CBS is about to unveil its delayed 2023-24 schedule finally. It’s been a long wait for viewers as the 2023 Hollywood strikes held off the network. Yet, right after the Super Bowl, viewers can see their old favorites returning. Sadly, it will be the swan song for some notable shows. It’s confirmed already that SWAT and Young Sheldon will end after their upcoming seasons, while Blue Bloods gets an extended final season ending in the fall of 2024.
Speaking to Deadline, CBS Entertainment chief Amy Reisenbach hinted that there may still be other cancellations as the network shifts its focus to long-term development. With the loss of money due to the strikes and shortened seasons, CBS is looking to trim costs and that sadly means axing more stuff for fresher (and cheaper) series.
That’s a worry for a few shows, some long-running ones, and the costs of them are rising. With the new season upon us, here’s a look at four CBS shows that could be on the chopping block and if they can survive for another year.
CSI was once one of CBS’ flagship franchises, but that time has long passed. The new revival was a surprise as some thought it would just be one year, but it is going on longer. However, a shift to Sundays, a busier time period, can be rough on the show, which already has a large budget due to the ensemble cast.
The series has been low-rated and lacks some of the fire the original show had. With so many other franchises set already, CBS may think it’s time to put CSI to bed once more and free up the space for another show that may work better in the time slot.
CBS is already ending some big comedies this year with Young Sheldon and Bob Hearts Abishola. So the idea they ax another long-running sitcom may seem crazy. However, The Neighborhood is entering its sixth season, which is usually when the costs for a show start getting higher. The large cast requires a large salary, and it’s likely they’ll want to negotiate bigger deals.
The show has hit 105 episodes and is ready to go into syndication, which is generally when a studio or network thinks it may have run its course. It could still survive with CBS wanting some older sitcoms to build around, but if the network decides to let other shows go because of cost, then The Neighborhood could end up being a surprise axing in the spring.
So Help Me Todd
Despite mixed reviews, the legal dramedy managed to get a second season. The question is if it can last. CBS does have a habit of renewing a show only to end it a season later (such as the well-received God Friended Me), and Todd has been lacking some of the mainstream buzz a show requires to keep going.
Its spot on Thursday nights is going to be threatened when ABC’s slate comes back in March and if the series can’t build up its audience in Season 2 then nothing may help Todd in getting a Season 3.
CBS loves their procedurals, and The Equalizer has been a success. However, the cost may factor into its final fate, like other shows. While not public, it’s believed Queen Latifah’s salary is in the upper millions, a hefty fee for a big star. There’s also the high production costs of an action-oriented TV show set in New York.
The small cast does cut costs a bit, but with production fees getting higher and salaries being renegotiated every year, there’s a possibility that CBS decides four years is enough for this show. It might be able to eke out one more year, but there’s a high cost for action shows on network TV, which can play a role in The Equalizer ending sooner than expected.