Tuesday, June 7, 2016

A18-49+ Update: The New Shows in 2015-16

Here's a look at the new scripted series on the big four in 2015-16:




Hits: Life in Pieces (137), Blindspot (125)
Solids: Chicago Med (117), Supergirl (115), Superstore (102), Lucifer (101)
Sub-solid renewals: Rosewood (92), Code Black (86), Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders (86), Quantico (85), Shades of Blue (80), Dr. Ken (76), The Real O'Neals (76), Scream Queens (76), The Catch (67)

After two strong classes of new series in the last two years, the class of 2015-16 fell back to earth, as most of the percentages above fell a bit worse than the historical averages. Even these tepid numbers probably look better on the surface than they actually will be over the long-term; the only two "hits" were Life in Pieces and Blindspot, and they both seem very unlikely to ever qualify as hits again since they will be getting much worse situations next year. Plenty of the other renewals were pretty front-loaded (Scream Queens, Quantico, Lucifer) and/or will be getting timeslot downgrades (Chicago Med, Supergirl, Rosewood) next season.

Despite lukewarm at best numbers overall, there was still another high volume of renewals. This mostly wasn't about massive reaches, as The Catch was the only renewal in flop territory. It was more about a high renewal rate in the upper categories. Nothing above league average was axed, and 8 of the 12 "marginal" series got a season two nod; only Heroes Reborn, Limitless, The Muppets and Angel from Hell were denied.

Career A18-49+ Update:

Another way of assessing new show classes is to grade them based on how they pan out in Career A18-49+. Here's the update to that pursuit with 2015-16 numbers. The changes based on 2015-16 numbers are included in parentheses.

2003-043343222 (+1)
2004-053410875 (+1)1
2005-06408333 (+1)0
2008-0925432 (+1)00
2009-102695 (+1)3 (+1)10
2010-113442 (+1)1 (+1)00
2011-12408 (+1)4 (+1)1 (+1)00
2012-13283 (+2)0000
2013-14394 (+4)0000
2014-15382 (+1)1 (+1)000

2001-02: Since there's no Kiefer, I probably won't be counting 24: Legacy toward the 24 career total. So this class is extinct.

2002-03: Still extinct.

2003-04: NCIS became an icon, meaning two of the four icons produced in the last 15 years have come from this class. NCIS keeps rolling, but the career labeling is resolved now for this class.

2004-05: American Dad! eked out the star label in its second cable season and keeps chugging on TBS. So this labeling is technically not resolved. Dad! may have to run for literally over a decade more to make it to icon, but it's already renewed for at least two more years...

2005-06: Bones became the third star of the 2005-06 class. With an announced final season in 2016-17, it will not become an icon, so the last hope now rests with Criminal Minds. It could actually get there next season but it'd have to be up a few percent in Plus (had a 123 this year, needs 130 next year). I actually may count the Prison Break revival toward its career total since the core cast is returning, but it needs 137 points for staple.

2006-07: I decided not to count Heroes Reborn within the Heroes run, but it doesn't matter for labeling purposes because it didn't get nearly enough to make it a tentpole. Still extinct.

2007-08: Labeling is resolved, but The Big Bang Theory is still going. Next year, it will pass Two and a Half Men and The Simpsons to become the #1 comedy in Career A18-49+ within the era. (Though The Simpsons would surely still be way ahead if all its pre-2001 totals were known.)

2008-09: Castle's cancellation means 2008-09 is extinct. It made it to tentpole in its final season, and passed The Mentalist to post the highest Career A18-49+ of the class.

2009-10: The Good Wife became the fifth and final staple in its last season, while The Middle became the third and final tentpole. Now we watch Modern Family's race for icon (225 points away) and NCIS: Los Angeles and The Middle going for star. (They are 160 and 250 points away, respectively.) Seems very unlikely that any of those three will happen in 2016-17.

2010-11: Hawaii Five-0 finally gave this class a second staple, and it'll be joined by Bob's Burgers and Blue Bloods next season. Mike and Molly became the first tentpole, but its cancellation means it will be a long slog for anybody in this class to get higher than that.

2011-12: Grimm became the eighth and final utility player of this class, while Person of Interest upgraded to staple #4 in its final season and 2 Broke Girls gave this class its first tentpole. Scandal will become the second tentpole next season, and Once Upon a Time will become #3 if it can somehow break even in Plus. New Girl will become staple #5 next year, while Last Man Standing probably needs two years unless it can be up in raw numbers or something.

2012-13: Nashville eked out the utility label in its fourth and final season, and Elementary got there as well. There is still danger of this becoming the era's first class without multiple staples, as exiled Elementary will probably need at least three more years to get there. (Just how cushy is that WGN America deal, anyway?) But Chicago Fire will ensure at least a single staple when it gets there next year.

2013-14: The Blacklist, Mom, The Goldbergs and Agents of SHIELD all became utility, with Chicago PD, Sleepy Hollow and Brooklyn Nine-Nine all headed that way next year. The Goldbergs needs to break even in Plus to make it to staple next year, while Blacklist and Mom would have to be significantly up in Plus.

2014-15: Empire is a staple in two years and will become a tentpole in three next year! How to Get Away with Murder became utility #2 in just its second season, and it could be joined by as many as six more shows next year. Scorpion, Black-ish and NCIS: NO should be locks, The Odd Couple and Gotham seem likely, and Fresh Off the Boat would need a third-year bounce to 107 in its move to 9/8c. The class could conceivably tie the era's utility record of 10 with The Last Man on Earth and Madam Secretary each two or three years away.

2015-16: With the only two hits getting big timeslot downgrades, it's gonna be awhile on any labeling out of this crew...

Here's the now updated A18-49+ New Shows post.

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