Tonight, the bad news for “The Night Shift” is rather clear: Due to the Olympics airing on NBC, you’re not getting a new installment. The series is off the air for the next two weeks, but come August 24 it will return with the beginning of a two-part finale event. We’ll have a little more news on that later today.
For now, we want to focus for a minute on the show’s future beyond the next month, and that is tied to the season 4 renewal odds. At present, NBC has not announced a decision one way or another, but we’re feeling at least somewhat hopeful. The fan support is there, but with any other decision there are several moving parts that need to be worked out. Let’s take a look at this from all sides.
Reasons to be hopeful – For one, the ratings are remarkably consistent over the course of the season. It has remained between a 0.8 and a 1.2 rating in the 18-49 demographic over the course of the entire summer so far, and it actually had its season-high in July. It’s also managed to do this during what has been an incredibly tough summer for scripted network shows. Just look at “Wayward Pines,” “Mistresses,” or “Zoo” for examples of returning series who has shown some worse for wear against the likes of election coverage, Olympics, and other sporting events. This is without even mentioning shows like “American Gothic” and “BrainDead,” which started low and never really improved.
Causes for concern – Like those aforementioned shows, ratings for “The Night Shift” have also fallen a good 25% in the demo year-to-year. That’s a pretty sizable drop, but you also have to remember that season 2 aired during the regular season more than a year ago so it’s a little bit of a different situation than with many of the other shows. One other thing to consider is that “The Night Shift” is a show from Sony Pictures TV, so NBC doesn’t have ownership under the same umbrella. That can adversely impact a show, but at least NBC does have a good relationship with the studio thanks to other shows like “The Blacklist.”
Ultimately, we do foresee “The Night Shift” coming back. It’s one of the top-rated scripted shows on network TV for the summer, and what it’s shown this year yet again is that it can go away for a long stretch of time, alternate lead-ins, and even air a different times, and people will still continue to watch.
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