Crusoe: A Mini-Series or Just a Doomed-to-be-Cancelled TV Show?

CrusoeLike its namesake, NBC’s newest high-adventure series has had a rocky journey. The network believed in the Crusoe TV show enough to give it lots of promotion — airing dozens of commercials during its Summer Olympics coverage and erecting a “treehouse” in the middle of New York City for a publicity stunt. At the same time, they saddled it with a Friday night timeslot, one of the least-watched nights of television. Did the series ever have a chance for survival?

Crusoe is based on the Robinson Crusoe novel by Daniel Defoe, first published in 1719. The series follows the adventures of a young man, Robinson Crusoe (Philip Winchester), who leaves his wife, Susannah (Anna Walton), and children to embark on a high-seas adventure. He hopes to find enough riches to settle his impending debts. Crusoe ends up stranded on a remote tropical island where he rescues and befriends a native named Friday (Tongayi Chirisa). While trying to find a way off the remote island, the two must battle the elements and intruders for survival. Crusoe also features Sam Neill, Sean Bean, Mia Maestro, Mark Dexter, Emma Barnett, Jake Curran, James Lauren, James Middlemarch, and Lorcan O’Toole. Featuring lots of special effects and costumes, the series was filmed in South Africa.

The TV show debuted on October 17th on NBC. The Crusoe two-hour premiere attracted a modest 7.38 million viewers. It placed second in total viewers for the first hour and for the second hour, it moved up to first place. Unfortunately, the show was third in the all-important 19-49 demographic with a 1.6/5 rating/share. That means that, overall, it drew an older audience which isn’t what the network needs or wants. Taking into account all of NBC’s promotion, this wasn’t a very good start for the historical drama.

Should Crusoe be cancelled?

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The following weeks’ ratings didn’t bring better news. The second episode dropped to 6.09 million viewers and a 1.3/4. The third week’s episode dropped almost a third of its viewers and brought in just 4.09 million and a dismal 0.8/3 rating/share. The TV show’s ratings hit a slight upturn for two weeks but last week’s episode hit an all-time low of 3.56 million viewers. That’s less than half of the premiere’s total audience.

After seven episodes (five hours plus the two-hour premiere), NBC has decided to relocate Crusoe to Saturday nights beginning December 5th. This move will cause viewership to drop even further and it’s a sure sign that the network has given up on Crusoe.

So, is Crusoe a regular TV show or a mini-series? Most of the network’s press materials have treated it like a regular TV series but, on NBC’s website, Crusoe is referred to as a “high-action, fast-paced, thirteen-part series.” (A representative for the network declined to clarify.) With a mini-series, viewers could be assured of a conclusion to the storyline. In the case of a regular series, closure is less likely. Either way, Crusoe is coming to an end.

Unfortunately for the show’s loyal audience, it’s nearly impossible to think that NBC will renew the costly series or produce any additional episodes. In terms of viewer demographics, it’s been a disappointment from the start. On the positive side, the network will very likely finish airing all 13 episodes. For now, it looks like the remaining six episodes will air on December 6th, December 20th December 27th, January 10th, January 17th and, as a finale, January 31st.

Will the last episode show Crusoe returning to his family or will loyal viewers be left stranded with him? Stay tuned! TV Series Finale home page

Canceled and renewed TV show

123 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Maryam says

    Hmm…i guess this show is ok, watched a few episodes on hulu… by the way, the whole season 1 is available on
    however, hulu is only available in the US. But it is completely legal, but there are a few ads.

  2. Carolyn says

    What a great show. Action, suspense, plots and more.
    I tuned in every week and wouldn’t miss it for quids.
    Unfortunately, I missed recording the last 30 minutes.
    Was out and only set for 2 and half hours.Can someone fill me in on final 30 mins or is there a site I can go to to watch what I missed.
    Great show and bring it on again next season.

  3. belle says

    I love this show. Its so different from anthing else on TV these days. Its smart, funny and adventurous. The only thing it lacks is sex which believe me im not complainging everything these days is saturated in it. It’s refreshing to watch a show that didnt need it, or rely on it for a good story.
    I think NBC should either pick it back up for another season, film a tele-movie finale or auction it of to another station. Im sure theres a station out there that is in tune with the audience and would give it the timeslot and second season this brilliant show deserves.

  4. Erica says

    I loved Crusoe I am very dissapointed that the show has been canceled. It was a different kinds of show then what is on tv now a days. I am 24 from the us!

  5. Jack says

    I actually just watched this series on Hulu and i couldn’t get enough. I watched all 13 episodes in 4 days i think. It was great. I’m really disappointed they didn’t at least end the series by having him get back to England. Even if it was a crappy ending it would have been better than what they did. I was really let now. I’m 18 and it captured me, i wanted more. I wish they had made a second season!!!

  6. says

    I am 14 years old a I personally love that show alot. It kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. Please bring it back my saturday night would be nothing without it. Cancel it and I gauruntee that CBS will loose a ****- load of veiwers!

  7. says

    Wow! I was only 16 years old last year and I loved Crusoe and this year I coudn’t wait for the second season until RIGHT NOW I just found out that its been cancelled and I am disapointed of that and now im 17!

  8. cuma says

    very good film
    macera devam etsin
    My English is bad.


    should get rid of Robinson after-kurtuduktan, but still looking for her return to the island, a little adventure and return to Britain. returns to the island and adventure does not end …

    adventure that takes resolve.

    stops along the island fled to the island life, adventures do not end in.

    Robinson should not get rid of.
    Look at stores on the island again, because they do not leave, the bad guys, looking for him.

    various reasons to go back to the island robinson. Why should screenwriters create.

    1. number Crouse

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