The Philanthropist: Sinking Ratings; Keep It or Cancel It?

The PhilanthropistAnother of NBC’s new Summer series, The Philanthropist, got off to a moderately successful start in the ratings but has been losing steam quickly. Should NBC show some charity and keep it around or should they just cancel it already?

The Philanthropist tells the story of Teddy Rist (James Purefoy), a billionaire playboy who is haunted by the death of his only child. After rescuing a young boy from a hurricane, Rist begins using his wealth to help those in need. The show also features the talents of Jesse L. Martin, Neve Campbell, Michael K. Williams, Lindy Booth, Bonnie Henna, Dominique McElligott, and James Albrecht.

The drama premiered on June 24th and attracted an average of 7.41 million viewers and a 2/6 rating/share of the 18-49 demographic. For a Summer series, that looks like pretty decent performance on the surface but less so when you look at the specifics.

Should NBC cancel Philanthropist?

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The show lost 35% of the audience from the last half hour of the successful America’s Got Talent lead-in. What’s more, many viewers tuned out before the premiere of Philanthropist was over. That’s not a good sign and a sure indication that those viewers probably won’t be back the following week.

The second week, the Philanthropist ratings dropped significantly to 5.69 million viewers and a 1.4/4 rating/share in the demo. Week three fell further and by week four, Philanthropist fell to 4.28 million and a dismal 1.1/4. Last week’s viewer numbers perked up a little to 4.74 million but the all-important demo remained dismally the same.

With numbers like these, there’s not much hope that NBC will feel charitable and renew the series for a second year. On the positive side, with just three episodes left to air, the network will surely let the short season play out.

What do you think? Is the show worth saving or should NBC have cut their losses and cancelled it already?

Canceled and renewed TV show

236 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Robert Burns says

    Worth keeping. Someone at NBC had better take another look at this one, and bring it back, if for no other reason than that interest in practical philanthropy is now becoming a trend, led by Bill Gates himself. Other networks will capitalize on this growing interest and take the lead if NBC “drops the ball” on this one.

    Ignore at your ratings peril, NBC.


    • Robert Burns says

      As “proof” that this interest in practical philanthropy is growing, please note that recently a popular book was published called “HOW TO BECOME AN EVERYDAY PHILANTHROPIST”. This is a well-researched book, but as interest takes hold, it is probable that more and better written ones on this subject will soon follow by other authors.

      Again, an interest trend is forming, led by some pretty high-profile people.


  2. Lakinca says

    Yet another show I faithfully watched has been cancelled. Do I nned to jsust rent Movies? It seesm like any thought provoking and entertaining show gets a poor tiem slot and then dismissed. In it’s place another , cheap, stupid reality show. Give me a break. Entertain me. With good solid story lines and good solid acting.

  3. Mary Jane Wright says

    I also would love to see this show back on the air. It kept me on the edge of my seat whenever I watched it. It was exciting as well as educational with a different take on the life styles of the rich and famous. Flipping through the channels, I stumbled on the show one night, I couldn’t stop watching it and made a point of watching it every week since. It was a great show.

  4. Michael Rawls says

    I hope they keep the show. It is very intriguing and informative. I love the way everything relates to everyone. Not all TV shows delve into the many different cultures like The Philanthropist. It has action, drama, comedy and tragedy. I LOVE IT!!! PLEASE KEEP IT

  5. Penny says

    PLEASE bring back the Philanthropist…a really great show and the around the world scenery in the backgrounds is phenomenal. I LOVE THIS SHOW

  6. mattyignorant says

    This show exposed the world fer what it is, and it gave logical suggestions on reversing problems. It’s a great eye-opener and I can’t blame this on it being a bad show, there are just a lot of bad viewers. The only episode that was a little iffy fer me was when Teddy went to France, but I mean, it was still good.

    It’s a fresh show, but as far as it goes people want the thought invoking CSIs and seem to love their scientific inaccuracies. Anyways I’m all fer this show, it made tv enjoyable.

  7. Anonymous says

    I would also like to show my support for this show. I think it is a great example of how a show can also show corporate responsibility in helping the future for everyone improve. It makes me wonder why there hasn’t been a show like this before. I will truly miss it if it is gone for good. NBC’s programing in my opinion isn’t what it used to be but after finding out about this show on Hulu, I can say I’d happily give up other shows that I watch to watch this one. That’s just my two cents but as you can see I’m not the only one who feels this way.

  8. Jason says

    This is an amazing show, I am very sad to not see more of it, I would like to see this turn into a 4=5 season show that would be amazing

  9. Bryan & Theresa Bateman says

    We need a second season of The Philanthropist! It is a unique show with a great cast and a compelling story line. Perhaps if it was not buried in the summer it would have a better following – just don’t put it up against American Idol….

  10. Rj says

    It’s an excellent show! It has the perfect mix of comedy, action and relevant issues. They just need to push it a little more regarding the marketing of the show. I think word of mouth is slowly making it popular.

  11. B A says

    This is an excellent show, it’s relatively honest and reveals the world in a truthful light. Unlike so many other shows these days, please keep this show on the air. It’s worth keeping.

  12. Val says

    77% voted not to cancel…so what is wrong with NBC? I love The Philanthropist. The writing, directing, and acting on all parts is wonderful, exciting and thought provoking. NBC has also cancelled Southland. Last year ABC was cancelling great shows too and people must have quit watching as this year they are putting some decent shows on. So far they are not cancelling the ones I like and have only gotten ride of Defying Gravity. So is NBC pulling the same crap that ABC pulled last year? I am really sorry to see The Philanthropist go. It was a great show.

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