Back in the Game: Sitcom Cancelled by ABC

Back in the Game sitcomABC has decided not to order any more episodes of Back in the Game, their Wednesday night sitcom. The network initially ordered 13 episodes and filming was completed yesterday.

Co-creator Robb Cullen broke the news about the cancellation on Twitter. He wrote, “So, ABC has decided NOT 2 move forward w @BackInTheGameTV 2 all of u fangles and friends, I can’t begin 2 thank u for all of ur support.” He later indicated that the remaining seven unaired installments are expected to be broadcast.

Airing out of The Middle, Back in the Game follows a single mother (Maggie Lawson) and her son (Griffin Gluck) who move in with her gruff father (James Caan). Despite having no experience, the boy desperately wants to play baseball so his mom, a former All Star, gets roped into coaching a new team of misfits. Others in the cast are Lenora Crichlow, Ben Koldyke, Kennedy Waite, J.J. Totah, Cooper Roth, and Brandon Salgado.

The sitcom debuted in late September to a 2.2 rating in the 18-49 demographic with 8.01 million viewers. Unfortunately, the numbers have been dwindling downward since then.

What do you think? Are you sorry to hear that Back in the Game has been cancelled? Did you enjoy the show? Will you watch the remaining episodes?

90 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Sam says

    This is predictable. Trophy Wife is owned by ABC while Back in the Game is owned by 20th Century Fox. ABC gets residuals from Trophy Wife, not back in the game. So despite the fact Trophy Wife is doing slightly worse, it got a full season renewal. Also, ABC has been heavily discounting the pricing of its advertising on Back in the Game as advertisers for some reason did not like the show (perhaps because it is a mirror image of the “Bad News Bears” from the 1970s?) When the girl power hitter was added to the team’s lineup, it became a mirror image of the 1970 film starring Walter Matthew (with James Cann in the mirror role). The only difference was Maggie Lawson as the daughter living with her father. Not enough for renewal in the end.

  2. ND Mitchell says

    I did enjoy this series especially James Caan and Maggie Lawson characters with their funny father-daughter chemistry. It was also good to see Ben Koldyke. He is such a good actor from HBO’s Big Love and the other ABC cancelled series, Work It. Ben, if you are reading this, stay away from the ABC network…you are not loved….LOL.

  3. Chris says

    Oh man, this stinks, I really love this show! There’s so much other garbage on (read:too many reality shows for example) and they cancel this gem! I’ll be watching each of the remaining episodes.

  4. Mark. says

    ABC: This is the best family comedy show now. All the kids I know love Back in the game. You cancelled this show, then we don’t watch ABC any more.

    • Jason says

      I’m disappointed that the show is canceled. I enjoyed the cast, particularly Maggie and James Caan, and I wanted to see where it goes. I will certainly keep watching.

      Sorry you seem to have a problem with gay people. I’m gay and as far as I know I’ve never done anything to you. Some shows have gay characters, some don’t. Some get canceled and some don’t. I don’t think one thing has anything to do with the other.

      • Rose says

        To Jason… I don’t have a problem w/gay people… have gay friends… I don’t like it always “pointed out” to me…. No one gets on tv saying they’re straight, do they?

        • Jason says

          Straight people get on TV saying theyre straight constantly — not in words but in actions. It’s all the time, non stop, on shows and in commercials. As a gay man, it’s nice to see someone who’s gay once in awhile. I suspect it’s how minority races felt watching TV in the 50s and 60s. You may think that there are a lot of gay characters on TV but there aren’t. Count the straight ones and count the gay ones and you’ll find its a very small percentage. Sorry if it bugs you but I appreciate it. Being represented has been a long time in coming. Right now, they’re still relying on some stereotypes but that’s getting better.

  5. Andy says

    This was a painful show to sit through. It wasn’t funny. James Caan was disgusting. And the baseball angle was terrible. We would watch The Middle, try a couple minutes of this then turn the set off and then turn it back on for Modern Family.

    Back in Game should never have made it past the pilot.

    • Leo says

      I totally agree, it was the weakest link on ABC and Maggie Lawson was way to good for that show. Looking forward to seeing her on Psych again, thank goodness she is in most of season 8, although i bet she regrets cutting back her screen time on season 8 for this awful show.

  6. Angus says

    I thought this was the only new comedy really worth watching. I’m still hanging onto a couple of the others, but I’m losing hope for them.

    • Rose says

      Tay, we tried to watch the new normal (which was certainly NOT normal) and it was awful… and Partners was worse… the only one that has a gay that’s hilarous in Modern Family.

  7. d wilson says

    SAD, SAD, SAD…Must not be Gay enough, or filthy enough for the 30 something crowd.

    Just good clean family fun. let’s cancel it.

  8. Paul says

    It’s so predictable with these network excutives, The best new comedy this year and it gets canceled. These Network excutives all need to be fired. A pack of monkeys could do a better job of promoting and evaluating shows then these idiots can.

  9. Rose says



    • Jason says

      Okay, aside from that being a ridiculous and ignorant thing to say, it was clear that one of the young players was certainly gay. Hello?

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