Category Archives: LATEST Renewals and Cancellations

Renewal and Cancellation Wrap: Winners and Losers Renewed!

Seven’s new drama series Winners and Losers has today been renewed by Channel Seven for a second season!

While not exactly my cup of tea, it is great to see a network putting so much faith in Australian drama.

Its ratings have not quite been up there with the 1.8 million of Packed to the Rafters, but an average of 1.36 million viewers per episode is definitely nothing to sneeze at. In terms of being a TV show, those are great numbers, and in terms of being an Australian drama, those are fantastic numbers.

The press release today states:

From Seven’s in-house drama team of John Holmes and creator Bevan Lee, Winners & Losers
follows the lives of four friends navigating their way through everyday life after winning the lottery.
The current debut season has won legions of fans around the country, with an average audience of
1.36 million viewers tuning in each week.
Winners & Losers stars Melissa Bergland, Virginia Gay, Zoe Tuckwell-Smith and Melanie Vallejo,
with a supporting cast including Blair McDonough, Tom Wren, Damien Bodie, Stephen Phillips and
beloved comedienne Denise Scott.
Pre-production for the second series is commencing in Melbourne, with all the leading cast members
set to return.
Creator Bevan Lee said:
“I’m delighted we are able to continue exploring the lives of Bec, Frances, Jenny and Sophie in a
second series, thanks to the audience embracing our show so enthusiastically.”
“And with the Season One finale set to turn the girls’ world upside down, I’m sure viewers will be
eager to see whether the girls’ new relationships and challenges make winners of them – or losers.

If you are a fan of the show, are you as passionate about it as Packed to the Rafters? For people like me, who gave up on it after the first few episodes (it felt a bit uneven, and not compelling enough to keep watching), is it worth another shot?

Episode 15 of 22 will air tonight (Tuesday 8:30PM on Seven), with only 8 more episodes to go to run out the first season.

Advertisements

Nine Draws a Line after Three Weeks: Between the Lines Cancelled

So, this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, but Eddie McGuire’s latest show Between the Lines has been cancelled after only three weeks.

Ratings weren’t terrible with 696,000 in its first week, 610,000 in its second, then 510,000 viewers in its third. For a Thursday night, it would need at least 700,000 to justify its presence.

It featured Mick Molloy and Ryan Fitzgerald, both Channel Ten personalities (lucky they didn’t sever that tie) who tried their best but unfortunately it wasn’t enough.

The show drew criticism for its blokey vibe (only one woman was allowed to be a guest per-week) which only perpetuated the “boys club” myth that many find repulsive. It also had an over-emphasis on AFL (McGuire, Molloy and Fitzgerald are all AFL media identities), which obviously didn’t have a great appeal to Sydney audiences.

However, it is a bit of a shame, as it is when any Aussie program bites the dust, and there were some decent laughs to be had on the show. Unfortunately, viewers have clearly tired of shows which try to replicate formulae of other shows (BTL was obviously a copy of Spicks and Specks, The Trophy Room, or any other show along those lines).

Even if it didn’t make an identical copy, the fact is that it wasn’t original enough, or at least it wasn’t entertaining enough to overcome that initial hurdle.

Just look at the example of My Kitchen Rules: it was obviously an attempt to replicate the winning formula of MasterChef- the drama of preparing dishes, the plating up, friendly yet critical judges, etc- yet it appeared to be a completely different show. For starters, it was set in people’s homes. The contestants also were able to critique each other’s dishes, which was somewhat of a novelty. Hence, it became a success in its own right, an remarks comparing it to MasterChef became minimal.

So hopefully the lesson learned from this should be that networks should focus on giving a new show a strong element of originality to avoid people judging it in comparison to their more successful counterparts.

Renewal and Cancellation Wrap: Jackie in, Tara out!

Today there’s two big stories when it comes to cult hit Showtime shows. It seems that overnight, they have flipped a coin; on one side Nurse Jackie, on the other, The United States of Tara. Both are in their Third season, both have strong female leads, and both have been well reviewed across their short lives as shows… But only one has been reviewed.

That show is Nurse Jackie, which will receive a fourth season.

This means that The United States of Tara has got the chop. You have to feel for Toni Collette, who has won praise (and awards) for her portrayal of Tara and her multiple personalities, however, hopefully it will open more doors for her in terms of movies.

I have watched both shows since season 1, yet gave up on Tara a couple of episodes into the second season- maybe it was just me, but I felt like the first season had already explored all the facets of the novelty of having multiple personalities, so I’d be happy to hear if you thought differently.

The overall arc of Nurse Jackie interested me more, though it has received slightly worse reviews than Tara for refusing to follow on from the shocking season 2 finale (Ie. Jackie covered over her drug-taking tracks and everything went back to normal).

Renewal and Cancellation Wrap: May 11

Well, the axe has certainly been a-swinging down at FoxLand.

After a fairly hefty block of renewals over the past week (Family Guy, The Cleveland Show, House), there have been four fresh cancellations. One of which was a mercy killing, three others were not unexpected and the other coming as somewhat of a surprise.

The shows, in order of predictability are Human Target, Traffic Light, Breaking In, Lie to Me and The Chicago Code.

Human Target was struggling in the ratings and was never a hit critically.

Traffic Light was an interesting case in the way that people could instantly see right through it. It was yet another relationship comedy about x number of couples. That was pretty much it. However, it did try to eschew the typical hammy sitcom tropes by filming it in the style of The Office, or more specifically, Modern Family (in the way that there seems to be a documentary being filmed, however, it is never remotely acknowledged). It was never panned, yet no-one ever raved about it.

There was a similar situation with Breaking In, in that it wasn’t terrible, yet simply didn’t do enough to capture anyone’s attention. Christian Slater can also chalk up another ‘miss’ on his… chalkboard. It also seemed a bit too “high-concept” for a comedy- it was about a crack team of professionals “Breaking In” to places to test their security. Even though it was a somewhat bizarre concept, at least it was original. But no-one could really see it going for six seasons.

Another “high-concept” idea was probably the death of Lie to Me as well, which was also axed. It lasted for three seasons and didn’t seem to form any permanent connection with viewers. Essentially, it was the poor-man’s House, and Cal Lightman came off as cold, without the accompanying endearing wit and flaws of Gregory House.

The Chicago Code had a lot of potential, if nothing else for the fact that it was created by Shawn Ryan (creator of The Shield), and there will be a small amount of outrage, yet it will probably blow over. Next!

Renewal and Cancellation Wrap

Aaaand now for a quick wrap-up of this week’s Renewals, and they all have two things in common (I’m betting that they have more); they’re all on Fox and they’re all popular shows, so you could say that it doesn’t come as much of a surprise that;

House has been renewed for an EIGHTH SEASON, which is simply great news. Yes, it may have gone off the boil in the past two or three seasons (as well as dabbling in all manner of shark-jump police-worthy violations, such as dream sequences, the original team split up, “Huddy” finally happening, etc.), and has never quite recovered its original magic. But it can’t be denied that Hugh Laurie is one of the most talented and engaging actors on the small screen at the moment, and his eponymous character plays arguably one of the greatest of all time.

Also, the show continues to defy formula, something which endeared the show to viewers. And let’s face it, the show deserves a decent, well thought-out ending. Whether this ending occurs in the eighth season remains to be seen, however, ratings are still fairly strong, which could well guarantee another season or two.

Family Guy will get a TENTH SEASON, which is really quite astonishing given the fact that Fox cancelled it some time ago. The show could well go the way of the Simpsons too, given its popularity among the younger demographic.

The Cleveland Show will also get a FOURTH SEASON, which was to be expected, given its strong ratings. This rounds out the mighty triumvirate of Seth MacFarlane animated comedies that have been renewed, with American Dad having been renewed earlier.

Australian Perspective: This is great news for Ten with House, which continues to, well, fill a hole in its schedule. It isn’t the ratings powerhouse it once was but Ten still need it. Ten’s multichannel Eleven will also be nicely stocked with fresh new eps of ‘Cleveland’, Bob’s Burgers (previously renewed), Futurama and The Simpsons.

Family Guy’s renewal is also good news for Seven and its multichannel, 7Mate.

A Third Season for The Ricky Gervais Show

Ricky Gervais himself today mentioned on his blog that the show “starring” himself, Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington had been renewed by HBO for a THIRD SEASON.

“Oh and by the way HBO just told me they are commissioning a 3rd season of The Ricky Gervais Show.”

The show has received mixed reactions, with many fans of the podcasts in which Karl Pilkington rose to fame stating that the show offers nothing new in terms of content, and adding animation is merely a lazy way to milk the podcast and Pilkington for all they are worth.

But its undeniable that people are watching it, and it is a way to enlighten more people of the ways of the Round-headed one. And the podcasts are extremely funny, so consequently the show is, but it is unnecessary viewing for fans.

Gervais has also been making mention of the fact that it will be the first third season of a show he has done, with Extras and The Office only running for two seasons. However, I doubt many will look back and remember it as part of the Gervais/Merchant oeuvre, as it hasn’t had the same meticulous intervention as by the two as Extras and The Office did.

The first season of the show has aired in Australia on SBS ONE, while the second is currently airing in the US.

Check out the updated Renewal and Cancellation Wrap for HBO.

HBO Renewal and Cancellation Wrap

 

 

Angry Boys

Hands down the most anticipated Australian comedy of recent times, given Chris Lilley’s impeccable record of We Can Be Heroes and Summer Heights High. It remains to be seen if it will be received as well in the US as Summer Heights High was. However, given its inclusion of an American character, it will certainly improve its prospects.

Game of Thrones

Boardwalk Empire

A SECOND season will hit US screens later in 2011.

Hung

Somewhat of a surprise renewal. A THIRD season of 10 eps will be coming later in 2011 (around June, possibly).

Bored to Death

A THIRD season coming later in 2011.

How to Make it in America

SECOND season to come in 2011.

Treme

Its SECOND season starts April 24, 2011.

True Blood

A FOURTH season to come on July 12, 2011.

The Ricky Gervais Show

Funny or Die Presents

Big Love

Entourage

Flight of the Conchords (Ended)

In Treatment

The Life & Times of Tim

Little Britain USA


Cancellation and Renewal Wrap: Wednesday 30th March

It’s only good news today – in the way that a trio critically acclaimed shows have received renewals. Here they are;

RENEWED

Mad Men

After months of deliberation over licensing, etc. (I believe that’s what executives are calling it) AMC has finally given official word that the critical darling will receive a FIFTH SEASON. The only bad news is that it won’t screen until 2012. But that’s better than it not screening at all, isn’t it, MM fans? And at least you’ll be able to get some sleep at night now.

Justified

Another show garnering extremely positive press, thanks in part to it’s lead Timothy Olyphant, has also received another season commission, this time by the FX network. This will be its THIRD SEASON (it is in the latter half of its second season currently).

Archer

Speaking of FX, it has also has given animated spy comedy Archer a THIRD SEASON. While not as big show as the previous two, it has gained a devoted following. And, not speaking of clunky segues, now would be a good time for one of the commercial networks to pick up these shows. Especially since channels like Eleven are coming to the end of certain seasons (Californication, etc.).

Renewal and Cancellation Wrap: ABC (AU)

Note: In most cases, “Renewal” refers to a show being granted another season in 2012, or later in the year, depending on the show.

Rake

Second season to air in 2011.

At the Movies

Australian Story

Catalyst

Collectors

Compass

First Tuesday Book Club

Foreign Correspondent

Four Corners

Gardening Australia

Good Game

Insiders

Media Watch

Q & A

Adam Hills In Gordon St Tonight

This was a show that everyone knew would be good, but would it crank the ratings metre up to 11? Well, it hasn’t really, but it has been doing enough to guarantee it a second run (most likely in 2012).

Despite not hitting the heights of Spicks and Specks yet (somewhere near the 1m mark, it has been performing very well). Its ratings for episode 3 are nothing to be concerned about.

Update 12/03 – The past couple of weeks have really been promising, with the show demonstrating that it is firmly within the 700,000 range. If it could push into the 800,000s once again, you could almost brand it a hit.

Ratings:

Episode 1: 889,000

Episode 2: 802,00

Episode 3: 674,000

Episode 4: 760,000

Episode 5: 757,000



Sleek Geeks

Laid

While reviews have not been bad- most tend to remark that it is superbly acted, shot and written, yet lacks a certain spark, and is nowhere near a rib-tickiling comedy- ratings have certainly not been great. Its premiere figure was very respectable for a 9:30pm slot on ABC1, and if it were to maintain figures like that it would be given a second season immediately. However, more recent ratings haven’t been that flash. It is beginning to become clear that the show has a following of at least half a million, so if it didn’t slip beneath 400,000 at all, you could almost guarantee it a second.

However, if it did… you would start to worry.

Update 12/03: It is quite astonishing how loyal the Laid audience is. It is quite obvious that it has established a fanbase. This is good for the show’s prospects, don’t get me wrong, but the numbers aren’t spectacular. It would need to lift just a touch in its final episode- preferably into the 500,000s. If it were to drop significantly, it would be danger. However, if it rose, a decent case could be made for a second season.

Here have been its ratings thus far:

Episode 1: 608,000

Episode 2: 481,000

Episode 3: 478,000

Episode 4: 475,000

Episode 5: 473,000

Hungry Beast

It hasn’t yet had its third season premiere yet, but this show remains a toss of the coin as to its renewal prospects. It gets a lot of points because Andrew Denton’s production company is behind it, and it is also supporting new and innovative ideas from relative youngsters, but its ratings have disappointed in the past.

The Gruen Transfer

Ratings-wise, it speaks for itself, but how long can they keep the advertising deconstruction jig up? Surely there’s only so many tricks up advertisers’ sleeves…



Bed of Roses

Currently in its third and final season, the show has failed to win a fanatical following, and has simmered quietly on a Saturday night.

Can We Help

28/03/2011: Cancelled after six years on air.

Spicks and Specks (ENDED)

UPDATE: The ABC has announced that Spicks and Specks will wrap up at the end of 2011.

Previously 50/50

Coming into its sixth season in 2011, its seventh season is largely dependent on its host, Adam Hills. He is currently hosting Adam Hills In Gordon Street Tonight, and one would have to wonder if this will lead to bigger and better things for Hills. He obviously doesn’t want to move to a commercial network, yet I’m sure if the UK or the US came knocking, he couldn’t say no.

There is also a question lingering over the freshness of Spicks and Specks. In recent times, they have obviously tried to spice up the show by having “specials”, or themed shows, such as different decades or countries. However, one would have to wonder how long Hills will be able to read questions off of cards- there is, only so much that can be done to reinvent a format.

twentysomething

I am confident that this series, coming to ABC2 and starring Rove’s Jess Harris, will be everything Australian TV needs: just something that sets out to be funny.

Paper Giants: The Birth of Cleo

The Slap

Crownies

The Straits

Phryne Fisher

Top of the Lake

Angry Boys

Woodley

Sporting Nation

Outland

Lawrence Leung’s Unbelievable

Cancellation and Renewal Wrap: 28th March

Today some good news for fans of US behemoth shows… and some not so good news for fans of quaint little Aussie shows on the ABC.

RENEWED

CBS has renewed the Amazing Race for a whopping NINETEENTH SEASON. Since premiering in 2001 (with its current host, Phil Keoghan, who recently visited his home country of New Zealand after the Christchurch earthquake), it has spawned seven different versions- including one cancelled version (Central Europe) and of course, the upcoming Australian version, which is to be hosted by Grant Bowler. Here’s something about Erin McNaught’s boyf, who’s apparently on the show… And moving on…

CBS has also renewed Undercover Boss for a THIRD SEASON. This is good news for Ten, who like to use this as a hole-filler, especially after, say, episodes of Undercover Boss Australia run out (it was of course renewed for a second season itself).

CANCELLED

And in somewhat surprising news, the ABC has given Can We Help? the chop, according to a post on TV Tonight. It was never a ratings winner, but then again, shows that screen on Friday and (now) Saturday evenings never are. However, it wasn’t doing very much at all for six years, and was really quite a bland and uninspiring show. Peter Rowsthorn did his best (and was probably the show’s only drawcard in the end) but ABC’s treatment of it became a joke.

Its format in the studio made it somewhat watchable in my opinion, as at least there was some interaction between the hosts. Then there came a cutting of costs by the ABC and Rowsthorn was forced to throw to stories from the accounts department of the ABC (or something like that).

At least Rowsthorn has the Kath and Kim Filum lined up (most probably), where he might get to reprise his role as Brett Craig.