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'Parenthood' should return for fifth season

Ray Romano as Hank and Lauren Graham as

Ray Romano as Hank and Lauren Graham as Sarah in “Parenthood." (Credit: NBC)

NBC's “Parenthood” ended its fourth season last night, and, as everyone well knows, the axman lurks. Now fans anxiously await: Will their beloved Bravermans be back for a fifth? I'll get to the answer later but -- SPOILER ALERT -- let's get to some a narrative reason or two why the show must go on.

Last nighT, without getting into too many specifics, someone's cancer was eradicated; someone was adopted; someone said he loved her; someone else said he loved her; someone left for Minneapolis; someone left for Hawaii; someone got pregnant; someone apologized for being a jerk; someone cried; someone laughed. In other words, the show could have conceivably ended it all last night, because the big wheel of life turned for the Bravermans and it all seemed to end up on a very propitious number.

But consider, if the show does get a fifth, any of those story lines could turn out very differently, as soap (and “Parenthood”) fans well know.

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Now, will it get a fifth? The numbers come out a bit later, but I'm going to say: An unequivocal “yes.” The show has usually hit a two rating adults 18-49 this season (a very good number indeed), and that goes up considerably (by as much as a rating) over the next few days when the DVR playbacks are counted. The show wins its time period, and while the viewership seems low (around five million) it's still perfectly respectable for an NBC drama. “Smash” takes over the time period in two weeks and if it somehow goes through the roof, then I reserve the right to scrub the preceeding. But I suspect NBC is happy with the short-order for both series -- "Parenthood” had only a 15-episode season. Keeps the show fresh, and fans all the happier when it returns in September.

 My final answer: “Parenthood” gets a fifth season.  

Tags: NBC , parenthood , Peter Krause , Adam Braverman , Lauren Graham , Sarah Braverman , Dax Shepard , Crosby Braverman , Monica Potter , Kristina Braverman , Erika Christensen , Julia Braverman-Graham , Sam Jaeger , Joel Graham , Savannah Paige Rae , Sydney Graham , Xolo Mariduena , Victor , Max Burkholder , Max Braverman , Joy Bryant , Jasmine Trussell , Tyree Brown , Jabbar Trussell , Miles Heizer , Drew Holt , Mae Whitman , Amber Holt , Bonnie Bedelia , Camille Braverman , Craig T. Nelson , Zeek Braverman

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