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Code Black still has a pulse.
The network has gone out of its way to make Code Black work. Hot for a medical drama of its own, like ABC mainstay Grey’s Anatomy or even dependable NBC spinoff Chicago Med, CBS granted the show a second season despite its unassuming first run.
The sophomore renewal brought a talent infusion with the addition of Rob Lowe, though the already modest episode count went down. Code Black, a joint production between CBS TV Studios and ABC Studios, filmed 16 episodes in its second year after an 18-episode freshman season. Viewership dipped, but not that much. The show’s second season shed about 15 percent with an average 1.7 rating among adults 18-49 and 8.2 million viewers.
The renewal for a series not completely produced in-house is especially noteworthy given the Big Four’s increased push for ownership going into the 2017-18 season. NBC did not pick up any pilots from outside studios to series, and the other broadcast networks have also been leaning heavily towards in-house projects in recent days.
However, CBS has a long-standing relationship with ABC Studios tied to the hit procedural Criminal Minds, which is also a co-production. That series, which served as Code Black‘s lead-in, has been renewed for season 13.
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