The ratings for Law & Order: SVU may have come down this season but it’s still one of NBC’s top-rated dramas. To no surprise, NBC has renewed the venerable cop show for a 14th season. In addition, they’ve ordered a new drama from Dick Wolf, Chicago Fire.
Season 13 of SVU has been averaging a 1.92 rating in the all-important 18-49 demographic with 6.96 million total viewers. Year-to-year, the show is down by 24% in the demo (vs a 2.5 rating) and 18% in viewerrs (vs 8.48 million). It’s currently the fourth highest-rated scripted series on the network.
This season of SVU has been the first without longtime showrunner Neal Baer and star Christopher Meloni. Last month, Mariska Hargitay signed a new deal to continue with the show if it ended up getting renewed. Considering the state of the rest of NBC’s schedule, that seemed highly likely.
New showrunner Warren Leight has introduced more personalized storylines that include newcomers Danny Pino and Kelli Giddish. Earlier, Leight told TV Guide, “I don’t want it to be a victory lap… I want it to be 14 years down, seven to go, as opposed to 14 years down and it’s been a good run.”
He also said, “I get so tired of people saying that the show is down from Meloni… From the point of view of scripted hour-longs, we’re performing very strongly for NBC. Would we perform differently for a different network? Probably. Or with a different lead-in? Probably.”
Chicago Fire is described as an “action-driven drama exploring the complex and heroic men and women of the Windy City’s Fire Department.” The cast includes Teri Reeves, David Eigenberg, Charlie Barnett, Lauren German, Monica Raymund, Taylor Kinney, Jesse Spencer, Eamonn Walker and Merle Dandridge.
What do you think? Are you still an SVU fan? Are you surprised that it wasn’t cancelled after Meloni left? How do you think this season compares?
Image courtesy NBC.