Emergence Season 2?
Let me preface this article with this: I was a pretty big fan of Emergence during the first 9 episodes. The last 4 episodes (in my opinion) though… lost their edge. Their mojo. Their intrigue. So, what are the chances for Emergence Season 2?
We’ll get into where I think the show went wrong shortly, but right now – let’s talk numbers.
Ratings are always the biggest indicator when it comes to renewal and cancellation decisions. Emergence premiered with a .79 demo (decent) and just over 4 million live viewers (kinda okay). For ABC, this was a pretty reasonable start for the show – Tuesdays at 10 is a tough time slot.
Over time though, those numbers dropped. A lot. With not quite an average demo of .5 and just 2.7 million live viewers – that would cancel most broadcast network shows. (Most, but not all.)
Delayed viewing has helped with ratings over the course of the season – but even doubling their initial live numbers – it’s just not enough.
The biggest (and ugliest) number of them all though? The ratings for the finale (episode 13). The demo hit .3 and just under 1.9 million viewers – the overall lowest for the entire season. To give you an idea of how “not great” this is – most finales at least show some uptick in viewers as that is the episode most fans want to see live. Not. Great.
Why did viewers run away?
The biggest question of them all: Where did initial fans of the show go? Perhaps some didn’t like the story. Maybe there were too many breaks in the episode schedule. Some may have made this a “DVR show” and still haven’t come back to it. Whatever the reasons, there are a few things that I think turned off viewers. (And if they get a shot at season 2 – they could rectify.)
Too Much Jo
I’ve heard rumblings from a number of viewers that the show was too focused on Jo. And while I personally love Allison Tolman (and the incredible storytelling she does without even saying a line…), they may be right. There were a lot of great characters to the overall story – and I think more focus on Piper, Alex, Benny, Brooks, and even Chris would have been nice.
Think about it. How many questions do you still have about ANY of those characters? And, I bet, not so many about Jo. She may have been a little too centrally focused.
This is a pet peeve of mine. And if you don’t agree, well… sorry, not so sorry. The little love triangle that’s been teased for the last bunch of episodes was one thing and slightly too exaggerated… But in the finale actually seeing the strain with Jo and her two potential guys? No, just no. It wasn’t needed and it took away from the real story of the show.
There’s absolutely no benefit to her character’s arc or the overall storyline by having her struggle to understand her feelings about both Alex and Brooks. Soap opera drama doesn’t belong in this type of show.
(And, for what it’s worth… If this ABSOLUTELY had to be part of the show … the reconciliation with Alex does the most for both characters.)
Too Much Too Soon?
Something I kind of liked with this show… We didn’t have to wait forever for answers. We learned a lot along the way and the writers/creators didn’t stretch it out. In many shows – we might not have even learned about everything Piper is until the finale – or even a second season!
I liked this. I liked that we learned something new almost every episode instead of being left wondering. But, is that a problem for some viewers? Do they need those question marks to continue watching a show?
I have some questions that don’t totally make sense… Was Jo really carrying that bracelet around the whole time? Why couldn’t Helen remove it? How in the heck did she die so easily?
How did Benny really die? Is he really dead? What was the upload and is it even still a concern going forward?
Where the heck did the Splinter people go? I thought they were a huge group of people. No?
Things happened sometimes too easily or quickly – and didn’t seem so genuine. This could definitely turn some viewers away.
My last piece of advice to the writers and creatives… The whole “government can control Piper” story is a terrible idea. Please, please, please reconsider. Find a different villain – not the same old bad guy that pops up in every other story. You’ve done better than this – and should continue to do better.
What can fans do?
Fans can scream and shout if they’d like – but the ONLY shot this show has is in delayed viewing. How many people will stream/watch the show over the next month. And, to be frank, it’s going to have be a huge number.
I thought this show had a chance when I saw the cast did a TCA panel a few weeks ago. Normally, a decent sign for a show going forward – now, I’m not so sure.
Production costs are high and I’m sure their ratings didn’t match what was sold to advertisers – so it’s going to take a large effort by fans to see an Emergence Season 2.
Whatever happens, an announcement probably won’t be made until the network upfronts in May.
So, until then, bring out your inner Piper – and make things happen.
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