When we wrote our ratings debate piece for “Nashville” earlier this week, we basically said that this show was really going to be a toss-up as for whether or not ABC would want to take a flier on a second season. From one standpoint, it is critically-acclaimed and has a loyal following. However, you have to remember at the same time here that the ratings have not been particularly spectacular, and you have to remember that many network serials tend to lose more viewership year-to-year than any other show. (Just ask “Smash.”)
Now, there may be more reason for “Nashville” fans to be shaking in their boots. According to The Futon Critic, the network has cut the first-season order for the series by an episode to 21. Typically when you see this happen so late in the spring, it’s never particularly good news. The only silver lining that we could imagine someone having? That maybe this was a move orchestrated in part by the simple fact that producers didn’t need another episode to tell their story, and it would reduce the quality of the show. (However, we think that ABC would have really pushed for 22 if they wanted it badly enough.)
At the moment, we have “Revenge,” “Scandal,” “Once Upon a Time,” “Castle,” and “Grey’s Anatomy” as hour-long dramas that are all but guaranteed to receive a renewal for the fall. You can go ahead and write “Red Widow” in as canceled, and this really leaves you with a debate of “Nashville” or “Body of Proof.” We don’t see both shows making it out of this alive; one of them could get picked up, or they could both be dropped if the network really loves their pilots.
What do you think about this news? If you want to read some more of our ratings debate articles, you can do so over at the link here.