The end of the first season of “Terra Nova” leaves a cliffhanger that has nothing to do with the plot: Will Fox renew the drama series?
“Nova” ended its run Monday in typically solid but unspectacular fashion, averaging a 2.2 rating/6 share in adults and 7.2 million viewers overall. That put it above ABC and NBC but slightly below its season average (2.6 demo rating and 7.8 million).
Those are respectable numbers but not necessarily good enough given the expensive production costs behind the dino spectacle and the pedigree of executive producers Steven Spielberg and Peter Chernin. 20th Century Fox Television is the studio behind the 13-episode run, which was never intended to earn a back-nine order.
One indication of “Terra Nova” landing another 13 episodes is whether Fox will pick up the options on the skein’s lead actors. But even if that happens before year’s end, it doesn’t so much guarantee a renewal as it does buy Fox more time to make a decision that may be made as late as the end of January, which is more or less the deadline to get the elaborate production back in operation.
Ratings are far from the only factor in Fox’s decision on “Nova.” In addition to syndication sales in overseas markets and DVD or digital revenues, the network will also take into account that “Nova” boasts one of the bigger percentage increases among dramas in “live-plus-seven” DVR data — from a 2.6 to a 3.7 in 18-49.
This isn’t the only drama whose fate will be mulled by Fox execs over the holidays, as a decision is expected soon on a possible ninth season for Universal Television’s “House.”