Each May fans anxiously wait to hear the fate of their favorite show. Especially those shows that are considered to be on the bubble. Maybe the ratings aren’t that high or as was the case with Last Man Standing, when it was on ABC, too expensive for the network.
Many people, fans and reporters alike, refresh Deadline or TVLine for the latest news. Slowly the news trickles in. Sometimes it’s good, yay another season of Fresh Off The Boat (Unless you’re Constance Wu). Other times it’s bad. RIP Murphy Brown, we loved you in the 90s.
Sometimes the news isn’t good or bad. Whiskey Cavalier falls into this category. While ABC canceled it, Warner Brothers (the producing studio) vowed to shop the popular show to other venues.
Twist To The Cancellation
When ABC picked up Whiskey Cavalier initially, it was trumpeted as the crown jewel in their primetime lineup. It was a splashy show that featured two of the most popular actors working. Scott Foley from Scandal, and Lauren Cohan from The Walking Dead. Add in Bill Lawrence as a producer on the show and all the ingredients come together.
Yet, the ratings were never strong. After a big push behind the Oscars, the numbers fell faster than reboots are pitched to network execs. Even with delayed viewing, there wasn’t much to incentive the Disney owned network to give the show a second season. ABC Entertainment President Karey Burke told reporters “It was a tough decision, it was the last decision we made.”
Warner Brothers felt there was more story to be told and wanted to watch the show take off in a big way.
Netflix and Spy
One of the early contenders to potentially pick up the series was Netflix. They had seen great success in bringing You over to their platform. The Lifetime reject saw an insurgent viewership and its popuarity go through the roof.
But as with any jealous ex, ABC stepped back into the negotiating ring. After the season finale of Whiskey Cavalier aired following a massively popular special on the alphabet network, the ratings nearly tripled. Maybe Burke was wrong when she said: “We thought we gave it very strong launch in spring. But we lost audience. We felt the biggest opportunity was to try something new. We looked for other time slots but did not see a real opportunity to grow.”
ABC and Warner Brothers are now negotiating once again. A second season of the show seems very likely, whether on network TV or on a streaming service. Take heart fans. Some of us will miss the adventures of the Murphy In The Morning gang because no one wants to pick up a rebooted classic sitcom.