This Week in Sci Fi TV: Humans Renewed for a 3rd Season and 7 More Things to Know

By | April 1, 2017

1.  Will Return for a Third Season

Word broke earlier this week that the AI series Humans will be returning for a thirdseason. That show airs on AMC in the U.S. where it had mediocre ratings in its first season which dropped even lower during its second year run (which just wrapped up). But the series comes in a partnership with the British Channel 4 and the viewership is much higher over in the UK. This is one of those shows that benefits from its international partnership and does not have to have high ratings in the States to survive. It has also been generally well received by the sci fi community here and abroad. The third season of Humans will have eight episodes like the first two and will air at some point in 2018 (fans are likely hoping that it will not be another year and a half wait between seasons, though).

2. ABC Has Pulled from the Schedule

In what appears to be the first cancelling of a sci fi / fantasy series by the broadcast nets for the 2016-17 season (axed Braindead was a CBS Summer entry), ABC has announced that their time travel series Time After Time has been pulled from the schedule effective immediately and will not air its remaining episodes in its regular Sunday 9 PM EST timeslot. The network has not officially cancelled the series yet (they avoid that word at all cost these days), but this effectively spells the end for the show.

The news comes as no surprise seeing as Time After Time debuted with low ratings then subsequently slipped to historically low levels for a Big Four broadcast network series. I had predicted that the time travel series would get pulled at some point after its low debut, and apparently ABC finally decided they had seen enough in the way of low ratings. There is no word at this point on whether the remaining three episodes will get a burn-off run or will be made available for online viewing.

3.  Gets Renewed for a Second Season by Netflix

Netflix’s dark comedy Santa Clarita Diet, about a woman who catches the zombie virus but still tries to go about her normal life, will be returning for a second season. The renewal was announced in somewhat grisly fashion in the clip above that says the show will be returning for “seconds” in 2018. That series, which stars Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant, debuted earlier this year and has received mostly good reviews thus far (it has a 70% Fresh Rating on Rotten Tomatoes). Netflix does not share its viewing numbers, so I am not certain how large its audience was in its first year, but it has become almost expected now for the streaming services (particularly Netflix and Amazon) to renew their originals for at least a second season.

4. More Renewal and Cancellation Announcements on the Way

The Upfronts are upon us when the broadcast networks and cable channels meet with advertisers and set their schedules for the upcoming season. So expect plenty of renewal and cancellation announcements, as well as series pickups, to come out of these meetings. From now until mid-May, several of the cablers and media outlets will be having their meetings. Then the broadcast nets will kick off there presentations starting on May 15th. Expect most of the renewal / cancellations announcements from those nets to occur the week before that and series pickups could be announced then as well or on the week of the presentations. Below is the schedule for the broadcast nets and you can see the full Upfront schedule here. Stay tuned to this column for a full rundown of all the announcements from the upfronts concerning sci fi & fantasy TV shows.

  • Monday, May 15, 2017 NBC
  • Monday, May 15, 2017 FOX
  • Tuesday, May 16, 2017 ABC
  • Wednesday, May 17, 2017 CBS
  • Thursday, May 18, 2017 The CW

5.  Improves in the Ratings

On Wednesday, Syfy’s The Expanse improved to a 0.17 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic with 570K total viewers. That comes after three weeks of declining ratings, and perhaps the recent activity from the show’s fanbase has brought it more attention as well as its coverage in Wired and Rolling Stone.

In other ratings news, FX’s Legion wrapped up its first season with a slight improvement to its numbers, pulling a 0.42 rating with 810K total viewers. That show has been renewed for a second season. On Thursday, NBC’s superhero comedy Powerless slipped to a series low 0.6 rating with two million total viewers (based on the preliminaries) after returning from two weeks of preemptions. That show definitely looks to be in trouble at the moment and is in danger of getting yanked from the schedule like ABC’s Time After Time.

Keep up with the latest ratings news at

6.  Debuts, Returns Next Week

April is upon us which means that the Spring season kicks off next week. Debuting on Hulu on Tuesday is the sci fi anthology series Dimension 404, and returning for its third season on the same night is The CW’s iZombie. Also on that night, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.returns from hiatus to wind down its fourth season and Legends of Tomorrow has its third season finale. You can keep up with the current listings of sci fi and fantasy shows each week at this link.

7.  Debuts in April

There are plenty more new and returning sci fi & fantasy shows coming in April including Hulu’s adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian book The Handmaid’s Tale. That one has its debut on the streaming service on April 26th. You can see the full rundown of April returning and premiering shows here.

8. First Look at Season 7

HBO’s Game of Thrones usually has its season premiere right around April, but that has been delayed this year because they needed some extra time to prep the show’s upcoming epic seventh year. Its debut has been set for July 16th and you can get a glimpse of what to expect with the latest teaser above. You can get a preliminary look at the the sci fi and fantasy shows that will debut Summer or later here.

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