ABC Renew/Cancel Week 9: Single-Handedly the Biggest Mixed Bag of All the Messy Broadcast Comedy Departments

After a few weeks off, the ABC Renew/Cancel is back for an update centering on its bubble comedies. Keep reading for my thoughts on what just may be the most complicated of broadcast's comedy departments.

Certain Cancellation:
Emergence (0.5)

Likely Cancellation

Leans Cancellation:
Bless This Mess (0.7)
Schooled (0.7)
Single Parents (0.7)
Stumptown (0.6)

Leans Renewal
Mixed-ish (0.7)

Likely Renewal:
American Housewife (0.6)
A Million Little Things (0.8)
The Rookie (0.6)

Certain Renewal:
Black-ish (0.7)
The Conners (1.1)
The Good Doctor (0.8)
The Goldbergs (0.9)

Already Renewed:
Grey's Anatomy

Already Canceled/Final Season:
Fresh Off the Boat
How To Get Away With Murder
Modern Family

Coming Soon:
The Baker & The Beauty
For Life
Station 19
United We Fall

It's time to address the elephant in the room: aside from a few shows, every show in ABC's comedy department is basically performing the exact same as the rest of them. Five of their eight comedies with fates undetermined are averaging 0.7, and most of them are at a very early point in their runs. It's hard to make a definitive call on any of them, but I'm going to break down the positives and negatives on each of these shows below in order to better explain my reasons for each of their categorizations.

Blackish: While I don't see this show as a "bubble" comedy in any way, it is one of the five shows that are rating in the 0.7 range. It's always been a show that ABC clearly favors, even as the network has experienced changes in leadership. Its 0.67 average is nothing stellar, but it has the best retention of any x:30 ABC comedy. I don't see any way that ABC will cancel this owned comedy without any prior warning, and it remains a CERTAIN RENEWAL.

Bless This Mess: The only show that's moving this week is moving in the wrong direction, even though it hasn't been on in a month. My main reason for upgrading Bless This Mess in the first place was that it had been overperforming its ad rates. However, it's now barely overperforming and with its recent ratings being in the 0.6-0.7 range, I expect it to soon drop below its ad rate target. Considering that that was basically the only data-based thing to back up a renewal, it's on the outs. The appearance of being a network favorite isn't enough for me to keep a show with poor retention in a renewal category. It now LEANS CANCELLATION.

Mixed-ish: I downgraded this freshman comedy in my last update with little explanation, so I'll go into greater detail here. I still think that the newest Ish show will probably be back for a second season. I see it as a flop, but ABC has quite a few of those in the comedy department and they can't cancel them all. This show has a tie-in to Blackish, a show that ABC clearly loves, which should help it out at renewal time. It's performing at about the level it needs to be per its ad rates, but like Bless This Mess, it's also in danger of dropping below its target. That's not a death sentence, but that plus its recent 0.5s are what caused the downgrade to LEANS RENEWAL.

Single Parents: Of the shows that I'm predicting a cancellation for, Single Parents is the one that I'm the most unsure of. Its retention from Modern Family leaves much to be desired, and it's the ABC comedy underperforming its ad rates the most, aside from The Goldbergs and the already-canceled Fresh Off the Boat. I do have concerns that ABC won't want The Goldbergs to be its only returning Wednesday show, and I think Single Parents is probably the most likely of the three on the bubble to be back. I'm keeping it in LEANS CANCELLATION for now, but don't be surprised if it isn't there a few updates from now.

Schooled: The other Wednesday bubble comedy I've been having doubts about is The Goldbergs spinoff Schooled. It's underperforming for sure, and it isn't even fully owned by ABC, but Sony could potentially bundle it with The Goldbergs in order to secure a renewal for it, which may make its non-fully-owned status benefit it in some way. And as I said when discussing Single Parents, I'm not sure ABC's going to want to scrap so much of its Wednesday lineup, so I do think Schooled's fate will rest on how ABC plans to schedule Wednesdays. As of now, the numbers are pointing me to a LEANS CANCELLATION prediction and that's where I'll keep it.

What do you think of my predictions? What are your predictions? Let me know in the comments and don't forget to vote in the poll of the week!

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