King of the Hill: FOX’s Mike Judge TV Show May be Saved by ABC

King of the HillLast week, we reported that FOX’s venerable TV show, King of the Hill, had been cancelled after 13 seasons. The animated series has slipped in the ratings and the network has other animated series like Mitch Hurwitz’s Sit Down, Shut Up and Family Guy spin-off The Cleveland Show waiting in the wings. In what seems to becoming a growing trend of TV shows jumping networks, the Mike Judge co-created King may find life on another channel.

King debuted in 1997 and tells the story of blue-collar Hank Hill and his family and friends from Texas. The series stars the vocal talents of cancelled TV show veterans like Judge (Beavis and Butt-head), Kathy Najimy (Veronica’s Closet), Pamela Adlon (Lucky Louie), Stephen Root (NewsRadio), Brittany Murphy (Sister, Sister), Toby Huss (Carnivale), David Herman (Futurama), Ashley Gardner (The Drew Carey Show), and Lauren Tom (Men in Trees).

A spokesman for 20th Century Fox TV, the studio that produces King, has confirmed that another network has expressed interest in picking up the show for season 14. The rep declined to name which one it is but all signs point to ABC. The alphabet network had no comment. ABC is set to debut another animated series, The Goode Family, by midseason. Goode and King share executive producers Judge, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky.

ABC has had a difficult time finding new comedies in recent years and currently only has the sophomore Samantha Who? sitcom on its schedule. When NBC dumped Scrubs after seven seasons, ABC picked it up for what is assumed to be the sitcom’s final year. It’s expected to debut in early 2009. According to Jim, which has seen a ratings decline over the years, is expected to kick off its eighth and likely last season on December 2nd.

Would a King pickup make sense or be too much of a gamble for ABC? If Goode is a hit, it’s obvious the two would make solid programming companions.

Should King of the Hill be cancelled?

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Unfortunately, it would be almost a year before the two series could be paired. Because it typically takes nine months to produce new episodes of King, season 14 couldn’t realistically debut on ABC until Fall 2009. What’s more, because FOX will still probably have season 13 episodes to air, ABC would likely have to delay their own King episodes even longer. Goode could be long gone by then.

If Goode quickly tanks or isn’t renewed, ABC would be stuck with an expensive, mid-to-low rated animated sitcom that had been cast off by another network. As FOX has learned, animated shows fair best when shown in pairs.

King could conceivably move to a cable station but that seems highly doubtful. The show’s voice talent and creative team would likely make the series too expensive for a cable outlet to finance on their own.

Of course, there is a possibility that King could be revived by FOX, the network that cancelled it in the first place. Though execs want to refresh the animation block, they may change their tune if one or both of the two new animated series don’t live up to expectations. Stay tuned! TV Series Finale home page

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9 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Kyle says

    Reply to the canadian your a jack ass its a tv show grow up if that hurts your feelings then seriously canadians are weak ass losers just like everyone believes

  2. Marc says

    I love King of the Hill and I’d hate to see it go because its the only animated sitcom out there that uses calm laid-back humor, which I love.

    Cant believe they’re replacing it with yet another Family guy type show. I hope they do get picked up for another series. Mike Judge what a legend.

  3. Bellicose says

    Hate to see this show,and I do hope ABC is smart enough to pick it up. I used to be a Mcfarlane fan Family guy etc., but when he started to spew nothing but Liberal diatribe out of the corners of his mouth, he crossed the rubicon with me. King was obviously more family friendly and not as “edgy” as say a dog with child porn on his laptop or mocking people who have strokes. If Fox wants this to pass as what it takes to make a show with laughs, I’ll pass thank you. Judge has always approached his shows with a bit of irony and if people don’t get that then sophomoric humor is all that their mind can discern. So now they got what they can get.

  4. Canadian says

    This crappy show was on its way out anyways, but if it wasn’t it should be. It’s filled with trailer trash, hillbilly world views and typical republican narrow-mindedness. The entire final episode trashed Canadians and was completely insulting. If this joke of a show had another season left in it, which it doesn’t, it just alienated a whole country full of good people. The way Canadians were portrayed was cliche and disrespectful, not to mention a complete generalization. This wasn’t done as a tongue in cheek mocking to get laughs, such as South Park, but with malice and derogatory innuendos. I’m not going to even stoop to Mike Judge’s level by characterizing Americans the way the rest of the world sees them. Adios, Mike Judge, hope next time you’ll remember that America no longer has the political or social wherewithall to be demonizing other cultures, remembering the last laughable 8 years.

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