Networks cancel shows ahead of new fall titles

Backlash against cancelling of highly rated show that featured outspoken conservative

Last Man Standing cast members Kaitlyn Dever

LOS ANGELES — As the major networks prepare for annual upfront presentations in New York next week, they’re sharpening their axes, canceling shows left and right to make room for new titles in the fall. The house-cleaning includes both freshmen series like Fox’s trio of newcomers — “Son of Zorn,” “Making History,” and “APB” — and bubble shows like “Sleepy Hollow.” The cancellation of veteran Tim Allen’s “Last Man Standing” on ABC has drawn criticism in conservative circles.Allen was an outspoken conservative in liberal Hollywood and recently told Jimmy Kimmel, “You gotta be real careful around here [Hollywood], you get beat up if you don’t believe what everybody believes. … It’s like [1930s] Germany.” The cancellation of Allen’s six-year-old comedy elicited Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to tweet: “Looks like @ABC is playing politics with your show despite decent ratings.” “Last Man Standing” was ABC’s second highest rated comedy this season, averaging 8.1 million viewers, behind “Modern Family,” with an average of 8.7 million viewers. Modern Family was renewed for two more seasons recently. Here is a look at more of the shows that will not be back next season:ABC Conviction — The series starring Hayley Atwell as a former first daughter blackmailed into heading a New York unit dedicated to examining suspected wrongful convictions wasn’t re-elected after its first season. American Crime — John Ridley’s prestige drama starring Felicity Huffman and Regina King had three critically acclaimed seasons, but the response from viewers didn’t hold sway. The Season 3 finale drew a mere 0.4 in the adults 18-49 demo. Imaginary Mary — After just one season on the air, Jenna Elfman’s sitcom was canceled after its ratings couldn’t compete with other ABC comedy series. Dr. Ken — ABC pulled the plug on “Dr. Ken,” the sitcom from “The Hangover” and “Community” actor Ken Jeong, after two seasons and declining ratings. Jeong also served as creator, writer and executive producer/director. The Catch — Like “Dr. Ken,” ABC dropped the Peter Krause and Mireille Enos-starrer after two seasons. The Shondaland caper averaged 4.6 million viewers this season. CBS 2 Broke Girls — The comedy, starring Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs as waitresses, has been canceled after six seasons at CBS. The series posted solid ratings throughout its run. Season 6 averaged a 1.3 rating in adults 18-49 and 5.6 million viewers per episode, airing mostly on Monday nights. The Great Indoors — The Joel McHale and Christopher Mintz-Plasse sitcom averaged a 1.4 rating and 6.9 million viewers per episode, but was still pulled despite being one of the network’s highest-rated comedies. Doubt — In possibly the most ruthless cancellation of the season, “Doubt,” a courtroom drama starring Katherine Heigl and Dule Hill, was booted after only two episodes aired. The second episode of the drama shed almost half of the total viewership of its lead-in, “Criminal Minds.” Pure Genius — The medical drama starring Dermot Mulroney was forced to end its run after one season. The series averaged only a 0.9 Nielsen live-plus-same-day rating among adults 18-49 over four episodes. Fox Sleepy Hollow — After developing a loyal fanbase, “Sleepy Hollow,” starring Tom Mison as Ichabod Crane, was canceled after four seasons. The supernatural drama saw its ratings drop sharply in Season 4, averaging a 0.5 rating in the 18-49 demo and 1.9 million total viewers — down 40 percent in the demo and and 37 percent in viewers from the previous season. Rosewood — The police procedural drama, centered around a Miami pathologist played by Morris Chestnut, was axed after two seasons. The show originally aired on Wednesdays as the lead-in to “Empire.” The ratings quickly plummeted when it moved to Thursdays and then Fridays this season. It closed out Season 2 down more than 50 percent in the key demo and nearly 40 percent in total viewers compared to its first season. Pitch — The baseball drama about the fictional first female MLB player failed to find an audience and struck out after a single season. Despite early buzz, the show averaged a 0.8 live-plus-same-day Nielsen rating in the 18-49 demo and 3 million total viewers per episode. The cancellation, however, offers good news for “Riverdale” — Mark Consuelos will be able to resume his role as Veronica Lodge’s father, Hiram.APB — By the time freshman drama “APB” wrapped Season 1, the series averaged only a 0.8 rating in adults 18-49 and 3.4 million viewers. NBC Emerald City — The Oz-based show starring Adria Arjona as Dorothy Gale reached the end of the yellow brick road after one season. Its ratings slowly plummeted with each additional episode. Powerless — The DC Comics Universe show exploring the lives of citizens attempting to protect themselves from superhero-induced catastrophes had its last three episodes pulled after consistently low ratings. The Blacklist: Redemption — The crime thriller spinoff of “The Blacklist,” starring Famke Janssen, was canceled after just one season. The show drew middling ratings, averaging a 0.8 in the 18-49 demo, according to Nielsen live-plus-same-day numbers.WGN America Outsiders — Marking WGN America’s third attempt as original programming, “Outsiders” was canceled after two seasons, just one season less than the network’s longest-running original program.USA Network Eyewitness — Based on a Norwegian television series, the show centered around the relationship between two boys after they witness a triple homicide. Despite the presence of “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” veteran Julianne Nicholson, the series couldn’t find an audience over its first 10 episodes. The Disney Channel Girl Meets World — The spinoff of the hit Disney channel show “Boy Meets World” got the hammer after three seasons. SyfyIncorporated — The Ben Affleck and Matt Damon-backed dystopian drama, which depicted a world controlled be multinational corporations, was axed after one season. It averaged a live-plus-same-day audience of just under 500,000 and a 0.16 in the 18-49 demographic. Cinemax The Knick — Cinemax pulled the plug on the acclaimed Steven Soderbergh drama after two seasons. FXX Man Seeking Woman — The comedy starring Jay Baruchel and Eric Andre, and created by Simon Rich ended its search after three seasons, by the end unable to retain even half of lead-in “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s” audience.