ABC Renew/Cancel Week 5: A Veteran Comedy Downgrades

Over the course of the season,  I've been pretty steady with my predictions. I haven't upgraded or downgraded anything since my initial predictions for each show, and it's time for that to change. One particular show is on the move in the downward direction. Keep reading to see what it is!

Certain Cancellation:

Likely Cancellation:

Leans Cancellation:
For Life (0.4, 0.4-0.5)

Leans Renewal:
Big Sky (0.7, 0.7-0.7)

Likely Renewal:
American Housewife (0.6, 0.6-0.6)
The Conners (0.8, 0.6-0.9)
The Good Doctor (0.6, 0.6-0.7)
A Million Little Things (0.7)

Certain Renewal:
Blackish (0.5, 0.4-0.6)
The Goldbergs (0.8, 0.6-0.8)
Grey's Anatomy (1.3, 1.3-1.3)
Station 19 (1.1, 1.0-1.2)

Coming Soon:
Call Your Mother
The Rookie
Women of the Movement 

The Conners: Going into this season, The Conners was in great shape. It was the #1 comedy of the previous season, was the top ABC comedy and their #2 scripted show overall, and was one of the last shows remaining with an average north of 1.0. However, there were signs of trouble to come, as the show was moving to a much worse slot that it spent seasons one and two in: Wednesdays at 9. The show was losing its local lead-in and was becoming a centerpiece of the Wednesday lineup, not always a good thing when the 8:30 shows can be so middling at times. American Housewife is a fine performer, but it's probably not even close to being as strong as the Conners' local lead-in. As such, the show has gotten lost in the shuffle this season after a solid 0.9 premiere, and it's gone as low as a 0.6 just in its first few episodes. I don't think The Conners will be canceled, as it's still ABC's #2 comedy, but it absolutely looks shakier than it once did. It's very expensive and not fully owned by ABC and is underperfmorming its ad rates, so it needs to perform better than many other ABC comedies in order to coast to renewal. This will likely not be its final season, but its performance thus far has probably shortened its overall run. Given its middling performance, I can't confidently leave it as a certain renewal, and I'm downgrading it to a LIKELY RENEWAL.

Big Sky: Even as its lead-in sunk a bit, Big Sky had a far stronger week two than most new shows. It managed to stay steady in rounded ratings, and even rose a bit in unrounded numbers. It's one thing for a show to hold steady as its lead-in situation improves, but Big Sky was in a worse situation (and against stronger competition!) and still rose a bit. I'm not upgrading it, because its retention still isn't great and it's still very early in the season, but it's in a better place right now that I anticipated it being in after its premiere. It holds at LEANS RENEWAL.

For Life: Also in a better position this week than last week is For Life. Unlike Big Sky, it actually managed to rise in week two in both unrounded and rounded ratings, and it rose from its Blackish lead-in in unrounded. I think this is more the byproduct of a lack of having Chicago PD to compete with than anything related to For Life, but it's still quite impressive, even with the heavy promo for it. However, I think that rise is pretty unlikely to hold. For one thing, its lead-in from here on out is about to get much less compatible, going from Blackish to The Great Christmas Light Fight to Kyra Sedgwick's Call Your Mother. Even if Blackish is rating terribly, it's still pretty compatible with For Life, which likely allows for some steadiness between the two. If the less compatible Call Your Mother bombs to 0.3s (very possible!), For Life could be headed for some ugly ratings, especially with a very strong Chicago PD airing against it. For that reason, a one-week rise to 0.5 isn't enough for me to upgrade it. I need some more data to be safe. It still LEANS CANCELLATION.

Where would you place The Conners?
Certain Renewal
Likely Renewal
Leans Renewal
Leans Cancellation
Likely Cancellation
Certain Cancellation
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