Recapping the stories from the week relating to the renewal / cancellation of sci fi and fantasy television shows. This article may be reprinted in part or in whole as long as links back to the original post are included.
FOX Renews The Gifted for a Second Season
The TCAs kicked off this week, when the networks discuss upcoming projects and development with the Television Critics Association, and FOX used that opportunity to announce the second season renewal for its X-Men tie-in series The Gifted (Mondays 9 PM EST). That news came as no surprise because that show performed well in Fall and regularly placed in the Top 25 broadcast network shows when Live+7 delayed viewing was factored in. It also currently stands as the Number 3 new drama from Fall based on those delayed viewing stats. The Gifted had only a thirteen episode order for its first season since it relies heavily on special effects and needs additional production time, and should have about the same episode count in its second year. It will wrap up its current season this month and then should return in Fall of 2018.
The X-Files May be Coming to an End After Its Current Season
Gillian Anderson announced a while back that she does not plan to reprise her role as Dana Scully in FOX’s The X-Files (Wednesdays 8 PM EST) after the current season, and Chris Carter has said that he will not return to the show if Anderson is out. At the TCAs this week, FOX CEO indicated that there are no current plans for additional seasons:
You could’ve asked Chris, David, and Gillian at various times since the show originally premiered whether they would do more. Some days you’d get a ‘yes’, some days you’d get a ‘no.’ I would not exclude the possibility that there would be more. But not only is there no plan, there hasn’t been a single conversation. It’s too early to even speculate.
That show returned on Wednesday with ratings notably lower than what it saw in its first revival season, so FOX may not have much incentive to continue the series beyond the current season.
Bright Gets a Sequel with Most of the Principals Returning
Netflix has announced plans for a sequel to its urban fantasy film Bright, and the streaming service has confirmed that most of the team from the first movie will be returning. Will Smith and Joel Edgerton are set to reprise the leading roles and David Ayer will be back in the director’s chair. Max Landis will not be returning as writer, but Ayer will pick up the pen to write the script for the second film. The first movie had eleven million views over its first three days and Netflix has said that it is the highest-viewed original film on the service. There is no word at this point on when to expect the sequel, but I would guess that it will bow late 2019 or early 2020.
Ratings Trends: Kevin (Probably) Saves the World Returns Up but Still Needs Help
Mid-Season kicked off during the first week of the year, but most sci fi and fantasy shows that aired saw ratings declines. Whether that was just a holiday hangover remains to be seen. One show that saw a slight improvement was ABC’s fantasy entry Kevin (Probably) Saves the World (Tuesdays 10 PM EST) which returned from hiatus with a 0.7 rating based on same day viewing in the 18-49 demographic. That is better than what it was averaging late in Fall, but it will have to continue to trend up if it wants to avoid the network executioner. ABC did order three additional episodes of that show, but the network may be planning to use those to plug up a few extra hours in the schedule until it can get alternate programming in the the Tuesday 10 PM hour.
On Monday, FOX aired an episode of Lucifer (Mondays 8 PM EST) in its regular timeslot that hit a season low 0.7 rating based on same day viewing, though it may have been hurt by airing on the holiday. That show now goes back on break for a few weeks which will do nothing to help its ratings. It appeared to be tracking toward renewal as the current season began, but its numbers started slipping in late Fall. Its ratings during the second half of the season will be important to its survival, and Warner Bros (the studio that owns the show) may also have to offer FOX a good deal to convince the network to keep this one on the air.
Keep up with the ratings performance of the sci fi and fantasy shows throughout the week with the Cancellation Watch posts and also be sure to follow the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site for the latest ratings numbers as well as breaking news.