Is your favorite show in danger of being canceled?

I’m really digging TV By the Numbers, which always seems to have good ratings information. They have a Cancel/Renewal Index (click here for ABC) which attempts to handicap the chances of a show being canceled or renewed.

As you can see from the ABC page, there are nine shows that the site deems “likely to be canceled,” including “Better Off Ted,” “The Deep End,” “the forgotten” and, somewhat surprisingly, “FlashForward.” I guess looking at the ratings, it’s not too surprising that “FlashForward” is on the chopping block, but it is surprising that the show hasn’t done better. ABC did run 10 episodes in a row, but then the show was off the air for 3.5 months before the “spring season” started up. One could argue that the network botched the scheduling, but given the small difference between the ratings of the final 2009 episode (2.1) and those of the first 2010 episode (1.9), it doesn’t hold much water.

Other random thoughts:

* “V” seems to be doing okay, though I think “FlashForward” is the better show.
* The numbers for “Medium” are a little surprising. It’s essentially the same show that was on NBC last season.
* I’m surprised that “Sons of Tuscon” has already been canceled. That is/was a funny show.
* It’s nice to see that “Fringe” already has another season, though “Human Target” is on the chopping block. It’s a fun show, but I’d like it if Christopher Chance were more of a womanizer, like James Bond. I can’t believe that he didn’t make a pass at Moon Bloodgood last week. Ridiculous.
* “Heroes” appears to be on the bubble, though the site says it’s probably a goner. That’s one show where they need to figure out a way to wrap things up so it just doesn’t go dark in the middle of the story.

Note: I removed all references to shows listed in grey. Grey apparently equals black, so shows listed in grey have already been renewed.

  

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How appropriate: “Medium” is dead yet possibly still alive

I’ll be frank: I’m pissed that NBC canceled “Medium.” In recent days, it had come to look as though it was virtually a lock for the series to return for a sixth season, but then the money talks began, and suddenly that certainty began to waver. In the end, the people at the Peacock wanted to cut the budget and drop the episode order, and when the studio – CBS TV – balked at the request, NBC took a pass and killed the series.

But as fans of Alison Dubois know, there’s dead, and then there’s dead.

Over at TV Series Finale, they’ve been discussing the matter, and given which studio produces “Medium,” the following bit of text will probably not be all that surprising to read:

There is a strong possibility that “Medium” could move to CBS next season. The show’s already in syndication and the studio would reap big benefits by producing new episodes.

One possible scenario has “Medium” being placed on CBS’ Friday night schedule, sandwiched between compatible “Ghost Whisperer” and “Numb3rs.” What do you think of that schedule?

You heard the man’s question: what do you think of that schedule? I have to tell you that, were I given the choice of “Dollhouse” or “Medium,” I’d go with the latter…and my suspicion is that I’m not the only one. I’m a Joss Whedon fan and have been for many a year, but “Medium” has been keeping me consistently creeped out for five years now, and I’m not about to give up on it now.

UPDATE: Over at the L.A. Times blogs, there’s a quote from CBS Television Studios which reveals just how annoyed they are about NBC’s decision not to renew the series:

“NBC’s cancellation of ‘Medium’ is inexplicable to us. The ratings don’t lie. ‘Medium’ outperforms many of NBC’s renewed shows. Despite inconsistent scheduling, ‘Medium,’ under the creative vision of Glenn Gordon Caron, one of the most preeminent producers in television, has always performed with distinction both creatively and commercially. Multiple-award-winning actress Patricia Arquette and the cast have delivered a stellar series for five consistent seasons. The awards and ratings speak for themselves. We believe the show has a significant future and await developments.”

Yikes. And, yet, the tone of the quote is one which shows that, at the very least, the studio has no intention of giving up the show without a fight. Fingers crossed that their affiliated network has the same enthusiasm.

  

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A few updates from Ausiello’s cheat sheet

Michael Ausiello is keeping track of all the cancellation and renewal news. Here are a few updates:

Castle: Could go either way. Now a safe bet.
The Unit: A long shot. Now hearing it’s a goner. Back to being a long shot.
Dollhouse: Could go either way. Now hearing it’s a long shot.
Fringe: Sure thing. Now officially renewed.
Chuck: Could go either way. Now a safe bet. (Yay!)
Life: A long shot. Now hearing it’s a goner. Now officially canceled.
Medium: Safe bet. Reportedly renewed for 13-16 episodes.
Southland: Sure thing. Officially renewed for 13 episodes.

I gave up “Life” last season when it failed to stand out, and I gave up on “Chuck” this season as it got too repetitive and silly. I know that there are a lot of “Chuck” fans out there that will be happy to see that it will likely return in the fall. “Medium” has been good this season and deserves renewal, as does “The Unit,” though it’s worrisome to hear that it’s a long shot.

  

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NBC releases fall schedule, no mention of “Chuck” or “Medium”

It looks like we’re not going to find out the fates of “Chuck” and “Medium” until May 19.

NBC unveiled its fall lineup this morning, but conspicuously missing was any mention of bubble shows Chuck, Law & Order, Medium, Life, or My Name is Earl. According to a Peacock insider, a final ruling on the fate of all five shows will come on May 19. (Medium and Law & Order are both expected back; insiders say NBC execs are just finalizing the episode counts.)

The network gave the go-ahead to four new dramas: “Parenthood” (a re-imagining of the film starring Peter Krause), “Trauma” (which follows first-responder paramedics), “Mercy” (a hospital drama that focuses on the nurses) and “Day One” (a post-apocalyptic tale of survival). Of the four, I’m most interested in “Day One.” (After all, is the world really clamoring for more medical dramas?) Here’s the pitch:

From executive producer/writer Jesse Alexander (Heroes, Lost, Alias) and director Alex Graves (Fringe, Journeyman), Day One tells the story of life on earth following a global catastrophe that has devastated the world’s infrastructures. Beginning with the immediate aftermath of the cataclysmic event, an eclectic band of survivors — played by Adam Campbell (Date Movie), Catherine Dent (The Shield), Julie Gonzalo (Eli Stone), David Lyons (ER), Derek Mio (Greek), Carly Pope (24), Thekla Reuten (Sleeper Cell) and Addison Timlin (Cashmere Mafia) — strives to rebuild society as they unravel the mysteries of what happened and face their uncertain future. The group, all residents of one apartment building in suburban Van Nuys, Calif., embarks on a quest for survival and discovers that hope is found in small victories — and heroes are born every day.

Sounds interesting.

The network also greenlighted the sitcom “Community,” which stars “The Soup” host Joel McHale and focuses on a group of community college students.

  

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Ausiello keeps track of the bubble shows

EW.com’s Michael Ausiello is tuned into the world of television, and his information can usually be trusted. He has an article devoted to the current status of all the shows (renewed, cancelled, on the bubble, etc.) and suggests that readers bookmark it. Here are his thoughts on a few of the shows currently on the bubble.

Scrubs: Prospects brightening.
The Unusuals: A long shot.
Eleventh Hour: Could go either way. Now a long shot. Hearing the crew is looking for other work.
The Unit: A long shot. Now hearing it’s a goner.
Dollhouse: Could go either way. Now hearing it’s a long shot.
Fringe: Sure thing.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles: A long shot.
Chuck: Could go either way.
Life: A long shot. Now hearing it’s a goner.
Medium: Safe bet.
My Name is Earl: Could go either way. Fox may rescue it if NBC passes.
Southland: Sure thing.
Privileged: Prospects brightening.
Reaper: It’s a goner.

I’m bummed to hear that the news on “The Unit” isn’t getting better. CBS invited Shawn Ryan to pitch story ideas for another season, and the show has been pretty great the last two years. It’s good to see that “Fringe” is considered a sure thing — I hadn’t heard much about how well it was doing ratings-wise this season. “Southland” continues to get good reviews. I don’t know that the world needs another cop show. My tastes are pretty particular after watching great shows like “NYPD Blue,” “The Shield” and “The Wire,” so I haven’t watched it, but if I keep hearing good things, I may dive in this summer when there isn’t much else on.

If you don’t see your favorite show on this list, be sure to check this link for the latest info. I’d like to see Ausiello tackle some of the basic and pay cable shows on FX, TNT, TBS, USA, HBO and Showtime, but this page only covers the major networks.

  

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