Cancellation Watch Scorecard: Mars Enters Low in the Rankings But May Still Be Okay

By | November 29, 2018

I missed adding Nat Geo’s docu-drama Mars to the Scorecard last week but have rectified that with the latest set of rankings.  It enters pretty low at the Number 23 slot because its same day ratings are off by over 60% from its first season which aired two years ago.  As a benchmark for this one, I am using its prior season average–factored down a bit to account for ratings attrition–because I don’t have much data for Nat Geo’s other original programming.  But that might not be completely accurate because this series airs globally and did quite well worldwide last time around.  I don’t have its global viewership numbers, so I am missing a significant piece of data to gauge its status.  So essentially, I am treating this one like most of the streaming service entries and putting it at Renewal Possible status because I believe this one still has a chance to return for another season if its worldwide numbers are good enough.

Dropping this week is The CW’s Charmed which slipped two slots to Number 12.  That one is not performing too well in the same day ratings, but it is one of the network’s most-watched based on digital viewing. Most of the rest of the movement for the week was just incidental. For the ratings coverage from this past week, be sure to check out our latest Weekly Roundup post.




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

Scorecard rankings based on the ratings through November 25th:

Rank (PW) Series Net Std Avg Net Bench % Var Status
1 (1) The Walking Dead (O) AMC 2.03 0.50 305.0% Renewal Likely
2 (2) The Flash (O) CW 0.68 0.34 98.5% Renewal Likely
3 (3) American Horror Story (O) FX 0.96 0.50 91.8% Renewed
4 (4) The Purge (O) USA 0.41 0.30 36.0% Renewed
5 (5) Riverdale (O) CW 0.44 0.34 27.8% Renewal Likely
6 (7) Supernatural (O) CW 0.42 0.34 21.0% Renewal Possible
7 (6) Manifest (O) NBC 1.49 1.25 18.9% Renewal Possible
8 (8) Supergirl (O) CW 0.37 0.34 7.9% Renewal Possible
9 (9) Arrow (O) CW 0.37 0.34 6.5% Renewal Possible
10 (12) God Friended Me (O) CBS 0.97 1.00 -3.0% Renewal Possible
11 (11) Black Lightning (O) CW 0.33 0.34 -3.2% Renewal Possible
12 (10) Charmed (O) CW 0.33 0.34 -4.6% Renewal Possible
13 (13) Legacies (O) CW 0.33 0.34 -5.6% Renewal Possible
14 (14) Legends of Tomorrow (O) CW 0.30 0.34 -12.9% Renewal Possible
15 (15) Star Wars Resistance (O) Disney 0.09 0.10 -15.0% Renewal Possible
16 (17) Z Nation Syfy 0.14 0.17 -19.1% Renewal Possible
17 (16) Outlander (O) Starz 0.16 0.20 -21.3% Renewed
18 (18) MacGyver (O) (F) CBS 0.71 1.00 -28.5% Renewal Possible
19 (19) The Good Place (O) NBC 0.84 1.25 -33.1% Renewal Possible
20 (20) The Gifted (O) FOX 0.69 1.06 -35.2% On the Bubble
21 (21) Van Helsing Syfy 0.10 0.17 -40.4% On the Bubble
22 (22) Stan Against Evil IFC 0.04 0.08 -46.9% Renewal Possible
23 (n/a) Mars NGC 0.07 0.16 -56.3% Renewal Possible
24 (23) Channel Zero (O) Syfy 0.07 0.17 -57.8% Cancellation Likely
25 (24) Midnight Texas (O) NBC 0.40 1.25 -68.0% On the Bubble

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 or co-owned by the network and/or a sister studio. (F) indicates the show airs on Friday when ratings expectations are lower on the broadcast networks.

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 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 show’s 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.

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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