'Michael J Fox Show' Pulled: What Went Wrong For The New Comedy?
Fox's new comedy has been cancelled after just 15 episodes.
NBC has axed the remaining episodes of Michael J Fox's struggling Thursday night comedy, The Michael J Fox Show, which will be replaced by Hollywood Game Night. Fifteen of the comedy's 22-episode order have aired whilst production has wrapped on all 22 episodes, with NBC unclear where the remaining seven episodes will be broadcast, though the network will apparently look for a slot after the 3rd April, according to THR.
Michael J Fox's 'The Michael J Fox Show' Has Been Pulled Indefinitely Due To Low Ratings.
NBC picked up Fox's show with a straight-to-series order after a bidding war between multiple networks in August 2012. The outlook looked bright: the show would be the respected Back To The Future actor's return to television since his diagnosis with Parkinson's Disease. However, the show bombed in the ratings with an underwhelming 0.7 in the vital 18-49 category logged upon the 24th January episode airing.
NBC has yanked “The Michael J. Fox Show” after only 15 episodes pic.twitter.com/g8018YsKQP— FM96Ktown (@FM96Ktown) February 6, 2014
The show's failure seems to be attributed to more than just the difficult Thursday night comedy slot. "It's certainly what I hoped for [creatively] because I love the show but I would have hoped for a larger audience," NBC entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt said in December.
Watch The Official Trailer For 'The Michael J Fox Show':
"It's a function of all the things we were just talking about. I also think that there's a learning curve on any new show and I see every episode and it gets better and stronger and more assured of why those characters are funny. We just did an episode where Michael goes to Sochi to cover the Olympics, which is a really funny episode of television. It could air during the Olympics or right after. The show is doing what it should do, which is get better and better," the chair added.
It has been suggested that The Michael J Fox Show relied too heavily on its star cameos instead of interesting storylines that maintained viewers' attention. "The balance just seemed to be off," said TIME's James Poniewozik it had the '80s resonances of Fox being in an NBC sitcom, the general structure of a '90s family comedy, and the single-camera-confessional look of a contemporary show like Modern Family."
It Was Less The Actor, And More The Concept Of The Show.
Regardless of the show's conceptual failures, if anything was learned from The Michael J Fox Show, it was that Fox should definitely still be on TV. His brilliance came less from the 80s nostalgia and more from his comedic skills and prowess as an actor who, importantly, can laugh at himself which is what he'll have to do in the face of such disappointing news.