Body of Proof: Should ABC Have Cancelled the Show?

Body of Proof canceled season threeABC has been searching for new hit dramas to replace their older ones for some time. Lost went off the air in 2010, Brothers & Sisters was cancelled last May, and Desperate Housewives is ending next spring. Last season, Body of Proof was the only new drama that held any promise and ABC renewed it. In retrospect, was that a mistake?

Body of Proof stars Dana Delany as Doctor Megan Hunt, a former neurosurgeon who became a medical examiner after a serious car accident. Megan can be difficult to work with but won’t give up until she gets answers and expects the best from herself and her co-workers. Others in the cast include Jeri Ryan, Nicholas Bishop, Geoffrey Arend, Windell D. Middlebrooks, John Carroll Lynch, and Sonja Sohn.

The show debuted in late March 2011 to a 3.1 rating in the 18-49 demographic and 13.94 million viewers. In light of the failures of ABC’s other new dramas, this one looked very promising. The rating numbers fell off pretty quickly for subsequent episodes but the first season still ended up averaging a 2.3 rating in the demo and 11.13 million viewers. Performance-wise, Body of Proof was in the middle of the pack as the eighth most-watch show of ABC’s season (out of 18 scripted series).

Will Body of Proof get a third season?

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Last season ended with a disappointing 2.1 demo rating and this season didn’t start off much better, registering a 2.2 with 9.4 million viewers. The numbers have gotten even worse and the show has hit a series low of a 1.8 in the demo on three occasions. The seven episodes that have aired so far this season have averaged a 1.9 in the demo and 9.45 million, a decline of 17% in the demo when compared to last year’s average.

The show is currently the lowest-rated scripted series on the network. Though total viewership is fairly positive, unless the demo ratings get better, it’s hard to imagine that we’ll see ABC ordering any more episodes or a third season.

On the positive side, ABC only aired nine of the 13 installments that were produced for season one. Since the show started so late in the season, execs chose to hold the remaining four until season two. Combined with a typical second season order for 13 installments, they have 17 episodes for the 2011-12 season. Given the current numbers, that’s likely as close as Body of Proof is going to get to a full season order.

But, what do you think? Is Body of Proof still worth watching? Should ABC stick with it or just cancel it already?

Canceled and renewed TV show

106 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Elaine K. says

    I realize this it is late to be making my comments heard, but I agree with all the others that this show should not have been cancelled. It is so entertaining and any show with Dana DeLany in it is worth watching. It would be nice if another network picked up this show since ABC does not see the true value in keeping its tv viewers happy.

  2. Candis says

    Oh my stars! Don’t cancel this great show! I really wonder about the numbers counted because everyone I know loves BofP and the characters. Leave it to the times that a great, clean, fun show is under the gun. Pull the trigger elsewhere and leave Body of Proof alone please!

  3. Roe says

    While my husband and I loved this show, I thought Dana Delany’s role became increasingly OBNOXIOUS. Women don’t have to be blatantly rude, dismissive, diva-like, overbearing, snide, and ignorant, in order to project strength.

    I actually wanted to stop watching the show as the writer’s for her part were getting too over the top insofar as making her a horrific person. At times when she was ranting or being a total creep I had to take my headset off and look away from the screen. My husband was even getting tired of her portrayal. It was getting ridiculous.

    If they tone her part down a bit, it would be good to keep the show on. The other actors are great and the stories are interesting. But to see the part of Dana act as though she had TERMINAL PMS x 1000, week after week, started to be too much. Give us a break.

    Good show, bad writer’s for that one part. Also, give the other actors their chances at holding a show. Make it more about them, too.

  4. Nancy says

    I love this show! You really should reconsider. It was getting so interesting now with Megan trying to figure out what happen to her Dad! and NOW you end it??!?!?

  5. Bonnie says

    Well let’s see.. I watched Harry’s Law and it is cancelled. I watched Body of Proof and it’s not looking to healthy either. If they take away Bones as well I might as well sell my flat screen.

  6. Jamie says

    One of my favorite shows along w/ Unforgettable,Prime Suspect,Combat Hospital,The Finder,Awake,Touch,Falling Skies,Rookie Blue, and Wipeout. When the season ended I felt like a child on Christmas morning after all my presents had been opened knowing that I had to wait another whole year before Santa came again. It would be tragic if it got cancelled.

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