It looks like Fox has officially pulled the plug on sketch comedy series In The Flow With Affion Crockett after a low-rated summer run. The project, executive produced by Jamie Foxx, was picked up straight-to-series and originally slated for midseason. It was pushed a couple of times until it finally launched in mid-August, drawing a 1.0-1.2 demo rating for its first season. The move comes a couple of days after Fox closed a deal to bring back its signature 1990s sketch comedy series In Living Color.
The CW is pulling new reality show H8R off the schedule effective immediately. Starting next week, the network will air repeats of new drama Ringer in H8R‘s Wednesday 8 PM slot. The demise of H8R extends the CW’s dry spell on the unscripted side, where the network has not been able to launch a successful series. (America’s Next Top Model started off on UPN.) The CW will use the slot to get additional sampling for Ringer, which the network’s brass like creatively and are getting behind despite recent ratings decline. This has become a trend this fall as NBC too replaced its recently canceled shows with reruns of freshman series in need of extra sampling: Prime Suspect (in for The Playboy Club) and Whitney (in for Free Agents). After perking up last week with the episode featuring Kim Kardashian, which hit a series high in total viewers and posted 50% gains in the demos, H8R returned to its middling ways last night (1.2 million viewers, 0.4/1 in 18-49), down 21% in total viewers and 33% in 18-49. The series features celebrities who get to confront their biggest haters.
PREVIOUS: The inevitable happened this morning after another poor showing from NBC’s freshman comedy. Free Agents averaged a paltry 1.0 rating in 18-49 and 3.3 million viewers last night. The underperforming new comedy got a stay of execution last week, when it also posted a 1.0 demo rating, for one more shot at improving — but that didn’t happen. There is no final decision yet what NBC will put in the Wednesday 8:30 PM slot, but reruns of new comedy Whitney are a strong possibility. NBC’s boss Bob Greenblatt earlier this week replaced canceled The Playboy Club with repeats of new drama Prime Suspect for additional sampling. I won’t be surprised if Whitney eventually migrates to Wednesday with originals while 30 Rock rejoins NBC’s Thursday lineup. Production on Free Agents was stopped right away. As one commenter noted, “They canceled the show in the middle of an episode and in the middle of a work day. Actors were just called to not come to set today. Harsh.” Based on the British series of the same name, Free Agents starred Hank Azaria and Kathryn Hahn as co-workers who start sleeping together. Azaria started the season with two series on the air, Free Agents and The Simpsons. With Free Agents just cancelled …
Second Time No Charm For ‘Playboy Club’ ‘Charlie’s Angels’ & ‘Prime Suspect’: What Went Wrong?
UPDATED: NBC is giving new comedy series Up All Night and Whitney a major vote of confidence with early full-season pickups. Meanwhile, as we indicated in the ratings story earlier this morning, low-rated new drama The Playboy Club has become the first new series to be canceled this fall. The 1960s drama is being pulled from the schedule effective immediately and will be replaced by Brian Williams’ new primetime newsmagazine, Rock Center With Brian Williams, which will premiere October 31. For the next three weeks, NBC will air repeats of its other struggling new drama, the well-received Prime Suspect, in the Monday 10 PM hour for additional sampling, while keeping originals on Thursday. “We made comedy an important goal for us this season and I’m very pleased to be making full-season commitments to both Whitney and Up All Night,” NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt said. “We’re thrilled with the creative direction of both shows as well as the potential for them to continue to build loyal audiences over the coming months.”
While not breakout hits of the size of Fox’s New Girl or CBS’ 2 Broke Girls, Up All Night and Whitney have been solid in their first couple of weeks, especially compared to the performance of NBC’s new drama series. The pickup of Whitney, which will be joined shortly by a full-season order for 2 Broke Girls at CBS, will give Whitney Cummings, who created and stars in Whitney and co-created 2 Broke Girls, two successful new shows this fall. As for Playboy, the series was expected to get the ax last week after its low-rated premiere was followed by a Week 2 decline, but Greenblatt gave the period drama another shot. Unfortunately, the series dropped again last night to a 1.2 demo rating despite its lead-in actually improving a bit.