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The Listener: Poor Reviews and Ratings; Cancel It or Keep It?

The ListenerNBC recently debuted one of their new Summer shows, The Listener. With lots of negative reviews, how did the first episodes perform in the ratings? Is the show worth keeping or should the network listen to critics and cancel it?

The Listener is a Canadian drama that revolves around a young paramedic (Craig Olejnik) who has the ability to listen to people’s inner thoughts. He tries to help those in need while trying to figure out his own place in the world. Others in the cast include Ennis Esmer, Colm Feore, Lisa Marcos, Mylene Robic, Anthony Lemke, John Fleming, Lara jean Chorostecki, Arnold Pinnock, and Paulino Nunes.

The show has already run in several countries around the world and began airing in the US on June 4th. NBC aired the first episode at 9pm and it ranked in fourth place for the timeslot, attracting just 5.25 million viewers and a 1.5/4 rating/share in the 18-49 demographic. The 10pm episode garnered a few more viewers (5.34 million) but lost a bit in the demo (1.4/4).

Should The Listener be cancelled?

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Many critics crucified the series and even fellow NBC employee Greg Grunberg may not be crazy about it either. The actor, who plays a mindreader on Heroes, tweeted, “New ‘original’ NBC show about a guy who can hear thoughts… called, uh…The Listener? Uh, no wait, I know this. BRAIN FART!! Genius!!” On Tuesday, he retweeted a fan’s note that said, “wht is ths ‘The Listener’ crap. thr’s alrdy a show abt a mindreader on tv, its called heroes, & @greggrunberg is all we need.”

The peacock network can’t be pleased with Listener’s lackluster performance, even for a Summer series. If NBC was footing the bill exclusively, the show would certainly not be back for another season. But, because the network is simply purchasing the broadcast rights from Canada’s CTV, the show’s much less expensive for them. If CTV decides to produce another season, it might make some sense for NBC to pick it up.

What do you think? Is the show work watching or should it be cancelled already?


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{ 204 comments… read them below or add one }

emma January 24, 2010 at 3:17 am

Hi Chealse, I agree with you completely !!! this is the best show i ever seen !!!
I’m angry that they did not let us at least see the end of the first season!!!

What can you do to return the series?


Chealse November 21, 2009 at 10:09 pm

Im so mad! They could have at LEAST finished the first season, just because it got low ratings doesnt mean other people loved it! I was obsessed with this show but then they just flat out canceled it. Now I have to watch it on youtube or other websites, I hope they bring it back soon, fingers crossed for a second season. :)


kcq October 26, 2009 at 4:59 pm

I can’t believe they canceled this show!! I am so upset!! I also did not hear about the show until it was in danger of being canceled.
Well considering they got rid of medium which is doing great on CBS, I should n’t be surprised!! Please CBS take this up too!! It fits very well with medium and ghost whisperer!!


Amelia October 24, 2009 at 12:17 pm

I LOVE THIS SHOW… BEST SHOW EVER.. Ok its not even close to being the same as heroes I kinda like heroes but not near as much as I love the Listener, First off heroes is about tons of people with powers well the listener is about a normal world with this one family who has powers, This show is just awesome, I want to start a petition to keep this show going.. Its the first show I sat and watched and just could not stop.. Please don’t cancel it everything about the show is amazing, the cast is perfect oz is awesome and Toby is sweet and sexy.. I WANT MORE… SEASON 2 SEASON 2 SEASON 2 SEASON 2 PLEASE PLEASE


Anonymous October 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm

you definitely need to make more seasons. i loved that show


Cliff October 13, 2009 at 7:28 pm

Keep the listener and kill the ghost whisperer or CSI Miami (or both for that matter!) or hey Numbers is dumb-ass as well.


jess October 10, 2009 at 8:18 pm

this is one of the best tv shows on tv. there is no reason to cancle it.


nana October 6, 2009 at 3:09 pm

pleeeeeeeeeeeeez don’t canclle the show we need a new story instide of some silly series with bad stories that will have so many seasons ……….. paramedics are humens toom they are important peaple and they help in saving lives …… we had enough of these reality stupid shows .


Diane October 2, 2009 at 11:05 pm

Just when NBC comes up with a show that one can actually watch without tossing one’s dinner…………..they, in their wisdom, cancel it. Go figure. Not enough blood and guts? It actually has a story? Good reason for NBC to cancel it! Get another Conan O’Brien type show, or another mind wasting reality show going…………add it to the other 400 useless tries at entertainment. Or maybe we need another “dance” show……if that’s what that really is………..Give us a break, and give us some real entertainment for a change. Watching the Ed Sullivan show about now would be welcome!!!!!


bliss September 23, 2009 at 9:27 pm

my bf and i loved the listener. and its not like hereos because there’s the whole deal with finding his mom and his sister. at least finish the season or bring it to a conclusion!


mia September 22, 2009 at 9:35 pm

i also never saw any advertising for the listener i only heard about it through my boss and i had to go on hulu to watch it. i love the show!!!! I WANT MORE!!!!


Anonymous September 19, 2009 at 12:41 pm

Why do all the good shows have to end on a cliffhanger? Please bring back The Listener!


Stephanie September 18, 2009 at 3:19 pm

Please don’t cancel this show! I finally found one I looked forward to watching among all the newer, crappier shows! I LOVE this show!

Don’t cancel please!!!


Random person September 10, 2009 at 5:33 pm

I find it kinda annoying how new shows always get yanked off TV if they aren’t SUPER AMAZING!!!! in the first few episodes…
I mean, the show isn’t bad, and I really think television peoples should really give it a chance. Sigh.


Tim Drury September 9, 2009 at 12:33 am

I really get excited about a new show and yall just yank it off the air because a bunch of snooty people whom you have watching these shows have no taste. You ought to get some real people to watch these shows and give real opinions, and yes I would like to do this. Thank you for reading my note please take it to heart, because Listener is reall y a great show.


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