Networks have tied themselves in knots trying to replicate Lost
, resulting in one expensive failure after another. Revolution
may be a success at long last, but is that because its like Lost
or because it's a less gory version of The Walking Dead
ABC isnt a good example of a "safe" network. It's been just a step or two up from NBC in terms of being a disaster. The safer networks are FOX (which wins in the 18-49 demo) and CBS (good demo due to having the largest audience even if it skews old).
CBS got to where they are today by taking the least chances of any network, no sf/f genre shows for instance unless you count a doctor or lawyer talking with angels or ghosts as genre. FOX has been very unambitious for the current season and I think their lack of daring might hurt them, but the jury is still largely out.
Even if broadcast is being incentivized to take no risks, there's always cable, where the incentives are more in the risky direction, because of the different economies that make one cable viewer more valuable than one broadcast viewer (especially premium cable) so that catering to niche audiences makes more sense. That's the reason why Game of Thrones
and Mad Men
can exist at all.
ratings on ABC are far from solid
and the show may be headed for cancellation.