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AxWatch: ‘Cane’ vs. ‘Reaper’

October 10, 2007 5:27 PM

caneblog.jpgLast night’s two lowest-rated scripted shows were CBS’ family drama “Cane” (a slight 2.3 rating among adults 18 to 49) and The CW’s supernatural dramedy “Reaper” (an even slighter 1.3). Yet odds are more favorable that “Reaper” will earn a pickup than “Cane”—mainly because CBS sets a higher bar for series performance than the niche-targeting CW. “Power is sweet,” but low expectations are sweeter.

Also, “Cane” has sunk three weeks in a row while “Reaper” has seemingly stabilized. Last night’s “Reaper” bested the third-week performance of The CW’s “Gossip Girl,” which garnered a pickup Tuesday. The show still trails “Gossip” in The CW’s core demo of 18 to 34, however (a 1.7 for “Gossip,” a 1.4 for “Reaper”).

CBS was the first network to fire a show last year, axing “Smith,” which had the same troubled time period as “Cane.” “Smith” averaged a higher rating, but it fell off faster than “Cane” week by week.

Plus, all sorts of other factors drift into the equation, such as whether the network has anything better to punch in a slot, a show’s cost and even executive pride. In all three cases, things tilt toward “Reaper” outliving “Cane.” The CW doesn’t want to lose a quality show; CBS doesn’t want to support a show that isn’t competitive in its time period.

For now, network executives are playing a cautious game of wait-and-see, thrown off balance by this season’s X factor of significantly increased DVR viewing (set at 20 percent penetration and counting). The general consensus on factoring in DVR viewership is that hit shows are still hits, flops are still flops, but middle-ground/borderline cases could shift due to the additional measurement.

With both “Reaper” and “Cane” arguably borderline, upcoming DVR viewership figures may decide the fates of both.


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Comments (16)

ron:

Well, of course CBS will yank it - I like it. Seems like any show I actually watch and invest time in, gets the ax.

'Cane' has a great cast, great writing, a worthy story line and nice 'texture'. KILL IT QUICK and air another kid nation or dumb games show!

Maybe these dufas execs will do the whole 'yank it and alienate its viewers by putting the remaining eps on the website' again!

Imagine if 'Seinfeld', 'Cheers', or 'Hill Steet Blues' premiered this season. They'd all gone by week 3!

ron:

Well, of course CBS will yank it - I like it. Seems like any show I actually watch and invest time in, gets the ax.

'Cane' has a great cast, great writing, a worthy story line and nice 'texture'. KILL IT QUICK and air another kid nation or dumb games show!

Maybe these dufas execs will do the whole 'yank it and alienate its viewers by putting the remaining eps on the website' again!

Imagine if 'Seinfeld', 'Cheers', or 'Hill Street Blues' premiered this season. They'd all gone by week 3!

cartwa:

Yawn. I watched Cane. It is a show about nothing. It is not sexy, it is not funny, it is not scary, it is not suspenseful, it doesnt make me think, it doesnt do anything. It lacks an identity.

Val:

Ugh. Reaper is a good show. Why isn't anyone watching it? Give it a chance, people! I'd like to see a whole season of it, at least. I guess that like other shows that fight to stay on the air, Reaper is too good for network television.

grecian:

I watched the first episode of Cane. Jimmy Smits is real good and the actress portraying his wife is pretty attractive. Although I liked the first show, it feels a bit preditable. I haven't felt the need to watch episode 2 & 3 yet on the tivo. I'll get around to it one of these days.

Reaper, on the other hand, is a fun show. Ray Wise should get big props. The dude creeps me out. I love the idea the show is set in a Home Depot like store. The show is Clerks and Ghostbusters rolled into one. Very cool. Plus, Missy Peregrym is simply hot.

Lucia Munoz:

I love Cane.... Great cast, and it is getting better. Worthy to watch

debbie :

i like cane but i also like life and friday night lights and those are the three shows i have been watching this season so go figure but ive been telling people about all three and even bought the last year of friday night lights on dvd and gave it to friends to watch

Joanne:

I say keep Reaper.

For one hour every Tuesday I laugh myself sick. Such a nice change of pace.

The cast is great and so is the writing.

I vote for Reaper.

Eric:

CBS will probably yank it. They yanked another show that I really loved, and that was "Jericho." That show was one of the best shows to come along in a long time, but CBS never gave it a real chance because of when they aired it.

I guess we're stuck with more "reality" crap and unintelligent TV such as "Cavemen." Stop the insanity!!!

Karen:

I look forward to Tuesday nights for Cane it's got a great cast, good drama, and a developing story line. I hope CBS gives it a chance.

Amy:

Just wonderful.......We watch both shows. Actually they are the only shows we watch on Tuesday nights-every Tuesday. My husband practically rolls off the sofa during reaper he's laughing so hard, and I just love Cane. We are so sick of the reality tv shows.

FRAN ACHNITZ:

I AM ABSOLUTELY SHOCKED THAT CBS WOULD EVEN CONSIDER DROPPING "CANE"! IT IS BY FAR THE BEST NEW DRAMATIC SHOW OF THE YEAR!!! WHAT ARE YOU THINKING. THIS SHOW HAS A GREAT CAST OF ACTORS, A GREAT STORY, AND A CHANCE TO BE A GREAT FAMILY EPIC!! THERE IS WAY TOO MUCH TRASH ON TV TODAY. THERE IS A RUN-A-WAY OF REALITY TV. I COULDN'T WAIT EACH WEEK FOR A NEW EPISODE! PLEASE RESPECT YOUR VIEWERS OPINIONS AND ABOVE ALL RESPECT THE TALENTED ACTORS, WRITERS, AND CREWS THAT PROVIDE GOOD SHOWS! WE COULD USE MORE SHOWS WITH SUBSTANCE AND A LOT LESS OF SITCOM RE-RUNS AND SOME OF THE MORE SHOCK VALUE REALITY SHOWS!


Barbara Robinson:

I can't believe you are taking CANE off the air. Cane has a great cast and a good story line. Give it a chance. I watched the show every week and couldn't wait for the next week to see what will happen next. You have to consider putting this show back on the air.

Dan:

CANE - was very worthy of being watched and antic-ipated weekly. I found it very enjoyable and re-laxing.I followed it weekly and religiously. Never missed an episode, till the "Strike". It's a SHAME, that you are trying to get rid of it, It is much better than , most other series that I find on the television.We, out in the viewing world are tha Loser's, but what about the NETWORK?

Janet Hutchison:

I really enjoyed Cane. Looked forward to seeing the show and was amazed that it was taken off the air - good cast - good story - kept my interest
can not believe the ratings are bad have talked with several people that also watched the show.

Holly:

I have been waiting and hoping that cane would come back on, I can't believe that it was cancelled. I dont think that it was given a chance I think that it would have been fine if it was on more then a couple of months. I think the strike killed the show not the ratings, no one new when it would be on because of the strike.

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