NBC Has Put Its First New Drama Of The Season On The Chopping Block

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The fall TV season kicked off last month with a bunch of new shows hitting the broadcast networks, and NBC is apparently so disappointed with its newest legal drama that the show is already on the chopping block. Starring Jimmy Smits of Sons of Anarchy (and potentially Mayans M.C.) fame and Caitlin McGee, Bluff City Law had the chance to be a new enough kind of legal drama that people would be hooked, but that hasn't turned out to be the case. While the show isn't cancelled yet, it's effectively gotten the axe from NBC.

Bluff City Law is set to wrap after the original order of 10 episodes concludes its run on NBC, according to Variety. That's not quite a cancellation, but dramas that launch in the fall season without a full season order generally at least aim for an order for more episodes. Instead, Bluff CIty Law has apparently been disappointing enough to the Peacock Network that only four episodes were enough for it to basically be cancelled.

The unfortunate news for Bluff City Law likely won't come as a surprise for TV fans who have been keeping an eye on the network ratings for the fall season so far. In Live+3 day numbers for the key 18-49 demographic, Bluff City Law is averaging only a 0.9 rating and an audience of 6.3 million viewers.

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While that is a bump from the Live+Same day averages, which TV Series Finale reports are a 0.65 rating and 3.9 million, it still isn't great, and the numbers have been steadily dropping from week-to-week.

None of the broadcast network shows in the 10 p.m. ET time slot on Mondays, which are The Good Doctor on ABC and Bull on CBS in addition to Bluff City Law on NBC, are stellar in Live+Same day, but The Good Doctor and Bull (which could have been axed itself if CBS dealt with allegations against star Michael Weatherly differently) are more or less consistent in their numbers.

Bluff CIty Law dropped from on 0.8 rating for its premiere to a 0.5 rating for its fourth episode. Basically, Bluff City Law was not scoring the kind of numbers likely to convince NBC to keep it on the air beyond the initial episode order.

The Bluff City Law reveal comes just a couple of days after news broke that NBC was pulling freshman comedy Sunnyside after only four episodes, with the rest of the Season 1 episodes releasing on Hulu, the NBC app, and NBC digital platforms. Could Sunnyside get a second life and find a new audience via streaming, or will it lose even more viewers once it's dropped from broadcast? Would Bluff City Law be better off moving to streaming rather than keeping its time slot?

Whatever happens, the odds are pretty good that Bluff City Law is done for good after the end of its ten-episode run. The doesn't have the ratings or the rabid audience likely to motivate another network or a streaming service to rescue it. If you want to see the final run of Bluff City Law, tune in to NBC on Mondays at 10 p.m. ET. Join CinemaBlend in keeping track of the biggest trends in ratings with our weekly ratings rundowns on Fridays!

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. CinemaBlend's resident expert and interviewer for One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and a variety of other primetime television. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).