Feature: The Chopping Block for 2013 (part one)


Nielsen ratings

As we look ahead to a brand new year, we take stock of our lives, our relationships and ourselves. Or at least people less obsessed with television than we here at TVRage do those things; we take stock of television shows.

When we consider the scripted series at the big four networks, each contingent has a couple of underperforming stragglers. They may be great shows, but for whatever reason their ratings are below what their network would like to see. These shows are on the cusp of getting cancelled--or they could be renewed in a show of faith of the quality of the programming therein.

These shows are the ones whose ratings have not garunteed them a home throughout 2013; this doesn't mean they will be cancelled, it means that their future is decidedly in peril. For each one, ask yourself: would you give this series another season or cut it from the air? Leave your answers below in the comments!



Whitney castNBC's comedy woes persisted throughout 2012, with 'Go On' being the only happy and healthy new sitcom to join the ranks of '30 Rock' and 'Parks and Recreation.' The three shows on the NBC chopping block for 2013 are all sitcoms and they each suffer from similar complaints from the critics.

'Whitney' seems to have lived its entire life on the proverbial chopping block, ever since its debut in September of 2011. No one was certain if the show would earn itself a second season, but here we are in medias.

The sitcom follows Whitney Cummings playing a fictionalized version of herself (ala 'Seinfeld,' although that's where the comparison must end). The Chicago-based series centers around Whitney's desire to prove her devotion to her supportive and endlessly-patient boyfriend, Alex (played by Chris D'Elia).

Even with this second gasp at life, 'Whitney' isn't drawing NBC-worthy numbers. What say you, audience? Cancel 'Whitney?'

Joining 'Whitney' on the NBC chopping block is a show from this season: 'Guys with Kids.' Premiering Guys with Kidsback in September, the series earned itself an upped-order, bringing the first season to a total of seventeen episodes.

That is where the good news ends, however. The ratings have failed to find a niche despite some favorable critical responses to the show. 'Guys with Kids' stems from a sketch comedy pitch from Jimmy Fallon about three buddies, their respective partners, and their children. That is essentially it. There wasn't a whole lot of meat on the bones of this series when it debuted and according to the ratings, it hasn't been fleshed out much further since.

So how about it? Axe 'Guys with Kids,' or let it see a second season?

Up All NightRounding out the NBC contingent is a strange case: 'Up All Night.' Premiering in September 2011, 'Up All Night' stars Christina Applegate and Will Arnett as new parents dealing with their newborn.

The strange aspect of the series is that, due to flagging ratings, 'Up All Night's third season will convert from a single-camera format (ala 'Arrested Development') to a traditional multi-camera sitcom format (ala 'Roseanne'). I cannot recall any series switching formats mid-run before--this is an odd experiment indeed.

Will it be enough to save the show? Keep 'Up All Night' or let it go?



CBS is no longer wringing their hands over what to do with their failing comedies--the network smartly CSI: NYtook the hatchet to the horrible 'Partners' shortly after the series debuted. But there are two dramatic series that haven't been pulling their weight in the ratings-war. Let's shift into drama with...

'CSI: NY.' Unlike the three NBC series in jeopardy (the oldest of which debuted in 2011), the New York City chapter of 'CSI: Crime Scene Investigation' is in the middle of its ninth season. I shouldn't have to tell you how exceptional that is for a dramatic television series.

So this adds a new wrinkle to our game: when we consider whether or not to take the axe to 'CSI: NY' we have to consider a decade of loyal viewership. While the show isn't putting up spectacular numbers, it isn't dropping either--those who watch it aren't giving up on it.

But on the other hand... nine years is a very long time. Maybe that's all the Detective Mac Taylor America is inclined to handle?

Keep 'CSI: NY' or drop the hammer before season ten?

Along with the veteran 'CSI: NY' is the exact opposite: a rookie that has been pulling up lame in the home stretch of the season.

'Vegas' is dropping numbers for CBS despite a very strong critical reception. The crime drama stars Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis, each on opposite sides of the law. 'Vegas' also has the added boon Vegasof being set in the 1960s and being based on an actual lawman, the former Sheriff of Clark County.

The problem isn't with the concept nor the actors, but 'Vegas' isn't finding itself a steady audience. Be it timeslot issues or any other number of factors, 'Vegas' finds itself on the cutting board as 2012 comes to a close. We'll be getting a full twenty-one episode season order, which is good as the early seasons seemed to place the plot on a slow sizzle rather than a series of hot flashes.

However, even from the onset our ace reviewer Joel Thomas noted that 'Vegas' wasn't quite hitting the mark.

Do you agree? Would you like to see a second season of 'Vegas' or let it go the way of the dodo?


That's NBC and CBS. Tomorrow, we'll outline the potential 2013 cancellations from FOX and ABC.

So? What's the word, TVRagers? Which shows would you keep, which would you discard like a bag of moldy tangerines?



- Guys With Kids
- Whitney (2011)
- Up All Night (2011)
- Vegas

Written by: bad_subject
Dec 27th, 2012, 7:39 pm


Message Posted On Mar 24th, 2013, 1:00 am
I and my family enjoy watching Whitney (although perhaps writing for Whitney, 2 Broke Girls and a third Whitney Cummings show is to blame for the show's stagnant storyline and waning humour). We also enjoy Guys With Kids and Vegas. It's a pity to see some of these more unique sitcoms fail due to various reasons (too many projects for writers, poor time slots, lack of advertising/campaigning from the network - I mean how many times have we seen networks advertise particular shows during slotted advertisement and then continue advertising other shows once the regular show resumes?) while they order more of the same (how many dancing, singing, housewives of wherever type shows do they need?) I was also sad to see another network cut Zero Hour after 3 episodes, only to replace it with RE-RUNS of housewives and that lame knock-off of the Japanese version, Wipe-Out.

Message Posted On Mar 7th, 2013, 4:29 am
whitney is the best comedy around with clever jokes and crazy characters, so its a tottal shame if get cancelled

Message Posted On Feb 21st, 2013, 3:52 pm
Vegas is a very entertaining program. My fiance and I both love Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis - we would really hate to see Vegas die an early death, unlike mobster Rizzo who needed to die a lot sooner, we both hated that SOB!!
D. Snyder

Message Posted On Feb 13th, 2013, 12:44 pm
We think VEGAS is a great series. We know the network execs are not in touch with the audience. My family and many of my friends have a hard time even starting to view a new broadcast tv series because of their cancellation happy ways. Whats the point.... They will cancel when we really get into the show.

Level 1 (36%)
Since: 17/Apr/12
Message Posted On Dec 30th, 2012, 3:42 pm

CBS may not have to make a decision on CSI:NY, as the decision may be made for them by its star, Gary Sinise.  We've been lucky to have the last two years (counting the current one); Gary was pretty sure he didn't want to return for the 2011 season.  The only reason he came back is because TPTB promised him an episode dealing with the 10 year anniversary of 9/11...Gary is a *huge* supporter of First Responders, and for those that don't remember, Mac Taylor's wife was a First Responder who lost her life on 9/11.  With that card played, there really isn't all that much to convince Gary to stay if he should again start thinking of leaving the show.  The show survived the loss of one of its main stars, Melina Kanakaredes, but I doubt it could survive the loss of Gary...his character is too central to the show.



Message Posted On Dec 29th, 2012, 11:26 pm
I love CSI NY! I hope it doesn't get canceled.

Level 1 (28%)
Since: 07/Nov/11
Message Posted On Dec 29th, 2012, 7:47 pm

Please keep  Vegas. Love the show. 

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