Ugly Betty: Will a New Timeslot Save the Show from Being Cancelled?

Ugly BettyAfter spending several weeks stranded with a “Friday night death slot,” ABC has decided to give former hit show Ugly Betty a better time slot. Will it help or is the show still doomed to be cancelled?

Ugly Betty debuted in 2006 and follows young Betty Suarez (America Ferrera) as she navigates her way through the world of high-fashion, working at the trendy magazine Mode. Others in the cast include Eric Mabius, Tony Plana, Ana Ortiz, Becki Newton, Mark Indelicato, Michael Urie, Vanessa Williams, and Ashley Jensen.

The series was a modest hit for the 2006-07 season with a 3.7 rating in the 18-49 demographic and 11.3 million total viewers. The following year, the prized demo remained essentially the same (3.6) but dropped in viewers to 9.4 million.

For year three, Ugly Betty fell significantly, to a 2.8 rating in the demo and 8.0 million viewers. That slump would have likely placed the show “on the bubble” but the series was given an early renewal for season four. ABC Studios co-produces the series and a fourth season would ensure that there would be enough episodes for syndication.

Should Ugly Betty be cancelled?

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Unfortunately for the show’s fans, year four has seen Ugly Betty stranded on Friday nights, a little-watched evening. Predictably, the dramady has continued to lose viewers. The two-hour season premiere attracted just a 1.4 rating in the demo and 5.07 million viewers. The numbers have fallen from there and, outside of Thanksgiving weekend, hit a season low of a 1.1 in the demo and 4.26 million viewers.

With the recent cancellation of Eastwick, ABC has now decided to move Ugly Betty to the Wednesday at 10pm timeslot. It’ll move there beginning January 6th. While this is certainly a better timeslot for the show, it seems unlikely to save the show.

Ugly Betty’s viewership had already dropped significantly last season and even more fans have abandoned it this fall. Some believe that the show is having a creative comeback but, once viewers stop watching a serial, they’re unlikely to return.

While syndication helped get the show renewed for season four, it’s unlikely to help this time around. Episodes of The Mentalist and NCIS: Los Angeles were sold for about $2.2 million each to TNT and USA, respectively. In contrast, episodes of Ugly Betty only brought “a low six figures” for each installment from the lower-profile TV Guide Network.

TV show supportSo, unless the ratings for Ugly Betty miraculously see a big increase in its new timeslot, the show is destined to be cancelled in the spring. Thankfully, for fans, ABC has given the writers a heads-up so that they can plan ahead and give the show some closure if that should happen.

What do you think? Should Ugly Betty end this season or continue? Is ABC’s move too little, too late? If the show should end, should Betty end up with — Gio, Daniel, Henry, Matt, or none of them?

Canceled and renewed TV show

33 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. carole says

    I was a avid watcher of Ugly Betty until you change the time slot. And I don’t think changing it to a week day at 10 o’clock is going to help. That is a crime show time slot. I think that this is an 8:00 show!

  2. Jean says

    I have enjoyed the Ugly Betty series and would not be pleased to have it cancelled.
    The friendship between Betty and Daniel should continue with them getting together
    if the program is cancelled. I would also like to see Wilhemina get payback for all
    the nasty things she has done to almost everyone at Mode.

  3. Anthony says

    Ugly Betty got an early pick up for the fourth season, so it was most likely still a hit at the time, the problem with where the show was on thursdays it followed two hospital dramas, this year it started on friday nights in the middle or reality telivision and new documentary telivision it is now on wensday nights ending the night of actaul programing, in its first two years it was filmed on a set and used green screens in its third season it moved to new york where they tried to add more seriuse realistic plot lines such as resesion and death. Which in my oppinion made the show confusing for a plot that should stay the same not be messed with. most of the charectors added during this season were all non fashion related. it seemed to me that the show used Mode as a backround not as the shows plot, during the fourth season it continues this, i honestly thought that they were going to bring fey sommers plot back into the show for the current season, how ever then i thought that plot would better make a good plot in a later season toward the end of the series (like season 7 or 8) then when i found out it was not fey but just a charector who became ANOTHER villian to the shows plot i got mad, also making betty a little more atractive, no that does not work with me, they should wait to make betty atractive in later seasons betty should stay ugly the way the show is going it should be called “Lesser Ugly Betty” or “Even Lesser Ugly Betty” I will always be a devoted fan i maneged to at least view each episode of the fourth season, how ever because everyone in the world is out on fridays, not many people watch it or even know that it was on, and now with it being on wensday nights i think is a bad dissision its fans are younger 10 is not that late how ever i would sometimes fall asleep during eastwick which should have not been cancled abc put it on a terrible time and a terrible night with all the comedy. in my oppinion eastwick would have been a great companion for desperate housewives instead of extrea home make over and americas funniest home videos, it how ever is not to late for eastwick (irony with the one actress who stars on eastwick) I think they should have never fired rebeca romjin on ugly betty, yes her charector changed a lot how ever they could have made some good plot twists with her, instead of that idiot australian also i felt that the several episodes involving daniel joining a cult a waste of time and that daniels replacment assistant shoul have been kristen johnston not that soprano or mark. also they should have not made betty an editor not until a later season. also i think the perfect time slot for betty is sunday nights at 8 pm it is a great slot and extream home make over would make a great place for fridays, I do not think it is time to get rid of betty how ever not every show that is based in new york should be filmed in new york or change the basic plot so much in one season.

  4. says

    Ugly Betty will not get the ratings. Do you believe that after what ABC did to Eastwick anyone will watch? This has nothing to do with the show and it is probably pretty good but ABC and the people who run it are distroying thier network. It takes fans and viewers to keep a network alive and if you do not respect them, then you loose them. ABC want you to watch what they are told for you to watch period. I think the other channels are being senored as well. Take the time to see who is the head ceo of ABC, then you will get why they did this to Eastwick.

  5. Matthew Dykstra says

    Ugly Betty Lost my interest when it became more about the Mead family and its troubles and not about Betty the girl trying to make it in a world that she does not clearly belong in. I relate to that.. As soon as it became all about Mead family and that women trying to take over the company I was done with the show.. This show is on more life support to me then Trauma, The Last Season of ER and 3 Rivers.

    This show never for me should have made it beyond season 2.. this show was a train wreck from that moment when it became more about everything else and less about Betty

    Betty is a great actor and should be doing something better then this.. Go Betty Go!

    Just one mans opinion

  6. Jaci Bloom says

    Okay, Cougartown is somewhat humorous, but Modern Family is awful and I just don’t get all of the medical drama clones….

    Haven’t you noticed that ABC is getting rid of all of the chick shows like Betty and Easwick and keeping the junk thats cheaper to produce like DWTS, SuperNanny and now Find my Family!! Who is watching this stuff?? Please ABC rethink your audience who is also the main shopper in the family.. Sponsors, are you listening?

  7. Jamey L says

    ABC Execs have made me return to cable network! Yep HBO here I come, and GOD Bless F/X!! Why in the world would they move Ugly Betty to a 10:00pm slot!!?? The content of the show is definetly a 8:00 keeper! I will continue to view Ugly Betty as long as it airs. I will never get enough of Wilhelmina, Mark and Amanda!! Well hey maybe there will be a spin-off?

  8. Skysoldier173 says

    Let’s just say Jessica the only shows on ABC that are great are Castle and the Forgotten and to Loni as far as the characters being intriguing they’re not they’re a bunch of morons like the ones on The Middle, Modern Family and Desparate Housewives.Hopefully this show will go down in flames with Eastwick.

  9. says

    I like watching other programs without worrying about Supernanny and Ugly Betty being canceled by ABC. there’s more to life than being concerned about the soap operas of television.

    • Anonymous says

      i’m sorry then why are you on this website looking this article up? perhaps there isn’t more to life than reading about show cancelations and trying to get your opinion in there… gosh you’re great.

  10. Marisa says

    I am a huge fan of Ugly Betty. It’s fine with me to watch it on DVD anyway. I just hope they keep making it and don’t do what the producers of Charmed did. The show wasn’t capturing enough of an audience, so they completely ruined it in the last season with crappy new characters and a new theme song. It was a terrible way to end a fantastic series.

  11. dido says

    Oh come on !!!! Why are networks getting rid of all the good shows like Lipstick Jungle,Dirty Sexy Money,Cane,Swingtown and keeping all the shows that either have Law and Order themes or CSI how many more of those do we need? They keep getting rid of all the good shows and now you tell me Ugly Betty is in danger. Who are you polling cause everyone I talk to love/loved these shows? I think if Ugly Betty goes I will give up watching t.v. and stick to renting movies as they keep getting rid of the good,edgy,entertaining shows and keeping crap !

  12. Jessica says

    This is rediculous! First Eastwick, now Ugly Betty? What is going on? Is ABC trying to get rid of every great show on tv? Please reconsider and save both of them!!!! They are great shows and I love the characters and story lines!!!! Please ABC, don’t do this!!!!

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