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Television Renewals and Casting News: Is "Ben and Kate" on the Precipice of Cancellation?

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | October 23, 2012 |

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | October 23, 2012 |

The CW has ordered a full season of “The Arrow,” a surprisingly not completely inept superhero show. The pilot, while cheesy and badly written, was nevertheless entertaining, although the second episode left much to be desired. But if you like shows like “The Vampire Diaries” and “Grimm,” “The Arrow” hits that same guilty sweet spot.

Meanwhile, Showtime has picked up “Homeland” for a third season on the same week that several critics began wondering — after all the bombshells so far this season — how the show will manage to sustain itself for the rest of just this season. At some point, they’re probably going to have to completely reformulate the show to keep it going, but I’m certainly OK with the continued bombshells. I think Aziz Ansari summed up “Homeland’s” problem the best:

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Also, ABC Family has announced that “Bunheads” will be back in January, which is great news for those of us who love stories without any story in them.

Meanwhile, over on Fox, they’ve picked up a third season of “The X-Factor” (don’t care), but also added two more episodes of “Raising Hope” to its third season, bringing it to a full season order along with “New Girl” and “The Mindy Project.” The show left out of that Tuesday night equation? “Ben and Kate,” which is still sitting at 19 episodes and, given its ratings, the most likely candidate to be replaced at mid-season, like by Scott Foley’s “Goodwin Games.” It’s a shame, too, because “Ben and Kate” is my favorit new sitcom of the season, but it’s also the lowest rated new show among network freshman series that hasn’t yet been cancelled.

A friendly reminder: “Happy Endings,” the best comedy on network television that is not “Parks and Recreation,” returns tonight. You should also know that the Halloween episode of “Don’t Trust the B—— in Apt. 23” — which also returns tonight — will feature a crossover character from “Happy Endings,” while Mark Paul Gosselaar will also appear on a future episode of “Happy Endings” as Max’s new roommate (and yes, I did briefly have some difficulty keeping Mark Paul Gosselaar and James Van Der Beek apart in my head. I don’t sleep a lot).

Here’s some quick casting news: Betsy Brandt (“Breaking Bad”) will appear on “Parenthood,” as the wife of Ray Romano’s character; Jane Fonda is getting her own ABC sitcom, “Now What?” as a mother who moves in with her grown daughter; Christopher Douglas Reed, who plays Filthy Phil on “Sons of Anarchy,” will play a biker on a future episode of “Raising Hope”; Michael J. Fox is returning to “The Good Wife” in January; T.R. Knight (“Grey’s Anatomy”) is also visiting “The Good Wife,” as a political operative; and Bret Harrison (“Breaking In”) will co-write and star in “Married with Roommates” a pilot for ABC about two couples in different stages of their relationships living under the same roof.

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.