Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles is in very real danger of being canceled. The quagmire of great Monday programming, especially in the 8pm time slot, is one of the culprits, but it can’t be the only reason. Shows fail for any number of reasons, and Terminator, for some reason, hasn’t appealed to the masses in a way that FOX had anticipated. Those of us what watch Terminator know that quality isn’t the issue – The Sarah Connor Chronicles is a very good action drama. Nonetheless, Terminator is, for all intents and purposes, the lowest rated show on network television in its time slot (it beats Gossip Girl in total viewers, but gets trounced by the same show in key demographics). Terminator and Chuck (another time slot mate) are firmly entrenched in the 5-6 million viewer range, putrid numbers for two well-hyped and critically lauded shows. What’s the deal?
Who the hell knows? Going up against Dancing with the Stars doesn’t help anyone, but you’d think the audiences for Terminator and dancing would be wildly different. The CBS comedies that air at the same time as Terminator (The Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother) have regularly hovered around the nine million range. Those shows probably do have a similar audience to Terminator. In fact, Chuck, Terminator and the CBS comedies all focus on the young male demographic. If one or more of those series were to be canceled, the ratings for the others would probably improve.
As sad as it is, the best case scenario for those who are fans of both Terminator and Chuck is probably this: one of the two gets canceled, and the ratings go up for the other, helping it stay alive. The smart money’s on Chuck to survive – NBC picked it up for a full season before its premiere aired – and Terminator to be canceled. It’s a sad state of affairs, especially after witnessing an episode as good as last night’s. Brian Austin Green dominated the hour as Derek Reese, who protected John and a future resistance fighter at a military school. The episode felt like a Terminator movie – the men geared up, dealt with their respective fates, and ultimately teamed together to keep John safe, all the while keeping up a feeling of dread and horror throughout the episode.
Show runner Josh Friedman has stated that he has a story outlined for four seasons of Terminator. The mythology keeps getting more intricate, and the character continue to grow in interesting ways. It’d be a damn shame if viewers kept ignoring the series, and forced FOX’s hand into an early cancellation. Unfortunately, that looks to be the way we’re heading.
-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer
(Image Courtesy of FOX)