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FOX has cancelled Rel and The Gifted. No surprises there. Both were near the bottom of FOX's ratings.
These FOX shows have been picked up:
These have been cancelled:
No news yet on these:
The Cool Kids (right on the bubble for a 1st year show, could go either way) *
Empire (ratings are fine, should be back)
Last Man Standing (ratings are fine, should be back)
Lethal Weapon (low ratings, both lead actors are gone, it's likely cancelled)
The Orville (right on the bubble, but I think it gets a third season)
The Passage (another 1st year shows with borderline ratings, could go either way) *
Proven Innocent (low-rated new show, it's a goner)
Star (ratings are fine, should be back)
* FOX is giving up Friday night to WWE Wrestling next year, so a couple of these "borderline" shows simply won't have a spot on the schedule. If FOX wants to keep them, they will probably have to hold them back until midseason. I can't see them doing that for two freshman shows with so-so-ratings. That's why I think The Passage and The Cool Kids might get cancelled while The Orville, which gets similar ratings, will survive because it's already in its 2nd season.
FOX made it official and picked up Last Man Standing today. No surprise.
I didn’t know that Fox has so many low rated shows. Lethal Weapon was good the first two seasons but it’s dragging. They brought in a female duo and they didn’t click. The two current leads aren’t very good together, although awesome apart, and they promised Wayans a limited role if he returned. He is too old to do the strenuous stunts, even with a stunt double. There was a lot of running and stretching.
Ratings really only matter when compared to other shows on the same network. At least as far as cancel/renewal is concerned. FOX's borderline rating would be around 0.8, whereas that same rating on The CW would be a #1 hit.
So there are more safe shows than it looks like there should be,
In any other year, the cancel/renewal cutoff for FOX shows would be pretty clear based on the ratings. But this time is different because FOX is eliminating 2 hours of programming by devoting Friday night to WWE Wrestling. So it looks like a couple of shows that might appear to be safe could get cancelled simply because there is no room on the schedule.
Here are the current FOX season average ratings:
Of the 16 shows, the top 8 have either already been renewed or are certain to be renewed (Empire and Star haven't been officially picked up yet). The bottom 3 with really bad ratings are already gone. Those in the middle are the "bubble" shows. Now, in any other year I would say The Cool Kids and The Passage would be safe because they are the 2 highest rated "bubble" shows. However, they are both new shows while The Orville, which is just below them in the ratings, is a second-year show that also happens to get a nice tax break to offset its cost. Notice how The Resident has already been renewed with essentially the same ratings as The Passage, which is on the bubble. That's because new shows usually need a higher rating to earn a second season. And then there's Lethal Weapon, which has both low ratings and has lost both of its lead actors. I don't think it will be back.
Note that these are only scripted shows. Reality shows are usually a lot cheaper and can be sprinkled around the schedule as needed to fill holes so their cancel/renewal strategy is a bit different. Here's a quick look at FOX reality shows:
The Masked Singer (already renewed)
Gordon Ramsay's 24 Hours to Hell and Back (good ratings, should be back)
Hell's Kitchen (already renewed)
Masterchef Jr (already renewed)
Mental Samurai (low rated new show, probably won't be back)
The Resident has many more total viewers than The Passage. It also has a very strong cast.
Total viewers are almost completely irrelevant on the broadcast networks and most cable networks, except in the sense that more of them usually means more of what's important to advertisers: The target demo (18-49 or 25-54 for most networks). The network PR folks do like to brag about "most watched" though.