NBC Cancels AWAKE, ARE YOU THERE CHELSEA?, HARRY’S LAW, BEST FRIENDS FOREVER, and BENT

     May 11, 2012

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Though we’ve been reporting on a bunch of very exciting pick-ups over the past 24 hours (including Community and Parks and Recreation), NBC has given the axe to a few of its freshman series.  The most high profile cancellation is the Jason Isaacs-fronted drama Awake.  The show, from Lone Star creator Kyle Killen and Homeland’s Howard Gordon, got off to a great star with a stellar pilot, but quickly spiraled into boring procedural territory.  I found the premise—a man is living two realities, one in which his son survived a car crash and one in which his wife survived—to be incredibly promising, but for some reason producers decided to rely heavily on the procedural aspect of the show and inject an eyeball-rolling mythology.

Audiences weren’t buying it, and the ratings steadily declined over the ensuing weeks. Killen is undeniably talented, so hopefully he gets another shot next pilot season.  Hit the jump for news on other NBC cancellations.

kathy-bates-harrys-law-imageAdditionally, THR also reports that the network has given the axe to David E. Kelley’s legal drama Harry’s Law.  Starring Kathy Bates, the series is currently nearing the end of a 22-episode second season.  The ratings haven’t been terrible, but they’re not up to par with the kind of hour-long dramas that NBC used to enjoy during the heyday of ER and The West Wing.  Most likely, the decision was made to make way for some other promising new drama series.

Cancellation news regarding the other shows that NBC decided to nix (per TV Line) didn’t exactly come as a surprise either. Chelsea Handler’s unfunny comedy Are You There Chelsea? will be no more, and I’m fairly certain I’ve never seen a promo for the other two shows, Best Friends Forever and Bent, in my life.  For some reason, NBC decided to renew the truly awful comedy Whitney, so I guess the network hasn’t entirely given up their dream of remaining in fourth place forever. I can’t say I’m particularly upset at any of these cancellations, and I’m thrilled that Community and Parks and Rec are returning.

Be sure to check back next week during the upfronts, as all the networks will be unveiling their fall schedules and announcing what new shows will be filling the void left by the aforementioned dearly departed series.

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