Ratings Bubble Report: Is NBC’s ‘Heartbeat’ set to flatline?

Heartbeat -

When you look back at this time last year, we imagine that NBC had some hopes for “Heartbeat” to be a huge player on the schedule. However, ever since that time a few different things have changed. For one, star Melissa George’s pregnancy pushed the show back from the fall to midseason, where it arguably had a much harder challenge standing out in the midst of an incredibly crowded field. Meanwhile, “Chicago Med” and “Code Black” both had a chance to take a big piece of the pie when it comes to the medical-show genre.

With all of this in mind, this show has fallen very much on the bubble in the weeks following its premiere, and we now have to wonder if it has any life in it at all beyond this season. That’s something we’re going to get into further now in the latest entry in our Ratings Bubble Report series.

The case for keeping it – This is a show that you could argue really hasn’t gotten too much of a fair stake given where it was in the schedule. Sometimes, shows do need a little bit of time in order to find the right audience, and with NBC not necessarily hitting it out of their park with their new shows beyond “Chicago Med” and “Blindspot” this year, you can argue that “Heartbeat” deserves another chance on the air.

The case for canceling it – It’s as simple as looking at the ratings in this case. While NBC may have a show in “Grimm” that they keep on the air despite it averaging less than a 1.0 rating in the 18-49 demographic, there’s a difference between the two in that this is a first-year show that is not airing on Fridays. While it has improved the past couple of weeks slightly, the reality here is that there’s no real incentive performance-wise for the network to keep this around, especially when “The Mysteries of Laura” performed better in the fall and midseason. It’s not looking good for this series at present.

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