Cancellation Watch: The Magicians Returns Strong, The CW Superhero Shows Slip

By | January 28, 2017

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.

Season Premiere: On Wednesday, Syfy’s fantasy series The Magicians returned for its second season and pulled a 0.52 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic with 1.3 million total viewers. That tops the show’s first season premiere which had a 0.40 score and those are the highest numbers that Syfy has seen on a scripted series in at least two years if not longer. Consider that show to be pretty much a lock for a third season renewal at this point as it now surpasses Z Nation as the network’s top-rated show for the the season.  And next week, The Expanse returns for its second season in the lead-out hour from The Magicians which should help give a boost to its ratings.

Ratings Results of Interest:  The CW’s superhero shows returned from their Winter breaks this week, but surprisingly all of them where at or near their season lows for the year.  On Monday, Supergirl had a 0.8 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic which was down slightly from its season average of a 0.84 score.  On Tuesday, The Flash saw a notable drop to a 0.9 rating which was a season low and two ticks below its 1.1 season to date average.  In its new timeslot on Tuesdays, Legends of Tomorrow could only muster a 0.6 rating, though that is much better than the ~0.3 score that No Tomorrow had been pulling in that hour in Fall.  And on Wednesday, Arrow returned at a 0.6 rating which matches its season low score.  Not to fret for these shows, though, because all of them have been renewed for the 2017-18 season.  Still, It will be interesting to see if the ratings drops for these shows is a leading indicator that the Spring lull is already upon us.

On Monday, NBC’s Timeless remained low with a 0.9 score and 3.5 million total viewers, keeping that one firmly On the Bubble.  Over on FOX, both Gotham and Lucifer continue to look good with both pulling a 1.2 rating for the night.  But we will have to see how their extended hiatus will impact their numbers when they return late in the season.  On Tuesday, ABC’s Agents of SHIELD held low at a 0.6 rating with two million total viewers and I continue to believe that one is in its final season.  On Wednesday, Frequency improved to a 0.3 rating with 790k total viewers for its season finale.  That small bump up will do little to help the show, though, and it will have to hope it can find a bigger audience when it hits Netflix next month.  Over on Syfy, Incorporated improved to a season high 0.23 rating with 550k total viewers for its season finale, bolstered by the strong lead-in from The Magicians.  I’m still liking that one’s chances of returning for a second season.  On Thursday, USA’s Colony slipped a bit to s 0.25 rating with 780k tot viewers, but those still may be be acceptable for that net and the show’s first Season 2 episode saw a 133% improvement in Live+7 viewing, so I believe it is okay for now. And for those interested, The CW’s Archie comics based series Riverdale premiered with a 0.5 rating and 1.4 million total viewers.  Those are so-so numbers for a CW show, and probably somewhat disappointing for the network considering the promotion it has received.

The Charts:  There was little in the way of chart activity for the week among genre shows with MacGyver preempted, though surprisingly a repeat of Son of Zorn made it into the broadcast net Top 25 based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic.  It of course had a notable boost from the NFL playoffs bleeding over into Prime Time.  Expect to see more activity on the charts once The Walking Dead returns in two weeks.

Series Chart Curr Wk Rank Prior Wk Rank
MacGyver Broadcast Net Top 25 (Total Viewers) n/a 11
Son of Zorn (R) Broadcast Net Top 25 (18-49 Demo) 23 n/a

Be sure keep an eye out for the latest numbers and any breaking news throughout the week at the  Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site and Facebook Page. You can see the status of all the currently airing sci fi / fantasy shows at the Cancellation Watch page. 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.

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