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Swingtown: CBS (Finally) Officially Cancels the 1970s TV Show

Grant Show in SwingtownAt the start of today’s television press tour session, CBS president Nina Tassler announced something that we’ve all known for months. Swingtown isn’t coming back for a second season.

Swingtown follows three Chicago families in 1970s era suburbia as they explore new freedoms and shifting moral values. The series stars performers like Molly Parker, Jack Davenport, Grant Show, Lana Parrilla, Josh Hopkins, Miriam Shor, Shanna Collins, Aaron Christian Howles, Brittany Robertson, Michael Rady, Nick Benson, and Kate Norby.

The series was initially scheduled to debut during the regular 2007-08 season but the premiere was delayed until Summer 2008. Critical and viewer reception for Swingtown was mixed and the pilot debuted to fewer than 8.6 million viewers and a 2.5/7 rating/share in the 18-49 demographic. Subsequent episodes’ ratings dropped from there. After seven episodes, CBS moved Swingtown to Friday nights where viewership plunged to a low of 2.82 million.

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Though the series’ ratings were too low to warrant a season two renewal on the network, the CBS studio tried to find another home for Swingtown. In the end, the best they could do was to make a deal with Bravo to rerun the first season. Execs for the cable net made it clear however that they weren’t interested in funding a second season.

In November, Show told TV Guide, “Yeah, unfortunately [it’s over]. I mean, they haven’t released me and they haven’t made any official statements yet, but our contracts are all up in December. They’d have to have us back working before then, and I don’t think it’s possible to do that.”

Tassler has long been an advocate for the series and initially gave Swingtown a greenlight. Today, she made the show’s fate official when she announced, “No, we’re not going back to Swingtown. We were extremely proud of the execution — [it] ended up on a half dozen top 10 lists in 2008.”

She continued, “At the end of the day the show was well executed, it was well received, the performances were great, the writing was great. It was a risk, we took it, and we’re proud of it.” The exec blamed the show’s performance, at least in part, to the writers strike.

Unfortunately, there’s been no talk of giving the series an ending of some kind. Does the show need one?

 

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{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

S.N May 29, 2009 at 1:18 pm

I am totally pissed off! CBS Shame on you! Just bc its different from todays society you cancel it! Ive been waiting all summer long for the second season. If it doesnt fit in to you cookie cutter mold of all your other tv shows its outta here, huh!? I hope it gets picked up on another station and they make big bucks!

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K.C May 20, 2009 at 1:51 pm

I have been looking forward to this great, fun, summer show and I am really upset to hear that it has been cancelled. What can we do to get this back?

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Karol May 20, 2009 at 10:18 am

Lets keep all the shows with murder and hate and take off the shows that have love and compassion in them. I loved the show and hate that it is off. They should make a movie.

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Heather Beaufait May 12, 2009 at 7:19 am

I am very disappointed to find that Swingtown is not coming back. I’m really going to miss what was one of the few really great adult shows on tv. I hope there is at least some wrap up. I want to know what happens next! RIP Swingtown – you will be missed!

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Jesse April 25, 2009 at 2:44 pm

CBS caused it to fail when it moved to Friday night…gee, Friday night during a summer run? does anyone watch anything on Friday night?
This was a well written, entertaining show, cast was fun, upbeat and it had a chance to gain the audience, but the big shots make decisions for us.

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natalie April 23, 2009 at 8:21 pm

I am so pissed that there wont be anymore swingtown!!!!! I just had to get a new dvr so I lost all my episodes!!!!! I am truly disappointed why not finish off csi since grissom is gone and put swingtown back in its thurs night spot! It sucks when the ‘BIG GUYS’ get to tell us what we like instead of asking us what we want to watch……so sad :(

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ddr April 17, 2009 at 7:17 pm

OMG…we are huge fans…you loose a cool show like this, but keep that stupid SURVIVOR crap that has gone on for 10 years too many….and now a bloody kill ‘em series Harpers Island that we would never watch…BRING BACK SWINGTOWN!!!…maybe HBO should buy it…then it could be racier…

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Dj April 13, 2009 at 10:58 am

Wow, I’m hugely disappointed that Swingtown got canceled. CBS just got blocked on our TV. It was the one thing my wife and I genuinely enjoyed watching together and we looked forward to it. I guess a well written/acted, intelligent show isn’t what CBS is looking for.

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Nancy April 7, 2009 at 5:14 pm

I LOVED Swingtown! It was a realistic and enjoyable show and I hate to see it go. As usual, the so-called moral majority wins again. I’m sick to death of reality TV and all the childish game shows that have taken over. Bring back Swingtown! It was one of the best things to come from CBS in a long time.

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Kim March 27, 2009 at 8:44 pm

I am so sad this show is gone. My husband and I looked so forward to Friday nights to get our swingtown fix. PLEASE GIVE US SWINGTOWN BACK!!

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Jennifer and Scott March 24, 2009 at 6:44 pm

cancelling this show was ridiculous!!! if it wasnt for the bold and the beautiful and cold case, i would never watch this channel. even csi sucks bad now. they need to bring swingtown back. thats stupid to just leave a series hanging on the last show like that with no indication that it wasnt coming back on. we’ve been sitting around waiting on it and watching every week to come on. way to go cbs

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Mary March 23, 2009 at 11:50 am

I think that the people at cbs are stupid!!!!! They cancel a show like swingtown, and keep a show like Survivor. Come on enough is enough, you can only watch survivor so many times before you get tired of it. I won’t even watch CBS any more, not like they really care!!!!!!! Swingtown was a very funny show and to leave it as a cliff hanger like it is coming back on, THAT IS JUST WRONG, CBS YOU SUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Ellen March 19, 2009 at 8:54 pm

Really CBS, think about getting this show back into production asap, if that’s even feasible now. I’m not kidding.

I am considering BOYCOTTING the network entirely (EVEN How I Met Your Mother, which I really like a lot) if this show isn’t given another chance. I don’t care if you keep it on broadcast or shift it to cable as originally intended. But no movies just to tie up story lines, and no more bs half seasons.

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Ellen March 19, 2009 at 8:47 pm

Seriously. How can you ax Swingtown and keep The Unit? That show is weird.

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Ellen March 19, 2009 at 8:44 pm

Oh yeah. Watchdog groups can S my D.

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