With May just around the corner, a lot of producers will soon learn the fates of their television series ahead of the network upfront presentations. For many, the future remains uncertain, but thanks to Entertainment Weekly, we may have a better idea of what to expect for lower-rated comics-based shows, like Fox's "Gotham," NBC's "Powerless," The CW's "iZombie" and ABC's "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
"Gotham" and "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." initially earned impressive ratings. However, over multiple seasons, both dramas have been unable to retain their original audiences. "S.H.I.E.L.D." debuted in 2013 to an astonishing 11.9 million viewers and a 4.6 rating among adults 18-49, while "Gotham" premiered the following year to 8.2 million live viewers and a 3.2 rating among adults 18-49 back in 2014. Interestingly enough, while "S.H.I.E.L.D." quickly lost most of its core viewership early on, "Gotham" managed to maintain a decent-size audience for a couple of seasons before becoming a "bubble" show.
Since then, "S.H.I.E.L.D." has been lucky to retain 2 million live viewers weekly, while "Gotham" has fallen below 4 million. Although such low ratings on a major network would typically mark a show for cancellation, "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." has constantly performed well with Live + 7 ratings, often adding an additional 1 million viewers in delayed viewing. That, and the fact that it's a Marvel property, have led to the series' continuation. This year, however, its status hasn't been so certain. While the show has been at its best creatively, it's struggled in its new 10 p.m. time slot, leading many to believe this season could be the last. Of course, "S.H.I.E.L.D." co-showrunner Jed Whedon recently stated they have no intentions of stopping, leaving fans to hang onto some hope. Entertainment Weekly suggests renewal chances are decent, with the Marvel drama expected to earn at least one more season.
The same goes for "Gotham." While the ratings are low for a Fox series, the network has been struggling overall this season, leading EW to believe a Season Four renewal is all but certain. Likewise, "iZombie" is probably looking at a fourth season on The CW. Although the horror comedy-drama, loosely based on the DC Entertainment/Vertigo comic of the same name, doesn't exactly burn up the Nielsen charts, EW asserts it "has proven itself to be a stable midseason replacement."
Unfortunately, the same can't be said for "Powerless," the freshman NBC sitcom set within the DC Universe. The comedy premiered in February to not-so-super ratings, and has seen on a steady decline with each episode. EW highly doubts this series will live on to see a second season.
Official news about "Gotham," "iZombie," "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." and "Powerless" should be announced next month during the network upfront presentations.