Last Resort: Shawn Ryan Not Shocked Series Was Cancelled

Shawn Ryan, the co-creator of Last Resort, wasn’t shocked that the show was cancelled by ABC but it’s still disappointing. In a recent interview on Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show, Ryan shared his thoughts.

He said, “Our ratings had really been on the cusp or a little bit below the cusp for a few weeks now so [the cancellation] didn’t come as a huge shock. We were all hoping for a bounce but, the funny thing is there’s so much data now on viewership that you can always find some thing that looks good for your show. For us it was, ‘Hey, were doing better than that timeslot’s done for a couple years even though we’re not doing well overall.'”

“It’s a brutal timeslot. we’re up against Big Bang Theory which is the number one comedy on TV, we’re up against X Factor, we’re up against NFL football games on the NFL network which draws a lot of men and a lot of men like our show.”

Ryan concluded, “So, it wasn’t a huge shock but it’s still a big disappointment. I would compare it to, if you have a relative who becomes terminally ill and you know it’s coming but there’s still a shock when it happens.”

Why did ABC put Last Resort in such a tough timeslot? Ryan said, “The first point was [ABC says] ‘We gotta put something there; we don’t go dark at 8pm on Thursdays…’ They had had some initial success three years ago with FlashForward. That premiered big and eventually cratered, but at least they got an audience at the beginning — an audience that was a little more male. They thought [Last Resort] was a big, bold concept that would attract people. They were worried about putting something that was a little more normal, that it would get swamped and disappear.”

He feels badly about the cancellation, mostly because of the crew. Ryan shared, “It’s really disappointing for the people who work on the show, the crew, who work on a weekly paycheck. The fact is, I’ll still be able to feed my family though I’m crushingly disappointed creatively that we won’t be able to continue the story. And yet I’m very clear that there are people who are now going to be out of a job in a few weeks with this decision and these are people who were working 14 or 16 hour days on behalf of the show and I feel very bad for them.”

What do you think? Were you surprised that Last Resort was cancelled by ABC? That the show didn’t get better ratings?


14 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. paul galofaro says

    I enjoyed the show very much. First class all the way. If I missed it on Thurs night I caught it on my DVR or On Demand. I don’t know if that show or any other gets credit for viewership if not watched in it’s original time slot. A real shame that it is gone.

  2. Cshel says

    loved the show…..I would DVR it and then watch after everyone went to bed so as to have no interruptions….such a pleasure …and now it’s gone…so sad

  3. BLUE EYES says


  4. says

    You know that scene in the Social Network where the tech kid creates a web site to compare girls on the campus? Imagine something like that with TV shows and compare Last Resort with any others that are on today. How many would there be better? I can think of maybe two.

    I can barely wait for all this timeslot TV nonsense to be over with and we can all watch what we want when we want it online. Then we would’t have to compare dramas with comedies or sport events or bloody reality shows.

  5. Paul Meath says

    one last point
    I wanted to watch revolution for the same reason … different and unique …. I am still watching it but compared to Last resort … so much inferior with the wrting and acting and story telling …. And for that show to be picked up for a second year and last resort not ,,,, a crime

  6. L. G. says

    I really liked the show and am disappointed that it is being cancelled. Couldn’t they try it in another time slot??

  7. Anonymous says

    I thought it was a great show, well written and well acted. Both my teenage sons liked it as well. Very disappointed it has been cancelled. Too bad they couldn’t put a show as good as this, with this great cast, in a better time slot.

  8. says

    I think the show is a winner. The marketing… a looser! Heck, i didn’t even know about the show until its 5th episode! Frankly, I thought it could have been a major motion picture event, or even a mini-series with a TV sequel. Andre Braugher was at one of his best! I think he far out-shined the other actors. Frankly, i kept wondering if the crew would ever get off the island (kind of like Gilligan!), and if they did what would they do?

    I also think the submarine tech was amazing. Do we really have any of that stuff or is it all made up in Hollywood? (ok, so there was some old-school stuff that’s hard to believe is still in use!). (and of course, even though it’s a sub, i can’t say I have seen the periscope in any episode).

    Maybe we’re all so busy laughing at ourselves with Big Bang Theory and Two and 1/2 Men that it’s kind of difficult to get the wives to sit beside us men and enjoy the voyage that is now destined to go to the bottom of the sea!

    • Ronon says

      One of the reasons the show did so poorly is how angry the Navy is at how it is portrayed and a huge military audience was lost because of it. Additionally the “submarine” shots were horribly wrong and grossly innacurate. The only “submarine” feature that could possibly be considered worse is Crimson Tide. So to answer your question we have and do use some of that tech….but the real thing is not hollywooded up.

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