From 'Chuck' to 'V' to 'Human Target,' HitFix handicaps TV Shows on the Bubble
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BubbleWatch: ABC's 'Happy Town'
SHOW: "Happy Town" (ABC)
IN ITS FAVOR: "Happy Town" has a great cast and many of those stars -- Geoff Stults, Sam Neill, Amy Acker, Steven Weber, etc. -- have tons of fans from previous work.
AGAINST IT: None of those fans came out for the show's premiere, which averaged under 5.25 million viewers, a 1.7 rating in the 18-49 demo and dropped significantly at the half-hour mark, suggesting some measure of audience distaste. Reviews were also savage.
OUR TOTALLY UNINFORMED GUESS: Wednesday 10 p.m. is becoming a Death Slot for ABC, having already killed "Eastwick" and "Ugly Betty," with "Happy Town" almost inevitably joining them. Not to get negative, but shows with this kind of premiere ratings and zero critical support rarely last their full run of episodes, much less earn renewal. Right now, we don't think "Happy Town" is on the bubble for Season Two. The bubble is for whether or not ABC will allow the full mystery to play out on Wednesday nights. With a lack of viable alternatives, we suspect they will. And who knows? Maybe the ratings will turn around.