Sources close to the matter claim that NBC's spy guy Chuck will get a fifth season order any day now. This will be the third straight year the show has beaten the odds for a renewal.
The fifth season of Chuck is currently slated for 13 episodes to begin in the fall. That's a little short for a broadcast show, and may be extended if next week's season finale shows strong. NBC exercised a similar option in 2009.
Chuck's third and fourth seasons were both questionable picks for renewals, but the fanbase is a vocal one. While ratings have declined along a predictable curve for a comedy, they've remained steadily in the 4-5 million range for the 2010-2011 run.
After rumors of the show's cancellation circled in 2009, fans organized a campaign to send the secret agent some backup. In addition to various email and Twitter campaigns from both fans and critics, a mass patronage of Chuck sponsor Subway caught the attention of NBC.
Chuck' Season 4 finale will air this coming Monday night. The episode is titled "Chuck vs The Cliffhanger", and will feature the titular spy teaming up with Alexei Volkoff/Agent X/Hartley Winterbottom (fan favorite and former 007 Timothy Dalton) to save his wedding to Sarah.
Check out the promo below:
Chuck is now one of the only bubble show on NBC's renewal list. Parenthood received a third season pickup with a full 22 episode run, while David E. Kelley's latest legal drama Harry's Law also received a second season.
While Chuck's rabid fanbase will certainly be pleased at the news, the declining ratings for the show are hard to ignore. Expect some more significant cuts in the budget next year as producer Warner Bros. tightens its belt. The most likely result of a cash crunch would be fewer of the series' enjoyable guest stars on screen.
There's no news on the actors' contracts or how they would apply to a new season. While the core cast will almost certainly return, supporting players may be harder to hold on to.
Chuck airs Monday nights at 8PM on NBC. Season 4 concludes on May 16th.
Follow Michael on Twitter: @MichaelCrider
Source: TV Line
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