NBC cuts Heroes episode order for season four

TVGuide.com reports that NBC has cut the number of episodes it will order for Heroes' fourth season, down to 18-20 from 25 this season.

Citing a report in Ad Age, the site says that the cutbacks were ordered because the show's latest episodes may have reinvigorated fans, but a series of complicated and wide-ranging storylines cost the show ratings in season two and earlier this season.

NBC will also have five fewer prime-time hours to fill in the 2009-'10 season as Jay Leno will take over the 10 p.m. timeslot on weekdays.

The reduced order is part of a trend: ABC ordered only 16-17 episodes of Lost in recent seasons, and CBS's Harper's Island has a 13-episode format that could be repeated.

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