CBS Renew Cancel 2022-23 #1: Pre-Season Predictions and Analysis for NCIS, So Help Me Todd, More

Welcome to the first edition of CBS Renew/Cancel 2022-23! Here you will find a table of pre-season predictions for every scripted show that has made it onto CBS’s fall 2022 schedule. This table has a redesign from previous years:

-Each show that is either renewed or predicted to be renewed will be highlighted in a different shade of green, depending on which category it is in. 

-Each show that is either canceled or predicted to be canceled will be highlighted in a different shade of red, depending of which category it is in. 

-Shows are organized by how the confidence level in the prediction. For example, if a show is at the top of the Likely Renew category, it is considered closer to the Certain Renew category than any other show in that category. 

-The Toss-Up category has been replaced with Tilts Renew and Tilts Cancel. No show will be listed as a toss-up, but shows in either Tilts category can be considered as shows that otherwise would have been in the Toss-Up category in previous years. Note that no show is starting out in the Tilts Renew category. 

Now that the table format change has been explained, here is the table itself along with the predictions: 

NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, and NCIS: Hawai’i
NCIS moved to Mondays last season and took a steep drop, something out of character for the show. It is also entering its 20th season, which by default makes it more expensive than the average broadcast TV drama. Despite the drop in ratings, it successfully launched a new NCIS spinoff, NCIS: Hawai’i. If CBS decides Hawai’i can stand on its own, they may be more confident in retiring the mother show. Unless NCIS takes another steep drop it will still be at numbers that are renewable at surface levels, but its age has to be taken under consideration here. 

As for NCIS: Los Angeles, it has become the forgotten stepchild of the franchise. Shipped away to the Sunday at 10 pm death slot, its days are likely numbered. Given how it has a syndication deal, they can probably keep it around so long as they feel they have bigger problems to fix on weekdays. However, it’s the most vulnerable of the NCIS shows and we already saw how they canceled NCIS: New Orleans, which was performing arguably just fine in the same time slot. It starts out as Leans Renew, and also the most vulnerable show that starts out in the Renew section. 

The Neighborhood, Bob Hearts Abishola, and Ghosts
Most people expected B Positive and United States of Al to join these three shows on CBS’s 2022-23 schedule (we correctly predicted B Positive’s cancelation but incorrectly predicted United States of Al). Virtually everyone expected CBS to order at least one new comedy to series, as is tradition. Instead, they are left with just four comedies, all of which have made the fall schedule and all of which are, as of now, either renewed or predicted to be renewed. The Neighborhood is ranked as the safest of those not yet renewed, as it is arguably the strongest and leads off Monday nights well. Unless Bob Hearts Abishola or Ghosts collapse in the 2022-23 season, it’s tough to see either of them getting canceled either, with CBS better off expanding comedy again. Still, if they refuse to expand, Bob Hearts Abishola is likely the most vulnerable show. 

East New York, So Help Me Todd, and Fire Country
The best way to gauge a network’s confidence in one of their new series is to see where they place it on their schedule. In the case of CBS, new drama East New York has the prime opportunity to air on Sundays nights in the fall, where it will almost certainly receive a ratings boost many weeks from the late afternoon NFL game. Even without the NFL in the picture, The Equalizer is a strong lead-in that proves CBS has confidence in East New York. It starts out as a Likely Renew, though look for it to be downgraded if it underperforms out of the gate. 

Fire Country is very clearly CBS’s attempt to have their own Chicago Fire. After all, the show was named Cal Fire when it was in the development stages. We’ve already seen ABC replicate the success with Station 19, and FOX replicate the success with 9-1-1, and now CBS is looking for the same type of show. The difference is Station 19 was made as a spinoff of Grey’s Anatomy and supercreator Ryan Murphy is behind 9-1-1, whereas Fire Country is neither of those and is going to air on Friday nights behind S.W.A.T. Maybe CBS sees this as the type of show that can potentially stay on Fridays for a while pulling in passable ratings, but it has a lot to prove. 

CBS also is premiering So Help Me Todd on their fall schedule, which will air Thursdays at 9 in lieu of a comedy hour. Given CBS canceled B Positive and United States of Al in favor of premiering So Help Me Todd, there doesn’t seem to be much of a backup plan in the event it flops. As amusing as the name of the show is, it also tends to come across as one that would get pulled from the schedule after a few episodes back in the era where that happened every fall. However, even if it underperforms, it’s become much more commonplace for shows to air out their original orders. It starts out as Tilts Cancel, but can easily make its way to a Renew category if the ratings prove to be strong. 

CSI: Vegas
CSI: Vegas didn’t perform particularly well in Live + Same Day ratings in its first season, and this season will be airing after So Help Me Todd on Thursdays instead of Tough As Nails on Wednesdays. The likely more compatible lead-in should help it out should Todd not completely flop, as should the brand name. CBS is likely trying to get CSI: Vegas to syndication the way they did all other CSI shows not named Cyber. It starts as Leans Renew.

Blue Bloods
Blue Bloods has been in syndication for years and has become a mainstay on Friday nights, finishing off CBS’s Friday lineup since 2010. Chances are its final season will be either the one where star Tom Selleck walks away from CBS, or CBS walks away from him and his paycheck. From a ratings perspective, Blue Bloods is the 2nd-lowest-rated scripted series that CBS is bringing back for its 2022-23 schedule, the lowest being CSI: Vegas. It starts out as Leans Renew due to its age and the fact that it doesn’t appear to be a network priority, much like NCIS: LA. 

S.W.A.T. lands at the bottom of the table, as the only show on the 2022-23 schedule that starts out in the Leans Cancel category. CBS never seemed to figure out just how they want to use S.W.A.T. on the schedule, leading to it being bounced around on Thursdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Sundays, and now back to Fridays. Paramount only has distribution rights for S.W.A.T. domestically, which is a potential hurdle to another renewal if CBS ends up deciding between renewing it and shows in heavy syndication rotation. With all the instability in its scheduling combined with middling ratings, it wouldn’t be entirely surprising if S.W.A.T. is cut loose at the end of the season. 

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