The end of the workweek was a night of new beginnings and a final farewell on primetime last night. The beginning was the return of Unforgettable (1.0/4) for the last six episodes of its second season on CBS. The Sony TV-produced procedural starring Poppy Montgomery and Dylan Walsh is in some ways, the show that will never die – having cancelled once and then brought back to life again in summer 2012 with a new pick up. Last night, however, Unforgettable took a hit in its latest return. Already renewed for a third season set to start in June, the show fell 23% last night from its Sunday July 28 Season 2 debut of last year. While even with its last show on September 8 last year, last night’s Unforgettable actually saw a small 4% total viewership rise from its Season 2 debut to an audience of 7.50 million. Back with their first originals since March 14, Hawaii Five-0 (1.3/5) and Blue Bloods (1.5/5) were down and up 7% respectively, with the latter the most watched show of the night with 11.40 million viewers.
EXCLUSIVE: It’s the end of the road for Fox‘s quirky family comedy Raising Hope, with the upcoming fourth-season finale serving as series finale. The blue-collar sitcom will bow out with an hourlong farewell on Friday, April 4, featuring back-to-back episodes from 9-10 PM.
Created by Greg Garcia, Raising Hope was the first comedy series in a while to stick at Fox. It proved a good utility player, doing well behind New Girl but also as a 8 PM anchor of the Tuesday comedy block last season. “Getting to know and love the Chance family on Raising Hope has been a sweet, hilarious ride,” said Fox chairman Kevin Reilly and COO Joe Earley. “Thanks to the incredibly talented cast — along with Greg, Mike and the entire crew — for making us laugh for four fantastic seasons.”
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Raising Hope had the odds stacked against it going into Season 4. Creator Greg Garcia left the series as part of his move from 20th TV, which produces Raising Hope, to CBS TV Studios. He was succeeded on showrunner duties by Mike Mariano. Then the show was sent to Fridays where it has languished, most recently pulling in a 0.5 18-49 rating this past Friday.
EXCLUSIVE: Today’s fourth season renewal for Fox’s comedy Raising Hope came after a succession plan for the family comedy had been put in place. Raising Hope creator/executive producer/showrunner Greg Garcia is leaving at the end of the season as stipulated by his overall deal at CBS TV Studios. One of his top lieutenants, Raising Hope executive producer Mike Mariano, has closed a deal to take over showrunner duties for Season 4. I hear the multi-year pact includes a development component. In addition to Raising Hope, where he has been since after the pilot, first as co-exec producer and then as exec producer, CAA-repped Mariano worked as a writer-producer on Garcia’s previous series, NBC’s My Name Is Earl. Meanwhile, Garcia is almost certain to get a new series on the air next season with two high-profile pilots at CBS.
On the heels of freshman The Mindy Project getting a pickup for two more episodes, bringing its first season order to 24 episodes, Fox has done the same with its two returning live-action comedies: …
It may be the DVR effect, impact of cable or the Internet, but it is kind of depressing seeing a whopping seven programs on the Big 4 broadcast networks post a 1 rating among adults 18-49 on Night 10 of the new season when viewer excitement is supposed to be still high.
Fox’s all-comedy Tuesday block continues to struggle. The addition of Raising Hope as 8 PM anchor didn’t help as the comedy opened its third season with a 1.7/5 among adults 18-49. That was down 45% from the series’ second season premiere behind New Girl last fall. It was also down 19% from Raising Hope‘s debut in the Tuesday 8 PM slot last spring when Fox tried out a two-hour comedy block. New Fox comedies, Ben And Kate (1.6/5) and The Mindy Project (1.9/5) both crumbled in Week 2, down 24% and 21%, respectively, from their modest premieres. The big dropoff for critical darling The Mindy Project is especially concerning as the show followed New Girl. In one of the brighter spots on last night’s ratings report, New Girl (2.8/7) matched its season premiere rating from last week, avoiding the proverbial “second-week slump.” Ben And Kate‘s dropoff mirrored that of its lead-in (down 25% from last week when Fox aired a new New Girl at 8 PM.)
Twitter has become a huge part of TV networks’ strategy to get the word out on its shows, so it’s no surprise Fox and CBS are turning to the social networking site as part of its fall promo campaign. A survey by Bluefin Labs recently reported in the Wall Street Journal found that comments posted on Twitter and other social-media websites about television shows have exploded in the past year, to 75.5 million in July from 8.8 million a year earlier.
Following that trend, Fox announced today that fans can get a sneak preview of the Season 3 premiere of Raising Hope on the comedy’s Twitter page in advance of its on-air debut October 2 – the first time a full episode of a TV series has been available on the social networking site. It’s available now through next Thursday at 11:59 PM. And CBS follows next week, kicking off its #CBSTweetWeek @ the CBS Connect Lounge. The network says fans will have direct access to their favorite CBS Television Network stars with a week full of social media events September 24-28.