ABC renews ‘Scandal,’ ‘Nashville,’ others; cancels ‘Happy Endings’

Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope in a scene from "Scandal."
(Richard Cartwright / AP)

ABC is staying in business with Shonda Rhimes, giving series renewals to her Thursday babies “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy.” The network also picked up the dramas “Castle,” “Nashville,” “Once Upon A Time” and “Revenge,” and the comedies “Suburgatory” and “Modern Family.”

That “Scandal” was renewed is an obvious #duh. The drama has become the network’s buzziest show, spurring countless trends on Twitter during its Thursday airings. The political thriller, about a fixer (Kerry Washington) and her band of so-called “gladiator” helpers, is averaging a 2.4 in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic and pulling in about 7.4 million viewers on average. Its season finale airs next week.

Meanwhile, Rhimes’ other series, “Grey’s Anatomy,” is slated to head into its 10th season. The medical drama is one of the network’s top-performing scripted dramas.


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And unassuming steady performer “Castle” remains a key force for the network. This season, the Nathan Fillion procedural is averaging 9 million viewers. It also celebrated its 100th episode this year, and found an afterlife in syndication on TNT. Sunday fantasy drama “Once Upon a Time” has also been a steady performer for the network since its launch. The series, from “Lost” writers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz, is pulling in about 9 million viewers and a 2.7 in the 18-49 demo in its second season.

Country crooner “Nashville’s” fate, however, seemed less certain. The Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere soap launched with high expectations last fall. And though it opened to 9 million viewers, things would dip considerably. The show, which has released two soundtrack albums already, has seen its viewership fall -- averaging 6 million total viewers and a 1.9 in the 18-49 demo.

And after some reshuffling behind the scenes, “Revenge” will continue on -- after what some viewed as a wonky season -- for a third outing. The drama had a lot riding on it as it moved from its Wednesday slot to Sunday’s in the fall, and not many viewers seemed to make the move with it, with the show seeing a significant drop in viewers. Series creator Mike Kelley recently departed as show runner.

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On the comedy front, “Suburgatory” will return for a third season. The show about suburban life held its own on Wednesdays, averaging 6 million viewers and a 2.1 in the demo. And, naturally, the network’s comedy kingpin, “Modern Family,” will continue on too.

But its fast-paced ensemble comedy “Happy Endings” couldn’t find a happily ever after. After kicking off its third season as part of the network’s Tuesday comedy block, it was eventually moved to Fridays. And it was doomed from there. It aired its season finale -- now series finale -- May 3.


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