Bubble Bustin’ Thursday – nets cancel shows

bubble burst

Networks pull plug on underperforming shows.

Ten shows axed; Supergirl changes networks

For the last several years, the major networks have made decisions on “bubble shows” on the Thursday and Friday before the upfronts – thus, “Bubble Bustin’ Thursday” and “Bubble Bustin’ Friday”.

These two days are brutal for the prime-time TV business; decisions are made on what pilots are picked up and what shows are canceled with a lot of jobs on the line.

And this year is no exception.

Thursday afternoon saw the first show axed, the ill-fated CSI: Cyber after two seasons (read my review here.)

And despite renewing all of their freshman shows for next season, CW did cut mid-season entry Containment.

But the biggest story of the day is the relocation of Supergirl from CBS to CW.

As speculated, Supergirl is moving as the producers are looking to cut costs. With the network move, CBS gives up its stake in the series, with Warner Bros. gaining full production rights. Also, the show is expected to relocate to Vancouver from Los Angeles as showrunner Greg Berlanti already has several shows in production in the Canadian city – the most since Stephen J. Cannell did in his heyday.

With Supergirl heading off of CBS’ Monday night lineup, look for the network to reinstate comedies. When Supergirl was slotted on Monday nights, it marked the first time a drama lead off the night since 1985.

Meanwhile, ABC canceled five shows: Castle (after eight seasons); Nashville (after four); Agent Carter (after two), Gavalant (after two)and freshman entry The Muppets (a T Dog TV Hall Of Shame inductee.)

ABC also opted not to pick up Marvel’s Most Wanted, a spin-off of Agents of SHIELD – no surprise given its parent show continues to be a ratings, if not creative disappointment.

Over at Fox, the network plucked all of its freshman comedies: Grandfathered, Grinder, Barrett Cooper, and Bordertown, an animated series yours truly has never seen any network promotion of.

For every show getting canceled, there were several series pickups.

The news wasn’t all that bad for former Carter star Hayley Atwell as she gets to star in new drama Conviction from ABC. The network also picked up Pittsburgh-shot pilot Downward Dog, drama Time After Time from Dawson’s Creek producer Kevin Williamson, and comedy Notorious featuring Jenna Elfman. ABC renewed The Real O’Neals, The Catch, Dr. Ken, and American Crime for another season.

NBC gave a firm go to Dick Wolf’s fourth Chicago series, Chicago Justice to bow this fall. At this point, Wolf might became our town’s biggest employer. NBC also ordered drama This Is Us to series.

And CW picked up Riverdale to series; it’s an re-imaging of Archie and the gang’s hometown (and not the struggling south suburb of the same name.)



2 thoughts on “Bubble Bustin’ Thursday – nets cancel shows

    • One thing I have often wondered about: I know sometimes performers/writers/producers kinda know when they are stuck on a dying show. But for some of these borderline cases (e.g. “Nashville”); do these folks get any kind of advance word when a show didn’t make it? Or do they find out when -we- find out?

      • More often than not, the casts of these shows find out when the public does. There are numerous examples of this in the past – James Arness found out “Gunsmoke” was canceled reading the newspaper. I remember Christina Applegate saying she found out “Married…With Children” was canceled when she was driving, listening to the radio. Casts from other shows found out their shows were canceled while on vacation. There are endless stories.

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