Sources at the netlet confirm that "The Vampire Diaries" has been picked up for its back-nine, bringing the breakout drama to 22 episodes total. The vote-of-confidence for "Melrose Place" is a bit smaller, with The CW requesting an additional five episodes, for a first season of 18.
With "The Vampire Diaries," the only surprise may have been that it took The CW this long to formalize a pickup that was as good as guaranteed after the teen vampire soap pulled in 4.91 million viewers in its premiere, the netlet's most watched series launch.
For the season, "Vampire Diaries" is The CW's most watched show in total viewers and ranks behind only "Gossip Girl" in the netlet's core demo of women 18-34.
There was less certainty surrounding "Melrose Place," which has struggled to capitalize on initial media buzz, drawing only 1.52 million viewers and a 0.7 rating in the 18-49 demo in its most recent airing. Despite the cancellation of "The Beautiful Life" and the use of that Wednesday time slot for repeats, "Melrose Place" hasn't displayed any meaningful ratings growth over the past few weeks.
The CW is presumably holding out hope that the November arrival of Heather Locklear will galvanize viewers in the same way she elevated the original FOX series.
Like most of The CW's lineup, both shows get big DVR bumps, gaining roughly 40 percent apiece in total viewers and 30 percent apiece in the female 18-34 demo.