10-2010: Chuck vs. The Ratings pt. iii – Updated

(originally from here).

Feeding the Bear

Chuck vs. The Bear

TVBTN has one of the most watched cancellation indicies in the universe, the universe ofChuck aficionados, that is. We’re a diverse group. Some of us worry not at all and some of us worry – a lot – about the ratings.

Today brought a fresh perspective. With our appreciation to Thinkling for the graph, you can see how close the ratings race is between Chuck and the competition.

Chuck (in blazing red on the graph) continued to hold fairly steady in the ratings, and both Undercovers and Chase seem far more likely to be taken by the cancellation bear than our fav. Looking far down the road at Chuck‘s chances at a 5th season, that’s good.

Yes, it is. But TVBTN also notes, correctly, I think, that these are not the only NBC shows that will disappear for next season.

ChuckParenthood and The Event are all still a ways out in front of the cancellation bear, but it’s unlikely that all three will escape him and make it to next season alive.

That’s the next tier of shows and the next level of competition. All three have a solid chance of surviving but the way these things go, you can bet Costa Gravan Pesos that (at least) one of them will not. The good news (and wow, am I an optimist for using that word, or what?) is that the ratings for Event are slipping even as Chuck and Parenthood holds steady. It’s also true that Chuck needs very little in the way of a break-out to distinguish itself from the rest of this pack. The bad news is that their ratings overall are better than Chuck‘s. Parenthoodis one of the strongest shows around when considering “live” viewings + 7 days.

Jace, writing for The Daily Beast, notes that this bodes pretty badly, not forChuck, but for NBC.

It’s in keeping with just how dire the situation is at NBC that the network last week picked up full seasons of the serialized thriller The Event (which has lost more than 5 million viewers since it launched), along with Law & Order: Los Angeles (a.k.a. LOLA), critically reviled comedy Outsourced, and Jerry Bruckheimer’s struggling procedural Chase (which has sunk to 5.2 million viewers). The jury is out on J.J. Abrams’ glossy spy show, Undercovers, the pilot of which alone cost $10 million.

Quality shows these aren’t.

It’s the dog that didn’t bark. You want to read the whole thing, but for Jace and for me, more Chuck is by no means the problem. It’s the solution for NBC. He goes so far as to say so in his article.

It’s only Thursday, but we can ask already how things stack up for next week. Alan Sepinwall tweeted on this bright morning:

Next weeks “Chuck” is very good. Show’s strongest use of a guest star in a long time.

We have a bit of a spoiler from Ausiello this week.

Question: I’m in need of some Chuck spoilers to make my day better! —Natalie
There’s a major twist at the end of next Monday’s episode, and it involves him and her.

Well, it’s a tiny bit more revealing if you click on the the links to see which “him” and “her” he’s talking about. I LIKE major twists, especially during sweeps month. It certainly sounds to my ears like we’re in for yet another strong episode in a season that’s had nothing but strong episodes.

Finally, we have yet another great chance to directly help the show get a 5th season. We can vote to put Chuck on the cover of TV Guide.

– joe

Update: And right on cue, Yvonne takes it upon herself to underscore my words! She’s so attentive to me! 😉