Ratings Progress Report: Is ABC’s ‘Speechless’ on its way to season 2 renewal?

SpeechlessWhen you look at successful comedy series out there at the moment, we’d be willing to say confidently that few hold a candle to what ABC is able to do with their lineup. They’ve established a real brand with their family-oriented lineup. While you could argue that they are all various iterations of the same show, there’s so much diversity in terms of both humor and the casts that it never feels like you’re getting the same exact voice.

The same can be said now for “Speechless,” a show that’s already got a full season and one that gives a refreshing, funny take on living with a child with special needs. Viewers responded to the show almost right away, and ABC already gave it a full season that’ll keep it around until May. So what about beyond that? This is what we want to spotlight further in the latest edition of our Ratings Progress Report series.

The case for a season 2 – The first thing to cite is a strong average by today’s standards of a 1.7 rating in the 18-49 demographic. It’s responding well with both viewers and critics, and there is zero reason to think this will change. Even more important than a strong average, though, is consistency across the board. Every episode so far lies within the range of a 1.7 and a 2.0, and that’s incredible. There are many shows out there whose averages are slanted because of strong premiere numbers.

The case against it – For now, the only argument that you can make against issuing an early renewal is simply that: It’s early. The show’s also been victim to several preemptions so far this season thanks to Presidential Debates / the World Series, and maybe that could hurt the viewership average. Maybe you also want to see how some of ABC’s midseason comedies are going to air.

Overall verdict – Pending some disaster down the road, “Speechless” will be renewed for a second season. There’s no reason to do anything otherwise unless viewers start to completely lose their minds.

What do you think: Should “Speechless” be renewed? Vote in the poll below! (Photo: ABC.)


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