At the moment, the future for Fox’s longest-running scripted show may not be all that bright. “Bones” has a legion of devoted fans, popular actors in Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz, and also is syndicated more or less all around the world. Unfortunately, it is also a fairly expensive show to make thanks to how long it has been on the air, and the ratings aren’t great.
Just this past week at the TCA Winter Press Tour, Fox executives were not too bullish on the show’s prospects. That is a cause for concern, but it doesn’t mean that the show dead and buried, either. With this in mind, we’ve got quite a bit to discuss here in the latest chapter of our Ratings Bubble Report.
The good news – This show continues to to be the perfect schedule-filler for Fox. You can air it on any night of the week at virtually any time, and people will watch. It’s almost the scripted version of a Gordon Ramsay show in that regard. It also is airing on a network that does not have that many huge hits right now. “Minority Report” was a flop, “Sleepy Hollow” is headless as far as ratings go, their comedies are not performing that well, and “Gotham” and “Empire” are really their only two stable dramas. Sure, “Rosewood” does okay, but is that because its proximity to “Empire”? They may need “Bones” for a while longer to shore up the schedule.
The bad news – Let’s not pretend that the ratings are good … they’re just decent compared to other Fox shows. Season 11 is down almost 8% from season 10, which was in turn down over 30% from season 9. In turn, season 9 was down more than 15% from season 8. Catch our drift? This is not a show on the rise, and it is expensive with Deschanel and Boreanaz on board. We’re not considering the recent lawsuit much of a factor here; instead, the reality is just that the show has to end eventually, and if Fox fares okay with some of their midseason shows, they may be okay with letting this go.
Renewals odds – Moderately low. Fox’s TCA comments don’t give us a whole lot of hope, but there’s still a chance. This is certainly a show that has defied the odds before.
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