NBC Renew/Cancel Week 20: American Auto’s Engine is Stalling

This week on the NBC Renew/Cancel, some scheduling news may indicate the end of the line for one of NBC's comedies, to the benefit of another. Keep reading to see which show is due for a prediction upgrade this week.

Certain Cancellation:
Grand Crew (0.16, 0.14-0.18)

Likely Cancellation:
Young Rock (0.25, 0.22-0.31)

Leans Cancellation:
American Auto (0.28, 0.23-0.38)

Leans Renewal:

Likely Renewal:
Law & Order (0.48, 0.37-0.60)
Lopez vs Lopez (0.28, 0.20-0.33)
Magnum PI (0.28, 0.22-0.36)

Certain Renewal:
Chicago Fire (0.64, 0.53-0.77)
Chicago Med (0.60, 0.46-0.70)
Chicago PD (0.58, 0.44-0.68)
Law & Order: Organized Crime (0.47, 0.37-0.62)
Law & Order: SVU (0.58, 0.48-0.69)
Saturday Night Live (0.77, 0.66-0.98)

Already Canceled/Final Season:
The Blacklist
New Amsterdam

Already Renewed:
La Brea
Night Court
Quantum Leap 

American Auto: About a month ago, I upgraded American Auto from a likely cancellation all the way to leans renewal, as its ratings were perking up at that time and the show was looking relatively decent, compared to the Friday comedies, especially as its Night Court lead-in was weakening. In the weeks since that change, I've gone back and forth on what the show's fate will ultimately be, as its ratings have declined to 0.2s. However, the low ratings aren't even the principle reason for this week's prediction upgrade - I was willing to give it the benefit of the doubt there, since the other NBC comedies still remained even weaker. No, rather, it's the news that American Auto will air its second season finale behind a repeat of Night Court, and not an original - much like Young Rock back in February. This seems to be a decision NBC made in order to save up Night Court originals to air with Lopez vs. Lopez, which will move to Tuesdays at 8:30 for the final three episodes of its season. NBC seems to be washing their hands of American Auto and attempting to salvage a low-rated freshman that they are interested in turning into a more long-term player. With a new comedy already ordered, and two pilots in contention (including one from American Auto creator Justin Spitzer), NBC doesn't need American Auto in order to fill up their comedy quota for next season. Its prospects are looking dim, though it's not entirely hopeless yet. It LEANS CANCELLATION, though it remains the most likely comedy to be shown mercy if NBC wants three returning comedies next season rather than two.

Lopez vs Lopez: As mentioned above, NBC is moving Lopez vs Lopez to Tuesdays later this month, where it will end its season after having spent much of the season on Fridays. Even though ratings have been weak this season, particularly in the past month, NBC still seems dedicated to the show, as evidenced by this attempt to give it the best comedy lead-in they can offer it. Considering how American Auto has done, and how much Night Court has dropped over the course of the season, it's very possible that Lopez doesn't see much of a gain at all, but the fact that they're trying to boost it is surely a good sign of its chances at a second season. A cancellation for the show would be at odds with the recent NBC tradition of giving their comedies at least two seasons, and their treatment of it certainly doesn't indicate that they're breaking that tradition. Ratings be damned, it remains a LIKELY RENEWAL.

What do you think of this news? What are your predictions? Let me know in the comments and vote in the poll of the week!

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