While many NBC shows remain on the renewal bubble, the network gave a quintet of drama pickups on Friday (April 26) afternoon, led by fan-favorites “Parenthood” and “Grimm.”
As expected, network also renewed the freshman hits “Revolution” and “Chicago Fire” and extended its relationship with “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” to 15 seasons.
“On the verge of our 2013 fall scheduling decisions, we”re pleased to renew five drama series that will be important to our new season line-up,” blurbs NBC Entertainment President Jennifer Salke said. “We”re proud and very appreciative of all of the actors, producers, writers and directors who work so hard to deliver such high-quality work week in and week out. These complex shows represent a broad range of genres and tones, and all of them stand out for us in a television landscape now filled with one-hour series. We”re especially pleased to be renewing ‘Revolution’ and ‘Chicago Fire’ — two first-season successes — and there will be more returning series announcements made in the next couple of weeks.”
That suggests that fans may not have to wait all the way til Upfronts Week to learn the fate of some of NBC’s bubble comedies, perhaps?
All five dramas shows have been given 22 episode renewals.
For four of those shows, that 22-episode order isn’t necessarily significant, but “Parenthood” has only had one 22 episode season out of its four. Launched as a 13-episode midseason drama in 2010, “Parenthood” aired only 15 episodes this season, ending in January, and only 18 episodes last year, wrapping in February. The Jason Katims-run series grew by 8 percent in its fourth season, averaging 7.1 million total viewers and a 2.8 rating among adults 18-49.
Also showing encouraging growth for NBC has been “Chicago Fire,” which premiered with 6.6 million viewers, but has topped that total eight times, an unlikely figure in this landscape. A nested pilot for a potential police-centric spinoff will air at the end of the “Chicago Fire” season, potentially giving NBC more programming options for next year.
“Grimm” is also hoping to give NBC a little more programming flexibility by shining in an upcoming Tuesday night run. Airing on Fridays, “Grimm” is up by 14 percent over last season in the 18-49 demo and by 12 percent overall.
As for “Revolution,” NBC boasts that it’s the season’s top-rated new season in the 18-49 demographic and that it has combined with “The Voice” to boost the network’s Monday average by 24 percent. “Revolution” numbers has been in a decline since the show returned in March and it remains to be seen if NBC will give it a different time period in the fall.