It won’t be official until later today, but it’s pretty clear that CBS will not be bringing Jericho back for a second season:
The bubble burst for a number of shows Tuesday as CBS, Fox and the CW handed out a slew of renewal and cancellation notices.
CBS nuked “Jericho,” dismissed “The Class” and closed the book on “Close to Home.” The Eye did hand out some good news, however, picking up “The Amazing Race” for one additional cycle.
“Jericho” had generated decent buzz for the net and emerged last fall as one of the year’s few frosh with any heat. But ratings never recovered from a protracted winter hiatus, and CBS apparently decided it needs to focus on promoting a slate of risky new shows rather than devote resources to relaunching “Jericho.”
In other words, because CBS decided to go with a ratings-risky winter hiatus strategy a la Lost, a show that, while not perfect was certainly showing a lot of promise (especially when it returned in February) is no more. There is, I suppose, some hope that it might get picked up elsewhere, but after reading this, that seems unlikely:
CBS isn’t talking, but reliable sources say that the Eye net has dropped the C-bomb on Jericho.
Those same sources are telling me that the show’s exec producer Carol Barbee is thisclose to a deal to join one of CBS’ new fall pilots as showrunner.
I’ve still got the last two episodes of the
season series left to watch on TiVo, but now I’m not sure what the point is.
Update: And now, according to CNN it’s official:
NEW YORK (AP) — CBS canceled the nuclear apocalypse drama, “Jericho,” on Wednesday, another sign that television networks are shying away from serial dramas after overloading on them last season.
The network unveiled a fall schedule with five new shows, three of them dramas.
“Jericho” started out strong last fall for CBS. However, like “Lost” on ABC and “Heroes” on NBC, many viewers abandoned the show after it went on a long midseason hiatus.
“We lost a lot of steam,” said Kelly Kahl, CBS’ chief scheduling executive. “I know we had loyal viewers … but the show sort of lost its engine and wasn’t performing.”
Gee, could one of those reasons be because you took off the air for three months ? It’s sad that the reason that this show, which had a promising premise, is gone is because of CBS’s scheduling games.
James Young puts in nicely:
That Jericho is cancelled while the likes of American Idol, Survivor, and America?s Bingo Night are on the air is a true tragedy. Evidence (along with rap and hip-hop) that those who say that America is in decline are right.
To that list I’d add The Apprentice.
Update # 2: And what is CBS replacing Jericho with in the lineup ? Another stupid reality show:
CBS is ready to unleash a reality take on “Lord of the Flies,” quietly wrapping filming on a new skein in which a group of 8- to 15-year-olds will create their own society.
Tom Forman, showrunner on “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” is behind the 13-episode project, tentatively titled “Kid Nation.”
Eye is expected to unveil the show Wednesday at its upfront presentation. It’s unclear if “Kids’ Nation” will land on the fall sked, but it wouldn’t be surprising if it did.
Project was originally pegged for a summer debut but was held for the 2007-08 season after CBS execs became excited about its breakout potential. Eye’s other reality staples — “Survivor” and “Amazing Race” — have been greenlit for two cycles and one cycle, respectively.
CBS reality guru Ghen Maynard has been feverishly working on nearly two dozen unscripted concepts for the Eye and cousin net the CW.
With “Survivor” and “Amazing Race” both aging, execs at CBS have made finding the next big reality hit a huge priority. Effort begins in earnest later this month with “Pirate Master,” premiering on the same date “Survivor” originally bowed.
As for “Kid Nation,” skein will follow 40 kids for 40 days, observing them as they attempt to build a new society from scratch.
H/T: Brendan Loy