The FOX sitcom ‘Til Death beat the odds and survived for three seasons. Has the TV show’s luck finally run out?
‘Til Death debuted on September 7, 2006. The sitcom stars Brad Garrett and Joely Fisher as Eddie and Joy Stark, a couple whose 20+ year marriage has grown stale and bitter. In contrast, their recently married neighbors, the Woodcocks (played by Eddie Kaye Thomas and Kat Foster), are still enjoying newlywed euphoria. For season three of Til Death, the Woodcocks were sent packing and were replaced by Kenny (J.B. Smoove), a divorced friend of Eddie’s who helps to pull him down all the wrong paths.
In its first season, ‘Til Death averaged 7.1 million viewers and ranked #82 on the season’s list of primetime shows. In year two, viewership dropped and averaged a viewership of only 6.1 million.
Despite the sinking numbers, FOX renewed the series for a third season and ordered 13 episodes. Four season two episodes were held over due to the writers strike. Unfortunately, the numbers for season three have been worse than the previous year’s. This season’s episodes have averaged only 4.54 million. The freshman comedy Do Not Disturb drew similar numbers and was cancelled after just three episodes aired.
FOX has pulled ‘Til Death from primetime for the foreseeable future. With such dismal numbers, it comes as no surprise that the sitcom is absent from the schedule for the November sweeps period. Repeats of House will fill the timeslot for at least the next several weeks.
Of the 17 season three episodes, only seven have aired. The network may leave the remaining 10 on the shelf indefinitely but will more likely air them at some point in the future, possibly to fill in half-hour gaps around American Idol. Either way, based on the numbers, it looks like ‘Til Death is a lame duck with no chance for a fourth year. Stay tuned!