Surviving Suburbia: Is the ABC Sitcom Cancelled or Will It Be Back?

IMAGEThe alphabet network has pulled the Bob Saget sitcom after just four episodes. The show was attracting nearly 10 million viewers, so what’s the problem?

Surviving Suburbia centers around Steve and Annie Patterson (Bob Saget and Cynthia Stevenson), heads of a typical suburban family. But, unlike the idyllic sitcom dads of the past, Steve has a cynical view of everything around him. Others in the cast include Jared Kusnitz, G. Hannelius, Jere Burns, Dan Cortese, and Lorna Scott.

Originally slated to air on the CW, ABC picked up the sitcom for a midseason run. Suburbia debuted on April 6th to 12.16 million viewers and a 3.2/8 rating/share of the 18-49 demographic. The second installment slid to 11.25 million and a 3/7 in the demo. The most recent installment (on April 27th) hit a series low of 9.91 million and a 2.4/6 rating/share. While the decline certainly isn’t positive, the series still attracts more than many other shows on network TV. Why pull it?

Suburbia has the enviable fortune of airing out of the very popular Dancing with the Stars. Unfortunately, the sitcom doesn’t retain enough of that show’s audience. The most recent episode lost 50% of Stars’ viewership in both total viewers and the targeted demographic. That’s not good and ABC is likely convinced it can do better.

Should Suburbia get a second season?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

In fact, Suburbia was preempted this week and so Castle directly followed Stars. The schedule change helped give Castle a nice little bump in ratings.

As a result, the network has pulled Suburbia for the remainder of the May sweeps period but has said that the sitcom will return on Wednesday, May 27th. The show is still scheduled to conclude its first season on July 1st but, because of the scheduling changes, there will still be a couple episode left unaired. ABC may or may not air them at a later date.

Though Suburbia’s renewal is certainly still a possibility, this doesn’t bode well for the sitcom’s chances for a second year. ABC will announce its 2009 – 2010 schedule on May 19th. What do you think? Is it worth saving?

Canceled and renewed TV show

32 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Maria says

    ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!! Finally something funny to watch on ABC and they want to cancel it! How much reality tv can we watch? Surviving Suburbia is such a funny sitcom, The cast are great together. I love the kid who plays the son – he is a riot. PLEASE DON’T CANCEL THIS SHOW.

  2. Cheri says

    I love this program and would bill it the next new “Ozzie & Harriet” family program. I hope it’s renewed for sure.

  3. Paula K says

    Give it a chance. It is a really good show. I think it will catch on as soon as it is available every week. Did ABC really do it a favor by airing it after DWTS? They showed a few episodes and then have DWTS on again for 2 hours . I really was excited to watch Surviving Suburbia last night and terribly disappointed to find out it would not air. Frankly, i am really tired of the reality shows. A good old fashioned situation comedy is what I dream of. Surviving Suburbia, fits the bill.

  4. Megan says

    I love that show! It is one of my favorites and it would be a shame to let that show go! I hope ABC wont cancel it or i will have nothing to watch after DWTS. If the show wasn’t on yesterday then i am pretty sure i didn’t miss an episode but if it was then i did. =( ! I would hate for that show to go because it is super funny and everyone gets a laugh out of it! It has an all-star cast so i would hate for it to go off the air! PLEAE ABC DON’T CANCEL SURVING SURBIA!

  5. Brady says

    Would be a mistake if ABC cancels this show. I think the show has great potential and just needs to get through the first season. I hope to see it return.

    And…the young man who plays the son has great talent and is someone that could become another teen idol. Saw him in person while dining out. Was very kind and seemed like a level headed young man.

  6. Steven D says

    I really like it too. I missed seeing it tonight. I needed a good laugh. Just plain fun. I wish that ABC had given it a time slot that could have aired weekly instead of being continually bumped for season finales and premieres. I also want to point out that many of this years “funniest” sitcoms were criticized as last year’s worst. The cast is wonderful and I think the writing is funny. Remove the laugh track and I bet you hear yourself chuckling out loud. Too many cynical people out there who just don’t know how to relax and have a good time.

  7. Karen says

    This show is one of the few on air that actually make me laugh, if they cancel then what else is worth watching?! I think it just needs more time to gain exposure, if people get a chance to watch the show I am sure they would love it just as much as I do! Many shows struggle the first seaon while working out all the kinks like finding the right time-slot & obtaining an audience, just give it more time!

  8. Joe says

    What a disappointment if they cancel this show!!! There are so many factors that lead to the decline in ratings – a finale on NBC and a MOST IMPORTANTLY a lack of promotion on ABC’s part. They assumed that Bob Saget’s long term history with ABC shows and the coveted time slot following Dancing with the Stars would be enough. See what happens when you assume!!! If the audience was more prepared and knew that Bob’s character was totally different than Danny Tanner, the reviews would not have been so harsh!!! If it was promoted as… “wait til you see the difference in fatherhood”, the difference would have been expected with an anticipation!!! What a shame!!! And, what a waste of good talent — the kids are great!!! Especially the son — they should have marketed him to pull in the Teenie Bopper market. ABC missed the boat–let’s hope they don’t sink it!!!!

  9. Tom says

    Sorry, I didn’t laugh at all to this show. I didn’t find it funny, but more seriously, I found a real problem with the actors. Was it that they didn’t have enough time to rehearse, maybe bad direction!? I don’t know. I love Bob Sagat and Cynthia Stevenson but I really wish for their sakes that “One-vs-a-Hundred” and “Dead Like Me” would be resurrected!

  10. myopinion says

    I think Surviving Suburbia is a victim of poor judgement by the network in their decision not to air the pilot episode. I think sit coms are evolutionary. If you look back, say for example at Will and Grace, the original Jack and Karen characters no longer existed by the end of the show. As the actors grew more comfortable with the characters, they took them to a different level. There is no lack of talent in this show and I think given the chance, the next level is attainable. Writer Kevin Abbott is a gem and armed with this initial criticism and the fine talent, I believe the show will succeed. I went to a taping and saw the pilot before they shot the episode for the studio audience. I laughed out loud which is something I don’t often do. The episode I saw them tape is the one with the neighbor and the pill. I laughed through the taping and when I saw it on TV, laughed again. The kid who plays Henry is brilliant and so is the daughter. I believe the last rating dropped because it was up against Rules of Engagement season premiere. By the way… Rules was panned by critics in the first season but got a chance to build an audience and was picked up by its network for season 2. The audience will certainly loose out if you cancel this show.

Leave a Comment

Your comment may need approval from a moderator before it appears. We review comments to weed out spam, duplicate postings and personal attacks. We welcome constructive discussion.