ABC Renew/Cancel - October 19: The Rookie is Likely to be Renewed

ABC's full fall slate has finally premiered, with the Tuesday lineup debuting this week. This line-up included Roseanne spin-off The Conners, new comedy The Kids are Alright, new drama The Rookie, and two returning comedies, Black-ish and Splitting Up Together. I have my initial predictions for all of those shows this week, along with one prediction change.

Format for predictions:
Show title (average 18-49 rating, season low-season high)

Certain to be Canceled

Likely to be Canceled
Fresh Off the Boat (0.6, 0.5-0.6)

The Kids are Alright (1.4)
Single Parents (1.1, 0.9-1.3)
Speechless (0.5, 0.4-0.5)

Likely to be Renewed
Black-ish (1.0)
The Conners (2.4)
How to Get Away with Murder (0.8, 0.7-0.8)
A Million Little Things (0.9, 0.8-1.1)
Modern Family (1.4, 1.3-1.6)
The Rookie (1.0)
Splitting Up Together (0.9)

Certain to be Renewed
American Housewife (1.1, 1.0-1.2)
The Goldbergs (1.3, 1.1-1.4)
The Good Doctor (1.2, 1.1-1.3)
Grey's Anatomy (1.7, 1.5-1.9)
Station 19 (1.1, 0.8-1.3)

The Rookie: While its premiere number isn't all that impressive, The Rookie still has some things going in its favor, in particular a weak drama slate on ABC and selling well internationally. This doesn't mean that the show could survive a harsh downward trajectory, but it does mean that it starts out in a nice position when it comes to renewal chances, even though it started out at a 1.0.

The Kids are Alright: The retention from The Conners on premiere night was reminiscent of The Middle's Roseanne retention last spring. However, The Middle was a ninth season show, while The Kids are Alright's episode this week was its series premiere, so ABC likely expected better, especially considering how compatible the show is with The Conners. Improved retention as the season goes on (or little declines in retention if The Conners consistently rates near its premiere rating) could get this show a renewal, but right now that seems very uncertain. This definitely falls under "let's see how it holds up".

The Conners: Despite the premiere being the highest rating ABC has gotten this fall, I didn't label The Conners as certain to be renewed. That is because of the cost of the main actors. If it turns out many people were simply interested in seeing what Roseanne is like without Roseanne, and the ratings fall harshly in the coming weeks, then the high price of the show could lead it to cancelation, even with good numbers.

Splitting Up Together: ABC's sophomore comedy continued to get the type of retention it was getting from lead-in Black-ish in its first season in its second season premiere. This makes Splitting Up Together likely to score another renewal. It should stay this way unless it starts dropping multiple tenths from Black-ish.

Black-ish: The show that once seemed to be one of ABC's favorites, with three seasons behind high-rated Modern Family and consistently ample promotion, doesn't seem to be as loved by the network anymore, with much less promotion as the comedy began its fifth season. A 1.0 premiere rating shouldn't really be something to worry about for an owned veteran comedy that gets award recognition, but I wouldn't consider Black-ish a lock this time around. If ABC finds success mid-season and believes in their comedy development, this could be a shock cancelation. But, most likely, Black-ish will return.

Speechless: I didn't think it would happen, but Speechless dropped this week to an ugly 0.4. Hitting that number so soon makes it seem like even the potential of syndication won't get the show a fourth season. Going into this season I expected Speechless to be an easy renewal, but this ratings versus potential future profits battle brings it down to a toss-up, and I wouldn't rule out downgrading it again soon.

What do you think of my predictions? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

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