Ratings debate: Will ‘Private Practice’ continue after timeslot shift?

Will the show stick around?

When you talk about anything related to “Grey’s Anatomy,” it’s pretty rare that you ever imagine looking at it with the possibility that it may end up being canceled at some point. However, this is exactly what we are having to do with “Private Practice” at this very moment.

With this ratings debate, we’re going to look and see if moving to this song to a new timeslot really ended up hurting the show more than helping it (even if that show is “Dancing with the Stars” and its high viewership).

Why it should go – Five seasons in, this “Practice” is starting to lose some steam at least when it comes to the headlines. Networks want shows that can create some buzz among viewers, and it seems that the only time the series gets into the news now is whenever it crosses over with “Grey’s.” When it first premiered, Shonda Rhimes had so many people talking — where has it gone?

From a ratings standpoint, you also have to consider that a 2.1 rating in the 18-49 demographic is lower than most of the network’s other long-running series (save for the ones airing on Friday nights). It also is not even pulling the same total viewership that “Body of Proof” was getting in the spot, even if these numbers do not matter as much.

Why it should stay – Despite moving to a new timeslot that is not directly after “Grey’s,” “Private Practice” has admirably kept a good bit of its viewership intact. As a matter of fact, “Dancing” has even allowed it to gain some total viewers.

While this may not be a series that gets many headlines anymore, you can’t discount a show that is successful at continually bringing in viewers and delivering some high-quality episode. Plus, the crossover potential with Shonda Rhimes’ original show does still create some great episodes.

What will happen – While there have been some concerns here and there, we have to say that this “Practice” will probably stay open for at least a little while longer. With ABC having so many other shows with lower 18-49 ratings (“GCB,” “Proof,” “Last Man Standing,” “Cougar Town,” “Scandal”), it seems like a mistake to send a show with this sort of dedicated fan base canceled.

While we would not necessarily be stunned if next season is announced as the last for the show (mostly because it’s better to end on a high note), we would be absolutely stunned if Kate Walsh in company are sent into retirement before we get at least another handful of episodes.

Photo: ABC

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