TV Lifespans: Beyond The Blacklist season 5, how long does James Spader series last?

The Blacklist logo any seasonThe Blacklist season 5 is still going strong on NBC, and if you were to ask many of the producers on the show one thing would be clear: There’s certainly a demand for a season 6. Beyond that, though, there are obviously questions about the future. There is no confirmed sixth season just yet, and while CarterMatt doesn’t want that to be the end we have to wonder if that could be the final season.

As much as we may hate to say it, we do have to face reality: The Blacklist is a show that is probably past the halfway point of its run. The ratings for the show are weaker than many of the other Monday-Thursday programs that are on the air. It does have an international following and many DVR viewers, but you can say the same thing about Chicago Fire and Law & Order: SVU. The biggest asset that The Blacklist has is a really good deal with Netflix that we are sure brings in substantial cash. Streaming deals are effectively replacing syndication for many shows as one of their largest sources of extra income. This is a show that will need that given that following season 6 or 7, it could be time to renegotiate with most of the cast for additional episodes.

If we were the producers of The Blacklist, here’s what we would do — sit down over the summer after the likely renewal and start to figure out what the future should look like. If season 6 is meant to be the final one, go through and plot out the endgame. Don’t wait to make the announcement so that you can build publicity around the final season. If it’s not the final season, start to figure out when that could be. If The Blacklist makes it past season 8, we’d be surprised (and thrilled!). With its ratings trajectory at the moment it has some challenges.

The biggest mystery that the NBC needs to deal with right now is the one of Red and Liz — getting all of the secrets out on the table. For us, the bones in the suitcase storyline needs to be resolved by the end of season 5. Don’t wait until the series finale to resolve these things since a big part of establishing the twist is to offer up a chance to really explore the other side of them. Offer us a chance to see how Liz reacts to what she learns and if Reddington (if this person is really Reddington) can move forward after the news is out.

We should know about The Blacklist’s future by May at the latest. Beyond that, we’ll just have to pay close attention to the news that starts to trickle in.

What do you think: Is The Blacklist season 5 the end of the road, and should it be? Share some of your thoughts in the comments!

(Photo: NBC.)

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