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2008 – 2009 Cancelled Shows: ABC Renews 12 TV Series, What About the Rest?

According to Jim, Cupid, Samantha Who?The ABC network has announced renewals for a dozen of their current series. It looks like America’s Funniest Home Videos, The Bachelor, Brothers & Sisters, Dancing with the Stars, Desperate Housewives, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Grey’s Anatomy, Lost, Private Practice, Supernanny, Ugly Betty, and Wife Swap will all be back next season.

None come as a big surprise since ABC is still doing pretty well enough in the ratings. The weakest among the renewed series are certainly Wife Swap and Supernanny but they’re relegated to Friday nights. Expectations are lower on that night and the shows don’t cost as much to produce anyway.

Unfortunately, ABC has had little luck in launching any new hit series. Private Practice is the youngest of the shows on the renewal list and its already been around for two seasons. America’s Funniest Home Videos has been on the air for almost 20 years. So, now that ABC has committed to the obvious renewals, what about the rest of their shows? Where do they stand?

According to Jim — This sitcom has been performing very poorly in the ratings for awhile but kept getting renewed because additional episodes could be added to the profitable syndication package. Though ABC’s president, Steve McPherson, said that the sitcom might return, the sets were bulldozed quite awhile ago. It’s not coming back.

Better Off Ted — The office sitcom, paired with Scrubs, hasn’t been attracting many viewers. Next week’s episode, the seventh installment, is the final one that’s scheduled to air. We may see the remaining six episodes at some point but it’s highly unlikely the show will get renewed for a second season.

Boston Legal — The five year-old series aired its finale in December. Denny Crane and Alan Shore won’t be returning next Fall.

Which ABC show should be saved?

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Castle — This romantic dramady has decent viewership but much of that can ultimately be credited to the powerful Dancing with the Stars, which kicks off the evening. ABC typically renews at least one struggling freshman drama per season. If they continue with that trend, this seems like a likely candidate.

Cupid — This remake of the 1989 Jeremy Piven series hasn’t been performing well in the ratings at all. The network hasn’t shown much faith in it either. It looks like a goner. Sign the Petition

Dirty Sexy Money — ABC renewed this drama last season but the ratings weren’t very good in year two. The network pulled it midway through the season and the final four episodes are now set to air on Saturday evenings beginning July 18th.

Eli Stone — This quirky drama didn’t attract enough viewers for a renewal. The final four episodes will be surfacing on Saturday nights, starting June 20th. The show certainly won’t be coming back for a third season.

Homeland Security USA — This reality series about the men and women who protect our country didn’t generate much interest with viewers. The series debuted in January but was pulled in March. There’s no word about when or if the five remaining installments will see the light of day. One thing’s for sure, there won’t be a second season.

In the Motherhood — Loosely based on a web series, this sitcom didn’t attract many viewers. The network has pulled it after four episodes and isn’t expected to return for another season. There are two episodes left unaired.

Life on Mars — ABC had great expectations for this Americanized version of a BBC show but it never took off. The network pulled the plug but gave the producers just enough time to give the series some closure in episode 17.

Opportunity Knocks — The Aston Kutcher reality game show was pulled from the schedule after three installments. The rest are expected to air this Summer but they aren’t making any more.

Pushing Daisies — A beloved but ratings-starved series. ABC will get around to airing the final three episodes on Saturday nights, beginning on May 30th. On the positive side, series creator Bryan Fuller has made a deal to continue the piemaker’s story in comic book form and would like to do a movie. On the negative side, there won’t be any new episodes coming to ABC.

Samantha Who? — This sitcom looked like a winner last year but, without the advantage of a Dancing with the Stars lead-in, not enough viewers tune in. ABC has pulled the show from the schedule and has seven unaired episodes left on the shelf. The network may burn them off during the Summer months or hold onto them until next season. If it’s the latter, it’s possible the network may order additional installments at some point to make a complete third season.

Scrubs — Though ABC’s McPherson has said that the show might return for an ninth season, it seems highly unlikely. Series creator Bill Lawrence and several performers are set to leave at the end of this season and wouldn’t be coming back if the show did. On top of that, the ratings are terrible. Recent reports have indicated that ABC is considering renewing if costs can be cut and Zach Braff agrees to do guest appearances. Though it could happen, it seems very likely that this one is dead.

Surviving Suburbia — The network picked this Bob Saget sitcom up after Media Rights Capital’s deal with The CW fell apart last Fall. Like Castle, the series has been getting good ratings but it loses 50% of the Dancing with the Stars audience. If they can get more episodes inexpensively, ABC may bring it back but the ratings certainly don’t mandate a renewal.

True Beauty — Viewership for this reality competition certainly wasn’t a thing of beauty for the network. ABC let the season play out but it would be a big surprise if it returned for a second year.

The Unusuals — This one hasn’t been performing very well either but ABC clearly would like it to succeed. CBS is still having great success with cop dramas and ABC doesn’t have any. Word is that they want at least one for themselves. Though the ratings don’t warrant it, this show is a possible candidate for the network to take a chance on and renew it.

We’ll know for sure what ABC has planned for the upcoming season once the new schedule is announced on May 19th at the network’s upfront presentation to advertisers.

 

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

vicki May 10, 2009 at 7:23 am

If my vote matters to any execs….My whole family like CASTLE !!! I hope you will stick with this good show.

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Tammy May 9, 2009 at 7:34 pm

I LOVE Castle and The Unusuals! Give them a chance! DWTS sucks!

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KITTYCA May 9, 2009 at 10:10 am

Castle!Castle!Castle! I am in nursing school and I study,nap,work, go to school all continuously but on Monday nights I am gonna throw the books down and turn on this show. The best thing on television in awhile. While I do peek in on DWTS while studying, I dont even listen to Surviving Suberbia, but when Castle comes on the studying stops. I love it and if ABC cancels it well lets just say that my grades will improve cause there will nothing else GOOD to do but study…. Please keep Castle! thanks for listening Kitty

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Anonymous May 7, 2009 at 6:11 pm

me parece fatal, yo en lo personal disfrutaba enormeente de esta maravillosa serie. Estoy enganchadisima con eta serie, espero que reccapaciten t continuen.

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erikw May 5, 2009 at 6:08 pm

What a miserable network. Send Lost to another network and I can forget about ABC altogether.

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Marilyn May 5, 2009 at 9:34 am

Flip I agree with all the people who want to keep Cupid it is fun romantic sometimes very serious and a great show
CASTLE WILL BECOME EVERYONE’S FAVORITE GIVEN A CHANCE
Castle is even better than Cupid, but in a different way it shows as a film at the threater.. The stars are great all the way through from the Main star to the police woman Mother daughter all fantastic great themes. Maybe you think I am crazy, the new show Unusuals is really addictive after a couple of shows.
Do you have anything to do with Monk…. he should not be canceled after 8 yrs either

.

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Holly May 2, 2009 at 9:39 pm

Castle. It’s witty, it’s sexy, I laugh out loud. Cancelling it would be almost unforgivably stupid. Keep Castle!!!!

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Liv April 29, 2009 at 4:26 pm

I’ve been hooked on this show ever since previews started showing up months ago! It is very well written and nathan and stana are amazing together on camera. The plot is interesting and hilarious all of the time! This is pretty the only show I bother to watch anymore. I don’t know what I’d do if it was pulled off the air. Castle completely deserves to have a nice long run on abc.

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Mother Folker April 29, 2009 at 12:19 am

Castle. Castle. Castle. Seriously. I have NEVER watched DWTS. Don’t pull a FOX move on us.

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PeggySue April 28, 2009 at 9:28 pm

Finally a show that keeps you on your toes as to whodunit as well as being funny and charming at the same time. Give this show a chance. I would watch it no matter what channel or timeslot it was on. And Nathan is simply adorable.

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Melissa April 28, 2009 at 8:21 am

Definitely pulling for Castle here! It would be a huge shame if this show was axed after it’s first season. It’s smart, funny and the leads Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic have amazing chemistry together. I may be a bit biased with my love for Nathan Fillion, but this guy definitely deserves to have a hit show that the network support.

Better Off Ted, too, is an amazing show that I look forward to every week, but I really don’t have much hope for it’s renewal =(

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Heather April 27, 2009 at 9:09 pm

I don’t watch Dancing With the Stars at all. I watch one show on TV religiously and that is Castle. Please don’t get rid of another smartly written show. I love Lost, Grey’s, House and Private Practice, but Castle, is the one show that I’m up on from episode one! Fillion deserves a show with a good run!

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BJ April 27, 2009 at 8:34 pm

Okay ABC, if you DON’T renew Castle, I am NOT going to be too happy…

BJ

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Rock April 27, 2009 at 8:30 pm

I’m definitely pulling for Castle. It’s way better than anything else listed here, with the exception of Lost, AFV, and maybe Extreme Makeover. But heads will roll if Castle’s pulled. I can’t believe people continue watching garbage like Desperate Housewives or The Bachelor. Waste of money and resources.

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Spaceman Sam April 24, 2009 at 3:44 pm

It’s a bitter pill to swallow that ABC is giving The Unusuals some attention to try getting it to succeed. It’s sitting in that black hole known as the 10pm Wednesday slot after Lost that seems to be a graveyard of good shows that everyone’s too tired to watch after Lost.

It’s bitter because ABC supposedly wanted Life on Mars to succeed, yet it got stuck in the same 10pm Wednesday black hole after a 2-month hiatus, and failed to promote it at all when it returned. Life on Mars was a much better show, with tons more depth and character, and ABC should have been trying much harder to make it succeed. It’s an insult to see them trying to save The Unusuals now after Life on Mars was axed so cruelly.

I know a lot of fans are trying to get ABC to re-run some of these good shows, especially Life on Mars, alongside some of the unused episodes of other good shows (like Eli Stone, Pushing Daisies, etc) that they’re burning off over the summer. It’s sad they’d rather produce more garbage reality shows like Dating in the Dark and I Survived a Japanese Game Show than give some of their better shows a second chance.

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