Ah springtime. The season of renewal – for some shows, at least. There’s a reason the broadcast nets are making mountains of TV pilots: new shows will get planted into the schedule next fall, while some current titles will get pulled out by their roots come May. After a lot of digging around the industry (and a bit of soul-searching), here are our predictions about which shows will likely survive – and which will mercifully wither – before the season comes to an end. As always, a big as-yet-unknown factor is the quality of each network’s pilots (better pilots = fewer surviving bubble shows). Here’s the list with each show’s season-to-date rating among adults 18-49, a number that includes seven days of DVR playback. Let’s start with….
2 Broke Girls (4.2): Sorry haters, they’ll be back.
Blue Bloods (1.8): Stable Friday drama is a no-brainer to return.
CSI: NY (1.8): Uncertain. Gary Sinise and company could follow CSI: Miami out the door this spring.
CSI (2.9): No mystery here. Will return.
Criminal Minds (3.6): Will return to torture anti-violence crusaders for another season.
Elementary (3.1): Indubitably.
Golden Boy (1.8): Tarnished. If the ratings don’t surge soon, this one is a goner.
Hawaii 5-0 (2.7): Will surf into another season.
How I Met Your Mother (4.0): RENEWED FOR FINAL SEASON
Made in Jersey (1.1): Cancelled
Mike & Molly (3.6): Ratings have fallen lately but we can’t see CBS turning its back on hot commodity Melissa McCarthy.
NCIS (4.2): And face the wrath of 20 million viewers? Not a chance.
NCIS: LA (3.5): Yes.
Partners (2.3): Cancelled
Person of Interest (3.5): Absolutely, a very solid and still-youthful performer in a tough slot.
Rules of Engagement (3.1): CBS likes this show to patch a hole when new comedies drop out, but this season could be the last.
Survivor (3.5): CBS tends to buy Survivor in bulk and the competition is due for another double order. Will continue.
The Amazing Race (2.4): Poor EP Bertram van Munster gets his renewals one round at a time unlike Survivor – but he uses his 57 Emmys to wipe away the tears. He shouldn’t be crying next season, though.
The Big Bang Theory (6.3): Slam dunk.
The Good Wife (2.0): Not a major ratings-grabber but critics – and character actors – love it. This drama won’t go anywhere.
The Jo b (.8): CBS hasn’t said officially but this short-lived reality show is dead.
The Mentalist (2.4): Given the show’s semi-serialized Red John storyline, this could be the rare example of a CBS crime drama that gets a “final season” announced in advance.
Two and A Half Men (4.2): CBS and studio Warner Bros are talking, so we expect to see another season (as long as Ashton Kutcher doesn’t demand a 45% stake in Warner Bros. TV or something).
Undercover Boss (1.8): Not the most impressive ratings but the network still likes it. Looks okay for now.
Vegas (2.2): Very much a gamble to return. Next up is NBC…