How ABC Is Trying To Save Quantico From Cancellation

quantico abc

So far, this season has proven to be pretty kind to network TV shows. No fall premieres were a total disaster, and the major networks have yet to outright cancel any show, although several have seen their episode orders cut. Now, ABC is looking to move one of its lower performing shows in a bid to bring more eyeballs to the series. Starting after the winter break, Quantico will be airing on Monday nights instead of Sunday nights.

The writing team on Quantico actually broke the news this week, noting that Quantico will still be airing in the 10 p.m. slot starting on January 23, but that the show will be airing on Mondays instead of Sundays. That means the show will be occupying the slot that Conviction is currently airing in, which makes sense. The Hayley Atwell starrer has not been crushing in the ratings on Monday nights. A couple of weeks ago, the network made the decision to not add any additional episodes to the show's run, which means the drama will be finished airing after Episode 13. While the show's creator has stated Conviction is not officially cancelled yet, things aren't looking good.

Not that Quantico has had any room to talk. The Sunday night series is currently airing its second season, and so far the numbers have not been phenomenal. The show has failed to do above a 1.0 in Live+Same Day ratings, and while it picks up quite a few viewers thanks to DVR, the fact that the November 27 episode only did a .7 rating---and that was for its big midseason finale---does not bode particularly well.

The show has received a lot of notice thanks to its quickly-paced plot and its headliner, Priyanka Chopra. The series has never been a huge same day ratings bringer, precisely because it airs in a 10 p.m. slot on Sunday nights, but last season it was doing quite well via DVR. This season, the numbers are down across the board, and I think it mostly has to do with all of the time we've spent with Alex's double life within the CIA and the FBI. Quantico has always been a series full of twists and turns, but it has been kind-of hard to keep up recently, especially with the flashback format.

The move to Monday nights will keep Quantico in a late timeslot, but will give it a different set of shows to compete with---a set of shows that don't include Sunday Night Football and stuff airing on networks like AMC and HBO. Instead, Quantico will get a Dancing with the Stars lead-in, which may help with the number of eyeballs the show is getting. In addition, it will be airing on the same night as comedies on CBS and Fox's super campy Gotham and Lucifer lineup. It will be directly competing with Timeless on NBC and Scorpion on CBS, among other shows elsewhere on TV.

Hopefully, the move will help Quantico to bolster its live numbers somewhat. While a lot of people are recording episodes of TV programs and watching them later, live numbers are still the most valuable for the major networks. Hopefully, Quantico will keep on pushing out new episodes for some time to come. If you'd like to check out what is hitting the schedule at midseason, take a look at our midseason TV premiere schedule.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.