DATA REPORT: “Last Man Standing” Reboot on Fox

After “Last Man Standing” was canceled in 2017 from ABC, it seemed like it was the last we’d see of the program. But with the reboot of “Roseanne” proving to be a tent-pole program for ABC, drawing in right-leaning viewers, Fox stepped up to revive “Last Man” – another favorite of conservative viewers due to Tim Allen’s public political leanings.

The SQAD Data Team pulled ad cost numbers from the MediaCosts: National database for the last season of the show on ABC to see the what the advertising landscape looked like as it wrapped up the final season. Additionally, the team pulled ad cost numbers for shows that “Last Man Standing” will be competing against in the upcoming season on Fox, as well as on other networks during its time slot.

The Team conducted the comparison analysis using upfront unit cost data. The report is divided into the following three parts:

“Last Man Standing” In Its Last Season on ABC, 2016-17


The Data Team evaluated “Last Man Standing” during its last season on ABC before it was cancelled, comparing it against some of the top shows during the 2016-17 season. The show came in at the bottom for average upfront unit costs, at $73,113.

During that season, “Last Man Standing” was 56% behind top performer, “Modern Family”, which had an average unit cost for the season of $166,289. It also trailed “Grey’s Anatomy” by 55% and “Scandal” by 49%.

How the “Last Man Standing” Reboot Compares Against Shows on Fox 2018-19

The reboot is scheduled to premiere on September 28, joining a stable of popular programs including “Empire”, “Gotham”, “The Gifted”, and “Family Guy”. The Team analyzed the average upfront costs from last season (2017-18) to help set context for the “Last Man Standing” reboot on the network.

Comparing the final season of “Last Man Standing” against the ad cost performance of current Fox network shows:


Unless advertisers find a new excitement for the reboot of “Last Man Standing”, Fox may not have high expectations for the program to deliver big numbers for advertisers. If the new version of the show holds on to the advertiser interest from their final season, it will take the last spot on the network against other Fox shows airing this season.

The leading scripted drama delivering major ad revenue for this season on Fox is “Empire” at an average cost of $280,987, with “Star” following behind at $143,170 and then “Lethal Weapon” at $131,534. This places ad costs for “Last Man Standing” at 74% less than those for “Empire”.

The “Last Man Standing” vs. Competing Shows on Other Networks

While “Last Man Standing” probably won’t be the leading revenue generator among Fox programming, it may have a shot against competing shows airing in the same time slot on other networks.


Looking at the programs set to air on other major broadcast networks on Fridays at 8PM, we see that the final season numbers of “Last Man Standing” are holding their own for the time slot, taking second place behind “Fresh off the Boat” on ABC – which has nearly a 20% lead.The reboot comes out ahead of “Blindspot” on NBC ($65,353) by 12%.