Cancellation Watch: A Rundown of the Status of The Walking Dead, The Flash, Manifest, The Gifted and All the Fall Shows

By | December 27, 2018

The Fall season is pretty much done now and there is not much in the way of ratings results from last week, so instead of the usual Weekly Roundup post I will do a rundown of all of the shows from the past few months to see where they stand. The shows that have been renewed or are likely to be renewed are at the top, followed by those that are currently tracking towards renewal. After that are the shows that are currently struggling and need a Call to Action from their fans, and then I have included the ones that have already been cancelled this season. This list also includes the streaming service shows from the Fall season that we are still waiting to hear word on.

As we head into Mid-Season, be sure to follow our Weekly Roundup posts which look at ratings from the past week and have the status of the currently airing shows, and also follow the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site for ratings results and breaking news.

(Links below are to the show’s page on this site)




Renewed or Likely to be Renewed:

These are the shows that have already received a renewal notice or that are almost certainly going to be returning for another year.

Arrow (CW, Status – Renewal Likely): With the Crisis on Infinite Earths cross-over event (aka Project: Purge the Arrow-verse) scheduled for next season, Arrow looks to be assured to return for an eighth season. Whether that will be the show’s last remains to be seen. I go into more detail on the impact of the Crisis cross-over at this link.

Doctor Who (BBCA, Status – Renewed): This show got off to a strong start with the thirteenth Doctor (played by Jodie Whitakker) drawing in plenty of viewers to see the first female lead for the series. The numbers slipped some after the curious onlooker effect passed, but production has already begun on a twelfth season so expect this show to stick around for several more years.

The Flash (CW, Status – Renewal Likely): Changes are on the way for The CW’s superhero shows with next year’s Crisis on Infinite Earths cross-over event (aka Project: Purge the Arrow-verse). The ratings for The Flash are down year-over-year, but it is still the network’s top-rated show and should be back for a sixth year and more. I go into more detail on the impact of the Crisis cross-over at this link.

The Good Place (NBC, Status – Renewed): This show received the expected renewal even though its numbers have been down from its second season average. It is still doing well enough for an NBC show on highly competitive Thursday nights and it sees decent gains in delayed viewing, plus it is still drawing some good reviews from critics. Expect another season or two from this one.

MacGyver (CBS, Status – Renewal Likely): This show’s ratings are down from last year’s levels, but that likely will not matter. It is owned by CBS and it will have three full seasons after this year, so it is worth it to the network to keep it going at least one more season to get it to the episode threshold the syndication market prefers. Also, it plugs up and hour on low-viewership Fridays.

Outlander (Starz, Status – Renewed): This show has returned down in its fourth season (though it has been trending up the last few weeks), but Starz pays less attention to the same day viewing and more to the total airings for the week plus online viewing. This is an established franchise for the network that performs well overseas and it has already been renewed through a sixth season.

Riverdale (CW, Status – Renewal Likely): This show is down just a bit from last year’s numbers and it tends to get plenty of attention on the social networks. It also performs very well in its encore runs on Netflix and is on the verge of the syndication stretch. Expect it to be back for at least one more season if not more.

Supergirl (CW, Status – Renewal Possible): This show is down from last season’s numbers, but it has still done quite well for The CW’s first foray into Sunday night programming in a decade, and I expect it to be back to participate in the Crisis on Infinite Earths cross-over event (aka Project: Purge the Arrow-verse).  Whether the show continues beyond its fifth season remains to be seen which I look at in more detail at this link.

Van Helsing (Syfy, Status – Renewed): The renewal for this one was definitely not a sure thing because it numbers are down notably in its third season and it is a low-rated third year show not owned by Syfy (the network tends to cancel those). But it likely comes at a lower cost and it does have a strong following on the social nets. Those fans need to remain diligent, though, if they want the show to survive past its fourth season.

The Walking Dead (AMC, Status – Renewal Likely): The post-Rick Grimes era has not led to an improvement in the ratings for this show, but TWD still continues to rank as the top scripted series on cable and also outperforms most broadcast network shows.  Expect at least a tenth season from this one if not more.

Streaming service shows already renewed: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Netflix, Renewed thru 4th Season), Castlevania (Netflix, Renewed for 3rd Season), The Dragon Prince (Netflix, Renewed for 2nd Season), The Man in the High Castle (Amazon, Renewed for 4th Season), Titans (DCU, Renewed for 2nd Season)

Tracking For Renewal:

These shows have been performing well enough to be renewed, but I am not quite ready to say they will definitely be back for another season. Note that for the streaming service shows, I usually put those at Renewal Possible status because I have only sparse data to gauge their performance and streamers tend to renew shows more often than cancel them.

Charmed (CW, Status – Renewal Possible): The same day ratings for this show may not be great on highly competitive Sunday nights, but it is one of the most watched shows in digital viewing on the network’s website and app.  Since The CW has better adapted to the 21st century than the other broadcast nets, it factors online viewing more heavily into its model.  I would put this one at pretty close to Renewal Likely status, but I want to see how it performs in the second half of the season.

The First (Hulu, Status – Renewal Possible): Hulu was probably hoping that this high-profile series would follow in the footsteps of The Handmaid’s Tale and become another acclaimed, must-watch show for the streaming service. But the response has been rather mixed thus far. Still, the streamers tend to give their shows a couple of seasons to prove themselves, so this one could be back for a second year.

God Friended Me (CBS, Status – Renewal Possible): This feel-good show’s numbers in the 18-49 demo are just passable, but it continues to rank in the Top 25 based on total viewers each week. It fits in well with the CBS brand and I consider it more likely than not to return for a second year, but I want to see how it does in the second half of the season with no boost from NFL games.

The Haunting of Hill House (Netflix, Status – Renewal Possible): This show was promoted as a “limited series”, but the response has been pretty good thus far and Netflix could decided to extend that limited run into a second season.

Legacies (CW, Status – Renewal Possible): This one has not gotten off to a great start based same day ratings, but it is one of the most watched shows in digital viewing on the network’s website and app.  Since The CW has adapted to the 21st century better than the other broadcast nets, it factors online viewing more heavily into its model.  I would put this one at pretty close to Renewal Likely status, but I want to see how it performs in the second half of the season.

Legends of Tomorrow (CW, Status – Renewal Possible): This show is at series low levels so far in its fourth season, but I believe it will be back for at least one more year to participate in the Crisis on Infinite Earths cross-over event (aka Project: Purge the Arrow-verse). Whether it continues beyond that remains to be seen which I discuss in more detail at this link.

Manifest (NBC, Status – Renewal Possible): This show got off to a strong start based on same day viewing early in the Fall, but saw its numbers slip as the season progressed. But it has remained one of the most-watched broadcast network shows based on Live+7 delayed viewing. I would say that its chances for a second season are pretty good unless it takes a nose dive during the second half of the year.

Mars (NGC, Status – Renewal Possible): This show’s same day viewing numbers were down notably in its second year, but it relies more heavily on its global viewership stats. I consider a third season possible, though Nat Geo may decide to wrap it up at that point.

Origin (YouTube, Status – Renewal Possible): This show has flown mostly under the radar since its debut in November, but it is receiving mostly positive buzz thus far. YouTube is in the early stages of ramping up its scripted programming for its premium service, so it will likely stick by its shows and give this one at least one more season to find an audience.

Runaways (Hulu, Status – Renewal Possible): This one just returned for its second season, but it has been well-received thus far and I would say that it has a decent chance of sticking around for another season.

Supernatural (CW, Status – Renewal Possible): This venerable genre entry remains one of the better-rated shows on The CW. The network boss has already said that this one will continue as long as the lead actors want to stay with the show, so whether it has a fifteenth season is largely up to them.

Travelers (Netflix, Status – Renewal Possible): This cult-favorite just had its third season debut and it has a very loyal following that I expect will be lobbying for a fourth season. I would say there is a decent chance Netflix will reward the effort of those fans.

Currently Struggling:

These are shows that are struggling to pull in viewers and they can definitely benefit from a Call to Action from fans on the social networks to improve their prospects.

Black Lightning (CW, Status – Renewal Possible): The numbers are down for this show in its second year and it will not have too many episodes under its belt by season end. The CW prefers to renew shows rather than cancel them, but with the waning popularity of its superhero entries, this one could be the first casualty if its ratings remain low.

Channel Zero (Syfy, Status – Cancellation Likely): By all appearances, this one looks to be a dead show walking. Its ratings have been on a continual decline across its four seasons, and Syfy burned off the fourth year episodes across six consecutive nights outside of Prime Time. The show has stirred up some good buzz and has picked up a small but loyal following, but Syfy has been in the cancelling business of late and it looks like this one could be the next to fall.

Counterpart (Starz, Status – On the Bubble): This show has been well-received by critics but has yet to find much of an audience. Its ratings were low in its first year, and it only survived to a second season because it was renewed in advance. This year it is barely registering in the ratings and I have to consider it very much On the Bubble. It’s possible that Starz has international deals on this one that might prop it up, but if not, fans will have to hope that the second season does not end on a cliffhanger.

The Gifted (FOX, Status – Renewal Possible): This show is at series low numbers and it is not getting the same lift from delayed viewing that it was seeing last year. FOX owns the show and it is part of the X-Men franchise, so that works in its favor. But seeing as it is currently one of the network’s lowest rated shows (and is certainly expensive to produce) so it has to be counted as very much On the Bubble.

Nightflyers (Syfy, Status – On the Bubble): This show debuted with passable numbers for a Syfy series, but airing it on consecutive nights did not work in its favor as it was not able to sustain its nightly viewership. It may be doing better in digital viewing, but Syfy does not own this show which is a red flag for an under-performer on that network. A second season is still possible as the network tends to renew freshmen shows to give them a chance to build up an audience, but I consider that very much a tossup at this point.

Stan Against Evil (IFC, Status – Renewal Possible): This show’s numbers were down a bit in its third season, but IFC shows have been surviving on ratings scraps for a while now. It is likely not expensive to produce and has developed somewhat of a cult following, so it could be back for a fourth season.

Star Wars Resistance (Disney, Status – Renewal Possible): This show’s numbers are on the low side, but then animated series tend to live and die more by their merchandising than overnight ratings results. This one could stick around for a few seasons if it sells enough toys and maybe gets some support from fans.

Already Sent to the Network Executioner:

These shows have already been cancelled, but fans are doing their best to change the minds of the network execs or convince another venue to pick them up.

Daredevil (Netflix, Status – Cancelled): The cancellation for this one definitely came as a surprise considering it is still one of Netflix’s more popular shows. But it appears to be the victim of corporate-level bickering as Disney / Marvel was at odds with Netflix on the future of all the Defenders shows running on that streaming service. Fans are lobbying for the show and there is a chance that the upcoming Disney+ service could pick it up.

Iron Fist (Netflix, Status – Cancelled): As with Daredevil above, the cancellation of this show had more to do with corporate politics, though Iron Fist did see a notable drop in viewership in its second season. The show could be picked up by the upcoming Disney+ streaming service and/or the character could make appearances in some of the other Defenders shows.

Midnight Texas (NBC, Status – Cancelled): This show performed relatively well for a Summer entry when it debuted in July of last year, but shifting it to Fridays in Fall did it no favors. It was the network’s lowest rated show in the Fall and was sent to the Network Executioner as expected, though fans are trying to save it.

Z Nation (Syfy, Status – Cancelled): The cancellation for this one came as somewhat of a surprise as it was performing better than Van Helsing (which received a renewal) and one more season would get it to an episode count closer to what the syndication market prefers. Netflix is doing a prequel series titled Black Sunday, so perhaps they could pick up Z Nation for an additional season or two if fans lobby the streaming service.

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