Friday (May 14) has proven to be a day that will live in infamy for one-word titles at NBC.
According to all manner of media reports, NBC has cancelled “Heroes,” “Trauma” and “Mercy.” Somehow, miraculously, “Chuck” emerged from the day not only unscathed, but with a renewal for the 2010-2011 season.
Nobody honestly expected either “Trauma” or “Mercy” to be renewed.
NBC made several early-season attempts to cancel “Trauma,” but kept needing to order episodes effectively to fill space, despite never seeing any real ratings traction.
As for “Mercy,” NBC was forced to rush the nursing drama to the air in the fall when “Parenthood” was postponed and recast. Although ratings had been in a steady decline, particularly in the 18-49 demographic, NBC made an effort to move “Mercy” to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, where it drew under 4 million viewers and a 1.0 demo rating last week.
While “Mercy” and “Trauma” are unlikely to be deeply mourned, “Heroes” still has fans, albeit nearly 10 million fewer per week than watched the show in its first season.
Back then, “Heroes” was a phenomenon. In 2007, “Heroes” beat shows like “The Wire,” “Friday Night “Lights” and “When the Levees Broke” for the Television Critics’ Association’s Program of the Year. That same year, “Heroes” was also nominated for a heaping pile of Emmys, including Outstanding Drama Series and won a trio of technical Emmys.
For many fans, though, “Heroes” began to show signs of creative weakness by the first season finale and ratings plummeted with each season. After averaging nearly 14 million viewers in its first season, “Heroes” fell to under 11.5 million in its second season and to 5.2 million in this, its fourth season.
There had been talk that “Heroes” was significantly lucrative enough oversees to possibly earn at least a limited renewal. When even that began to seem unrealistic, rumors spread that NBC was contemplating a 2-hour or 4-four send-off event. As of now, according to The Hollywood Reporter, it’s unlikely that the show will receive any sort of additional send-off.