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Shark: CBS Gives James Woods Series the Hook — No Season Three

SharkCBS has decided to cancel Shark after two seasons on the air. What killed the series?

Shark debuted on September 21, 2006 and stars James Woods as Sebastian “Shark” Stark, an arrogant and cutthroat prosecutor. The TV show did pretty well in its first season on CBS. It ranked 24th for the season with an average of 13.7 million viewers. The one downside was that the show’s viewers tended to skew older. But, in a season littered with prematurely cancelled drama series (Smith, 3 lbs., The Nine, etc.), the show’s ranking and survival was an impressive achievement. The series was renewed for a second season.

Season two kicked off on Sunday, September 23, 2007. In that 10pm timeslot, Shark had to compete against ABC’s popular Brothers & Sisters and consistently lost in total viewers and the all-important 18-49 demographic.

Like most shows, Shark’s production schedule was interrupted by the writers strike. When the strike was over, production resumed and four more episodes were created. After a long absence, new episodes began airing in late April. In the show’s new Tuesday night timeslot, it was easily beaten by ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and FOX’s Hell’s Kitchen in both total and 18-49 viewers.

The show’s chances for a third year were still up in the air until just recently. Ultimately, the combination of Shark’s inability to attract younger viewers, the writers strike, and CBS’ excitement over its new dramas is likely what led the network to cancel the series.

Woods tells the LA Times that the cast and crew were “very saddened” by the news but were trying to stay positive. He continues, “We’re a little baffled by the decision but we’re very supportive… None of us can figure out quite why. But we have no bad feelings. This show did an enormous amount for me personally. We all won doing the show.”

>The current season, cut short by the writers strike, is made up of only 16 episodes. Shark’s series finale is scheduled for Tuesday, May 20th. It’s unlikely that the episode will offer any kind of closure for the series. Stay tuned! TV Series Finale home page

 

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{ 333 comments… read them below or add one }

Mary and Gary August 4, 2013 at 7:50 pm

We loved Shark and were so dissapointed to see it go, Woods is one of our favorite actors ever. “They” can make up any excuse they want, but like some of the other shows that disappear, I believe it has to do with whether or not you’re a liberal. Too bad, sooo sad.

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Darryl June 21, 2013 at 12:16 am

I loved Shark too! I keep saying “Bring back Shark!” CBS, for some odd reason, keeping bringing back Rules of Engagement. Some of the shows the network chooses to keep and or bring back is sometimes puzzling. I did some research and Rules of Engagement was never a top 20 show…ranking #42 in its last full season. Huh?!! BRING BACK SHARK!!!

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maggie fleming May 31, 2013 at 8:45 pm

Shark was great, why did you not make season 3. We could use more Shark seasons. James Woods is the best. He is awesome. A natural. Please make another season, there is alot of trash on television, this man provides closure with the justice system, we don’t have alot of that. Thank you for your time.

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Laura May 29, 2013 at 9:34 pm

Loved Shark – great cast, especially James Woods and Billy Campbell but everyone was great! Terrific story line on each episode. Had to catch up and “binge watch” but sad that we just watched the last episode. I’m going to miss Woods’s humor. Please bring it back!!

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Erica Carpenter January 18, 2013 at 5:03 am

I loved everything bout Shark (James Wood) was the best…so my question is why would u do this to all his fans? So if u can’t put it back on CBS can u plz put it cable channel like TNT or USA. I’m sure u will get the rating u looking for.
P.s if it help my family had family night every week ut came on.

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Margaret Dessurne January 3, 2013 at 6:27 pm

I wholeheartedly agree with the previous comments. Why did cbs cancel SHARK it was different from the usual USA imports. Have purchased the first series dvd but am unable to find the second series.

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katrock72 October 16, 2012 at 4:16 am

ive just been on cbs website and asked for them to put shark back on in britain so we all should do it then maybe we could get it back on.please send them a message the more we all do it the bettter.

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katrock72 October 16, 2012 at 3:42 am

we all should do something about this on face book maybe to contact cbs or something as its wrong,they say not many young people didnt watch it and my 2 sons are under 20 and they loved it like i did,the show was different as there is to many of the same shows now like,csi,law and order and many more,i like the csi and law and order but they are all the same.BRING BACK JAMES WOODS IN SHARK.

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katrock72 October 16, 2012 at 3:30 am

i watched shark on fx channel,it was the best show ive seen and i watch all the america shows and i cant understand why they dont bring it back,just cause the ratings werent that good in america dosent mean us in birtain dont want to see it.why show the 2 seasons on fx and now channel 5 if they dont make it any more its cruel to give us a taste of it then take it away.

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Cherry October 5, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Bring back Shark a great programme

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shar UK September 22, 2012 at 7:17 am

BRING BACK SHARK.
why was such a slick show cancelled ???????????
james woods is fantastic as sebastian shark, ruthless with a conscience and prepared to do whatever is necessary to put the bad guys away.
well written and fast paced this USA import to britain will be missed. the only thing i would change is the blond assistant, can’t even remember her name, her monotone voice and her expressionless face drives me mad. but i can overlook this for such a great series.

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