Cancellation Watch Scorecard: Legacies Improves in the Rankings, Nightflyers Drops

By | December 12, 2018

Last week, Syfy’s Nightflyers entered at about the middle of the Scorecard rankings, but this week it dropped four slots from Number 14 to Number 18 after its ratings have been trending down. I have moved that one to Bubble status because it is on a network that is quick to cancel under-performing shows, especially those it does not own. The CW’s Legacies improved from Number 13 to Number 10 in the rankings as that show’s numbers have been better of late, and it appears to be tracking towards renewal. 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 December 9th:

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 0.35 94.0% 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 0.43 0.35 23.2% Renewal Likely
6 (6) Supernatural (O) CW 0.43 0.35 22.2% Renewal Possible
7 (7) Manifest (O) NBC 1.44 1.21 19.0% Renewal Possible
8 (9) Arrow (O) CW 0.38 0.35 7.8% Renewal Possible
9 (8) Supergirl (O) CW 0.38 0.35 7.8% Renewal Possible
10 (13) Legacies (O) CW 0.33 0.35 -4.2% Renewal Possible
11 (10) God Friended Me (O) CBS 0.95 0.99 -4.3% Renewal Possible
12 (11) Black Lightning (O) CW 0.33 0.35 -6.6% Renewal Possible
13 (12) Charmed (O) CW 0.32 0.35 -7.4% Renewal Possible
14 (15) Legends of Tomorrow (O) CW 0.30 0.35 -13.8% Renewal Possible
15 (16) Star Wars Resistance (O) Disney 0.08 0.10 -17.0% Renewal Possible
16 (17) Z Nation Syfy 0.14 0.17 -18.8% Renewal Possible
17 (18) Outlander (O) Starz 0.16 0.20 -20.0% Renewed
18 (14) Nightflyers Syfy 0.13 0.17 -25.9% On the Bubble
19 (19) MacGyver (O) (F) CBS 0.71 0.99 -28.5% Renewal Possible
20 (20) The Good Place (O) NBC 0.83 1.21 -31.3% Renewed
21 (21) The Gifted (O) FOX 0.69 1.07 -35.7% On the Bubble
22 (22) Van Helsing Syfy 0.10 0.17 -41.2% On the Bubble
23 (23) Stan Against Evil IFC 0.04 0.08 -46.9% Renewal Possible
24 (24) Channel Zero (O) Syfy 0.07 0.17 -57.8% Cancellation Likely
25 (25) Mars NGC 0.06 0.16 -62.5% Renewal Possible
26 (26) Midnight Texas (O) NBC 0.42 1.21 -65.7% Cancellation Likely

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

One thought on “Cancellation Watch Scorecard: Legacies Improves in the Rankings, Nightflyers Drops

  1. Kevin

    I’m not surprised at all by the low ratings of the Nightflyers. The show is a poor substitute for Dark Matter and the Expanse, both of which had much better writing, but SyFy cancelled them anyway. Nightflyers includes every cliche in the book as far as plot lines go.


    Including a ship with a cannibal crew, a captain with mommy issues, a crew including former lovers, a telepath with anger issues, a crewmember dealing with a death in the family, a telepath hiding her abilities, etc, etc, etc. Anyone notice that the life-sucking machine the Eagle 16 had, looked very similar to the machine on the Preacher? 😉 Oh, and the captain is an android! This is the most dysfunctional crew even seen on a sci fi show.


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