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The CW has recently released the dates for winter premieres, including those for new Arrow/Flash spinoff Legends of Tomorrow and the return of The 100 for its third season, while The Vampire Diaries and The Originals are moving to Fridays. Fortunately for CW viewers who aren’t into the superhero or vampire scene, however, some good news has come down about the network’s hour-long comedy series: Crazy Ex Girlfriend and iZombie have had extra episodes officially ordered, bringing Crazy Ex Girlfriend's episode count up to 18 and iZombie’s up to 19.
The CW had already asked for extra scripts beyond the original order from both shows, and The Hollywood Reporter reports that solid critical reception has been enough to overcome relatively soft ratings for the CW…for now.
Crazy Ex Girlfriend has averaged only 1.04 million viewers and a 0.4 rating in the valuable 18–49 demographic, airing after critically acclaimed sophomore series Jane the Virgin on Monday nights. iZombie has been doing better, averaging 2.06 million viewers and a 0.9 in the 18–49 demographic, airing in the enviable timeslot following The Flash on Tuesday nights.
While the numbers for both Crazy Ex Girlfriend and iZombie would be low enough to be cancelled yesterday for the major four networks, The CW has lower expectations. Until recently, The CW was known more for shows such as Gossip Girl and The Vampire Diaries, but network efforts to diversify its series have allowed shows such as Crazy Ex Girlfriend and iZombie a bit of leeway. Besides, The Flash is The CW’s current high roller in the ratings, and even its highest ratings in the 2015 – 2016 were only 3.87 million and a 1.5 rating.
Still, Crazy Ex Girlfriend receiving the order for extra episodes is something of a surprise. According to TV By The Numbers, ratings for the freshman show have been abysmal even for CW standards, and the most recent episode pulled in only 0.89 million viewers and a 0.3 in the key demo.
Both Crazy Ex Girlfriend and iZombie are perhaps helped by the fact that none of the other networks have similar shows, making it likely that audiences who comes to these series may be audiences who stick around in the long run. After all, musical comedies aren’t exactly the norm on prime time, and there’s no better time to capitalize on the zombie craze, especially with a nuanced approach.
While 18 and 19 episodes for Crazy Ex Girlfriend and iZombie still aren’t huge orders for full seasons, the extra installments may bode well for both shows being renewed for another season. It’s much too soon to predict whether or not Crazy Ex Girlfriend will manage to pick up enough viewers for the CW to greenlight a second season, and even numbers as solid as those for iZombie don’t have a superhero franchise behind them to guarantee renewal. Still, the extra episodes are a show of faith from The CW, and we can only hope that they’ll be worth watching.
Crazy Ex Girlfriend airs on Mondays at 8 p.m. ET and iZombie airs on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET, both on The CW.