A surprise and a shocker!
After some indecision, NBC is definitely bringing back the beloved but middling-rated "Chuck." And, against all odds, Fox is keeping Joss Whedon's "Dollhouse" alive for another 13 episodes, despite its extremely low ratings (about 2.8 million viewers). "Dollhouse" seemed to have no chance of survival.
NBC announced the return of a number of series a few weeks ago, including "Southland," "Heroes," "Law & Order: SVU," "Friday Night Lights," and "Parks and Recreation," but the fate of "Chuck" was hanging in the balance. With every night at 10 about to go to Jay Leno, a not-so-sure bet like "Chuck" might not find a slot.
But NBC has bought 13 more episodes of the Josh Schwartz series, albeit with budget concessions. According to Michael Ausiello at EW, "Chuck" will return with supporting cast members in fewer episodes, two fewer staff writers, and possibly the elimination of one actor altogether. Now the Save "Chuck" campaigners can stop pigging out on sub sandwiches.
The return of "Dollhouse," starring Eliza Dushku, was considered highly unlikely, and, according to the Live Feed, it may be "the lowest-rated in-season scripted drama to ever get a renewal on a major broadcast network." But the show's DVR viewing is strong, and the online streaming numbers are high. These days, it seems, a small but passionate fan base may be enough to tip the scales for renewal. Nielsen numbers are no longer the be all and end all.
Might you be pleased?