Fox doesn't expect 'Fringe' to grow in ratings


Image Credit: FOX

With Fringe returning to Fridays this fall, Fox programming president Kevin Reilly says his expectations are modest for the show’s ratings.

“I don’t expect Fringe to grow,” Reilly told critics at the network’s press tour in Beverly Hills. “It’s a pretty complex show. If Fringe can do exactly what Fringe did last year, we’re going to be very happy. They’re right in the pocket creatively once again.”

On other dramas, Reilly sounded bullish on Bones despite splitting its season with The Finder. And he sounds confident So You Think You Can Dance will return despite low ratings this year, noting it “will be part of our summer profile going forward.” Also, House will haggle its producers deal this fall (Hugh Laurie is already signed for another year), and Reilly said no decision has been made yet about whether it’s a final season.

Game show Million Dollar Money Drop is “dead,” as you probably figured out.

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Comments (78 total) Add your comment
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  • Marissa

    That’s reassuring about “Fringe,” right? I imagine it will do very similarly to how it did this past season. I have to say, Fox has been very good to this show and I’m very grateful for that.

    • AA

      Good comment about Fox. As much as we lament the cancellations of some of our favourite shows, Fox has been good to keep Fringe on longer than the other “big three” likely would.

    • M

      I agree with AA, it’s good that Fox is keeping Fringe. It’s an amazing show. I’m trying to catch up right now, and it keeps getting better and better.
      I just with they had been equally good to Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, it was one of the best Sci-Fi shows of the last decade.

    • Jeannie

      You’re right, Fox has been very supportive of Fringe. They’ve made some mistakes in the past (Firefly’s early cancellation still stings the most) but they’ve been very patient with Fringe, despite the mediocre ratings. So thank you, Fox, for recognizing the high-quality show you have in Fringe, and keeping it on the air.

    • Darrin

      But one could argue that if Fox had left it in its original Tuesday time slot where it did pretty well in Season 1, instead of first throwing it to the lions in the most competive slot on TV and then dumping it on Fridays when no one is home watching TV, it could be pulling in much higher numbers. Still, great to see they’re sticking with it.

      • Dave

        I’ve been saying this all along. I’m glad Fox is sticking with it, but in all honestly, it’s Fox’s own fault that the ratings plummeted. It did just fine throughout the entire first season on Tuesday nights, averaging 9-10 million viewers. Moving it to Thursdays for season 2 was a bad idea. They tried to fix what wasn’t broken.

      • Shaun

        On the other hand, the lowered expectations of Friday nights means Fringe can keep pulling in the numbers they’ve been doing and still be considered something of a success.

        Really, as long as people keep buying the DVDs or Blu-Rays, etc., I think the show will be fine. It does seem like more people are discovering the show lately, so maybe it’ll get a boost anyhow. Mostly, I just hope the show gets to end on its own terms, when the producers want to end it.

  • Ryan

    I wouldn’t be surprised if it seems SOME increase in viewership. I just discovered it towards the end of last season, and plant to watch it regularly when it returns in the fall.

    • Jenny

      I started watching Fringe in May. I’m currently halfway through season 3 and will definitely be a new viewer watching on Fridays this fall. Can’t wait!

  • boocat

    This is one of the few shows I watch on network tv. I’m glad it’s coming back. I have it set on my dvr too in case I might miss an episode.

  • Good Luck Charlie

    That is a reasonable assessment. FRINGE is the best drama on tv right now, but will insist on watching trash instead

  • Peter

    No way it’s going to increase. The writers need to plan to end it this year, go out in style.

    • alan of montreal

      To a certain degree a I agree with you. What i hope is that a) the showrunners have a solid exit strategy and b) the network gives them ample time to wrap up the series whenever the time comes to cancel it, similar to the deal ABC made with Lost. I’m not saying it has to be this next season, but whenever their creativity starts to wane. This is the only serialized, must-see TV show for me, and there hasn’t been one moment when the show hasn’t been top-notch in quality–that goes for the 1st season, as well, which people often seem to deride, but which I loved all the same.

      • Dixie

        I totally agree, Alan. This is not the kind of show that can go on forever, and the showrunners have said that they know their overall story arcs. Like you, I’d like to see them get ample time to tell their story and end gracefully, not just *blip* out of existence like ole ‘whats-his-name” :D It’s the ONLY show for me as well, and I do think it’s the smartest show on tv right now.

  • Templar

    Cancel Fringe and bring back Human Target.

    • Good Luck Charlie


      I’ll admit, I was a fan of season 1 of Human Target, but the show became garbage in season 2 with Ilsa Pucci and ignoring the plot of the entire first season. FRINGE on the other hand has an actual plot, excellent acting and writing, its no contest

    • JD

      @Templar UMMMMM NO.

    • quincy

      you, sir, are extremely confused.

  • Me

    I hope Fringe kick ass this season. I love this sow but last season got little too soapy for my taste with all the baby drama and Peter having to chose the right Olivia. It kind of shifted back to where it needed to be by the end of the season.

  • Matt W.

    Yeah my fiance and I will be watching because we missed the second half of season 2, and finally got caught up after season 3 ended. I’d say two more season will be just perfect.

  • Ken

    Viva la Fringe! Tell me to buy something, Fringe-sponsers, and its bought. Done and Done.

  • nykolus

    how bout moving it back to its original night. they ain’t helping by leaving it on friday…

    • Dicazi

      Fringe does better in Fri ratings then any other show they’ve put there. That’s a major reason it was renewed.

    • Ana

      Critically acclaimed but poorly watched shows tend to last longer on Friday nights because networks’ expectations are lower. For examples see Friday Night Lights and Homicide: LOTS.

  • Dicazi

    Laurie’s signed for a year 9 and Fox is happy even if Fringe’s ratings don’t increase?? Hallejuhah!!! I’m happy!

  • Nick

    little late to have ‘House’ “go out strong”

  • Sarah

    …………..well then. I think it will. Objectively. But no one will know. It’s just all the Fringe fans aren’t Nielsen families, that’s what it is. I and everyone I know, which is many hundreds of people across the internet, aren’t getting their ratings as part of the number because we’re basically phantom viewers. And it is frustrating.
    Also. Forever judging all the Lost fans who don’t watch. You’d think them being from the same creator/ a sister show would help the ratings.

    • alan of montreal

      Lost didn’t really have the best ratings either after the 1st season. It maintained a loyal base, however, much like Fringe has.

      • Dave

        Lost had excellent ratings for the first two seasons, and maybe even a little of season 3. And even when the ratings went down, its “loyal base” was probably almost 3 times as big as Fringe’s.

      • Shaun

        Well, if the Lost fans want to see a show that really does seem to have a plan, and is more likely to have a satisfying ending (assuming FOX sticks with it), then they should be watching Fringe!

    • Ruby

      If I were a Nielsen family, I would for sure watch it live. However, I am not. Thus I typically watch it online (or on a friend’s DVR). Thanks Nielsen for being an outdated, slightly absurd system. You guys don’t even look at apartments or dorms for God’s sake!

  • Mojo

    What does bullish on Bones mean?

    • PDDB

      You’ll never know since this writer doesn’t usually provide complete/accurate information in his articles.

    • Darrin

      Bullish is a Wall Street term – it means they’re hopeful about its chances of success. As opposed to ‘bearish’, which would mean they expect it to decline.

  • GV

    Yeah!!! It is the best sci-fi show on tv the drama the actuon the suspence can’t wait!

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