Cancellation Watch: Freakish Gets Renewed by Hulu; What Are the Chances Frequency Will Get a 2nd Season? Plus the Scorecard

By | May 2, 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.

Renewal Announcement: Word broke yesterday that the horror series Freakish will continue for a second season on the streaming service Hulu. That series bowed back in Fall and completed its ten episode run and there has been no word about it since then. But yesterday, Hulu and the show’s production company AwesomenessTV announced the second season and that it would continue on with the story from the first year. I had originally thought this one was designed to be a season-long horror anthology, but apparently they have decided to stick with the original storyline for now. That centers around a group of high school students who take refuge in the school after an explosion from a nearby chemical plant surrounds the town with a green cloud that changes those exposed to it. The second season will likely stream later this year or early 2018.

Renewal Chances:  As we head into the May Upfronts for the broadcast networks I will be looking at some of this season’s marginal series and considering their chances for renewal.  The CW’s Frequency bowed last Fall as part of a time-travel trend that emerged across the networks (including Timeless, Time After Time, Making History, and more), and like those other shows has not done well in the ratings.  Its debut numbers where tepid even for the fifth place network at only a 0.4 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic.  The show slipped even further after that and was not included in the network’s blanket renewal announcement of its Fall shows (which also left out freshman dramedy No Tomorrow), nor did it get a Back 9 episode order (though I understood that the first season was intended to cap out at 13 eps).

At that point, it seemed certain that Frequency was dead in the water, but there is still a chance that the show could get the second season nod.  The CW has a deal with Netflix where their shows become available on the streaming service eight days after they complete their season.  So the show has been streaming there since February, and if the numbers look good (which Netflix does not share), then The CW could consider giving it a second season.  I’m not really certain where this one stands at this point due to the lack of data, but I do think that its chances of surviving into next year are slim considering its low ratings and all the development its network has in the pipeline.  But if fans respond to the Call for Action and rally over the next week and a half to get people to watch the show on Netflix (and also The CW’s website), that might give it a boost.  It’s pretty late in the game, but The Happy Net likes to renew shows so it’s not impossible.

Ratings Results of Interest: On Sunday, Starz’s American Gods debuted with a 0.36 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic with just under one million total viewers (it also placed at Number 3 in the Daily Nielsen Social Net Top 5). Those are good numbers for that network, but I’m sure expectations were high for this one because it is an expensive series to produce and had a lot of buzz leading up to its premiere. But since the premium cable channels aren’t impacted as much by the overnights (no advertisers) and since the leading indicator of the show’s audience looks good, don’t be surprised if we hear an early renewal announcement for this show. Over on AMC, Into the Badlands improved slightly to a 0.51 rating with 1.3 million total viewers. That show was renewed for a third season last week. On Friday, The CW’s The Originals remained low at a 0.3 rating with 960K total viewers, but it placed in the Daily Nielsen Social Net Top 5 for the night and I still believe it has a decent chance of getting a fifth and final season.

Scorecard: Starz’s American Gods entered high on the Scorecard at Number 4, but take that with a big grain of salt (rock salt?) as that show had a lot of buzz preceding its debut and I don’t have a lot of comparative data for Starz. This one is definitely performing above other shows on that network, but I believe that was the expectation as I mention above. Apart from that, most of the other movement on the Scorecard was just incidental, as we would expect at this point in the quarter.

The scorecard ranks all of the sci fi & fantasy shows’ ratings performance vs. their network’s ratings benchmark (see definition below).  Shows at or above their benchmark should be okay, whereas those slipping notably below are getting into iffy territory.

Scorecard based on the ratings through April 30th (metric definitions below):

Rank (PW) Series Net Std Avg Net Bench % Var Live+7 Avg Rtg Status
1 (1) The Walking Dead AMC 5.39 0.60 798.2% 7.95 Renewed
2 (2) American Horror Story FX 1.58 0.60 162.5% 3.16 Renewed
3 (3) The Flash (O) CW 1.07 0.51 111.0% 1.89 Renewed
4 (n/a) American Gods STARZ 0.36 0.20 80.0% n/a Renewal Possible
5 (5) The Magicians Syfy 0.31 0.20 54.6% 0.73 Renewed
6 (4) Into the Badlands AMC 0.91 0.60 51.4% 1.70 Renewed
7 (6) Supergirl (O) CW 0.76 0.51 50.3% 1.37 Renewed
8 (7) Star Wars Rebels DXD 0.14 0.10 44.7% 0.34 Renewed
9 (8) Westworld HBO 0.80 0.60 33.8% 1.50 Renewed
10 (9) Son of Zorn (O) FOX 1.28 0.99 28.4% n/a Renewal Possible
11 (10) Arrow (O) CW 0.64 0.51 26.8% 1.16 Renewed
12 (11) Legends of Tomorrow (O) CW 0.64 0.51 26.6% 1.13 Renewed
13 (12) Z Nation Syfy 0.25 0.20 24.3% 0.42 Renewed
14 (13) Supernatural (O) CW 0.61 0.51 19.5% 1.11 Renewed
15 (14) Gotham FOX 1.13 0.99 13.3% 1.88 Renewal Likely
16 (15) Shadowhunters Free 0.28 0.25 11.2% 0.50 Renewal Likely
17 (16) Lucifer FOX 1.08 0.99 9.1% 1.85 Renewed
18 (17) Stan Against Evil IFC 0.08 0.08 -4.7% n/a Renewed
19 (18) The Librarians TNT 0.47 0.50 -5.2% 0.88 Renewed
20 (19) Channel Zero Syfy 0.19 0.20 -5.8% 0.38 Renewed
21 (20) The Last Man on Earth (O) FOX 0.93 0.99 -7.0% 1.48 Renewal Possible
22 (21) The Good Place (O) NBC 1.25 1.38 -9.6% 1.91 Renewed
23 (22) Colony USA 0.26 0.30 -12.6% 0.60 Renewed
24 (23) The Expanse Syfy 0.17 0.20 -15.0% 0.39 Renewed
25 (24) MacGyver (O) (F) CBS 1.08 1.29 -16.4% 1.74 Renewed
26 (25) Guardians of the Galaxy DXD 0.08 0.10 -17.5% n/a Renewal Possible
27 (26) People of Earth TBS 0.33 0.40 -18.1% n/a Renewed
28 (28) Timeless NBC 1.11 1.38 -19.6% 2.07 Cancellation Likely
29 (27) Incorporated Syfy 0.16 0.20 -20.0% 0.34 Cancelled
30 (29) Aftermath Syfy 0.16 0.20 -20.8% 0.33 Cancelled
31 (30) Van Helsing Syfy 0.16 0.20 -21.3% 0.30 Renewed
32 (31) Ash vs Evil Dead STARZ 0.16 0.20 -21.5% 0.34 Renewed
33 (32) The 100 (O) CW 0.36 0.46 -22.5% 0.67 Renewed
34 (33) Once Upon A Time (O) ABC 0.94 1.23 -23.2% 1.58 On the Bubble
35 (34) Making History (O) NBC 0.69 0.91 -24.8% n/a Cancellation Likely
36 (35) Legion (O) FX 0.45 0.60 -25.0% 1.17 Renewed
37 (36) Teen Wolf MTV 0.22 0.30 -25.7% 0.44 Final Season
38 (38) Vampire Diaries (O) (F) CW 0.38 0.51 -25.9% 0.75 Ended
39 (37) The Originals (O) (F) CW 0.33 0.46 -27.3% 0.65 Renewal Possible
40 (39) iZombie (O) CW 0.33 0.46 -29.1% 0.70 Renewal Possible
41 (40) The Strain FX 0.42 0.60 -30.8% 0.85 Renewed
42 (41) The Exorcist (O) (F) FOX 0.67 0.99 -32.6% 1.09 Cancellation Likely
43 (43) Scream Queens (O) FOX 0.61 0.99 -38.7% 0.96 Cancellation Likely
44 (42) The Leftovers HBO 0.36 0.60 -39.4% n/a Final Season
45 (44) Agents of SHIELD (O) ABC 0.74 1.23 -39.5% 1.61 Cancellation Likely
46 (46) Grimm (O) (F) NBC 0.80 1.38 -42.2% 1.43 Ended
47 (45) Beyond Free 0.14 0.25 -42.7% n/a Renewed
48 (47) Powerless (O) NBC 0.70 1.24 -43.5% n/a Cancelled
49 (48) Sleepy Hollow (O) (F) FOX 0.51 0.91 -44.3% 0.94 On the Bubble
50 (49) Emerald City (O) (F) NBC 0.69 1.24 -44.4% 1.23 Cancellation Likely
51 (50) Frequency (O) CW 0.28 0.51 -45.3% 0.51 Cancellation Likely
52 (51) Salem WGN 0.08 0.15 -48.0% n/a Cancelled
53 (52) Falling Water USA 0.15 0.30 -51.0% 0.30 Renewed
54 (53) Time After Time ABC 0.53 1.21 -56.6% 0.70 Cancelled
55 (54) Dirk Gentlys Holistic Detective Agency BBCA 0.09 0.40 -77.5% n/a Renewed

Metric Definitions:

Rank (PW): Current rank based on the variance of a show’s season to date ratings average vs. its network’s benchmark (see definition below).  The number in parenthesis is the prior week’s rank.  Note that shows on the streaming services are not included because of insufficient viewership data and foreign imports like Doctor Who will not be included because they rely more heavily on their viewership in their home countries.

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. These typically just apply to the broadcast networks where they are more of a factor.

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

Net Bench:  (Network Benchmark) For the broadcast networks, this is the net’s season to date average rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic for non-sports, non-special, non-repeat broadcasts (for FOX, Empire is also excluded because it counts as an outlier).  For the cable channels, this is the lowest level at which a show is typically renewed by that network if there are enough genre entries on that channel to provide a decent sample.  But note that with cable entries intangibles such as international and/or streaming partnerships can play an important factor in a shows survival and that is not measured here.

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

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

Status: My assessment of the likelihood that a show will get renewed or cancelled. The statuses are Renewal Likely, Renewal Possible, On the Bubble, Cancellation Likely (plus Renewed and Cancelled/Ended)

Ratings Source: ShowBuzzDaily and TV by the Numbers

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