O) CW 0.50 0.61 -0.11 n/a Moderate
14 (14) Agents of SHIELD (O) ABC 1.22 1.33 -0.11 2.23 Renewed
15 (15) Vampire Diaries (O) (F) CW 0.48 0.61 -0.13 0.96 Renewed
16 (16) Limitless (O) CBS 1.35 1.50 -0.15 2.42 Moderate
17 (17) Heroes Reborn (O) NBC 1.21 1.39 -0.19 2.13 Cancelled
18 (18) The Originals (O) (F) CW 0.40 0.61 -0.21 0.77 Renewed
19 (19) The Last Man on Earth (O) FOX 1.19 1.45 -0.27 1.94 Renewed
20 (20) Scream Queens (O) FOX 1.05 1.45 -0.40 1.89 Renewed
21 (21) Grimm (O) (F) NBC 0.91 1.39 -0.48 1.70 Renewed
22 (22) Agent Carter (O) ABC 0.80 1.33 -0.53 1.43 Medium
23 (23) Sleepy Hollow (O) (F) FOX 0.82 1.45 -0.63 1.47 Medium
24 (24) Galavant (O) ABC 0.64 1.33 -0.69 0.85 Moderate
25 (25) You Me and the Apocalypse NBC 0.69 1.39 -0.70 n/a Cancelled
26 (26) Minority Report (O) FOX 0.71 1.45 -0.74 1.24 High
27 (27) Second Chance (O) (F) FOX 0.65 1.45 -0.81 0.87 High

The cable scorecard is more subjective than the broadcast net version because it is not as easy (or useful) to compile network averages for the cable channels. So this is ranked based on the Cancellation Alert status of these shows from least to most likely to get cancelled.

Cable Scorecard based on ratings through April 20th (metric definitions below):

Series Net Std Avg Prior Yr Avg Var Cancel Alert
The Walking Dead AMC 6.48 7.37 -0.88 Renewed
Fear the Walking Dead AMC 2.58 3.79 -1.21 Renewed
Into the Badlands AMC 1.79 n/a n/a Renewed
American Horror Story FX 1.49 1.91 -0.42 Renewed
The Librarians TNT 0.52 0.92 -0.39 Renewed
Shadowhunters Free 0.41 n/a n/a Renewed
Teen Wolf MTV 0.41 0.49 -0.08 Renewed
The Shannara Chronicles MTV 0.39 n/a n/a Renewed
Colony USA 0.38 n/a n/a Renewed
Doctor Who BBCA 0.37 n/a n/a Renewed
Z Nation (O) Syfy 0.33 0.48 -0.15 Renewed
The Magicians Syfy 0.29 n/a n/a Renewed
The Expanse Syfy 0.21 n/a n/a Renewed
Ash vs Evil Dead STARZ 0.16 n/a n/a Renewed
Star Wars Rebels DXD 0.15 0.15 0.00 Renewed
Guardians of the Galaxy DXD 0.10 n/a n/a Renewed
Outlander STARZ 0.31 0.30 0.01 Low
Slasher Chill 0.02 n/a n/a Low
Time Traveling Bong CC 0.24 n/a n/a Moderate
Damien A&E 0.19 n/a n/a Moderate
Wynonna Earp Syfy 0.15 n/a n/a Moderate
12 Monkeys Syfy 0.12 0.20 -0.08 Moderate
Hunters Syfy 0.12 n/a n/a Moderate
Beowulf Esq 0.04 n/a n/a Elevated
The Leftovers HBO 0.33 0.77 -0.44 Final Season
Lost Girl Syfy 0.11 0.20 -0.09 Final Season
Bitten Syfy 0.09 0.20 -0.11 Final Season

Metric Definitions:

Broadcast Network Scorecard:

Rank (PW): Current rank based on the variance of a show’s season to date ratings average vs. its network’s season to date ratings average (see metric definitions below).  The number in parenthesis is the prior week’s rank.

Series: (O) indicates the show is owned/produced by the network and/or a sister studio. (F) indicates the show airs on Friday when ratings expectations are lower.

Std Avg:  The show’s season to date ratings average based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic.

2016 Net Avg:  The network’s season to date ratings average for 2016 only based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic for non-sports, non-special, non-repeat broadcasts.  Note the the post NFL Championship debut of The X-Files is not included in FOX’s averages because it is non-representative of normal Prime Time performance and it skews the numbers too much

Variance:  The variance between a show’s season to date average and the network’s season to date average as defined above.  The higher the variance, the better a show is performing vs. the network mean.

Live+7 Avg Rtg:  The show’s season to date ratings average based on delayed viewing up to seven days past the live broadcast.  This data is not available for all shows.

Cancel 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.

Cable Scorecard:

Series: (O) indicates the show is owned/produced by the network and/or a sister studio. (F) indicates the show airs on Friday when ratings expectations are lower.

Std Avg:  The show’s season to date ratings average based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic.

Prior Yr Avg:  The show’s season to date ratings average from its prior season (if applicable) based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic.

Variance:  The variance between a show’s season to date average and its Prior Year average as defined above.

Cancel 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.

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