ABC has canceled new comedy series Downward Dog six episodes into its eight-episode first season. Co-creators Samm Hodges and Michael Killen just shared the news via Twitter. In the note to fans (read it below), they stress that the reasons for the cancellation were strictly financial and that they are “committed to finding a new home.”
ABC was faced with making a renewal decision on Downward Dog, from Legendary TV and ABC TV Studios, as the options on the cast were to expire next week. Downward Dog, which became the first broadcast comedy series to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, had been relatively steady in the ratings though it slipped to series lows of 3.1 million viewers and a 0.6 adults 18-49 rating (Live+same day) this week, which didn’t help its cause.
After a better-than-expected debut on Wednesday (1.1 in 18-49 L+SD), the quirky single-camera comedy starring Allison Tolman was sent to Tuesdays where it airs with no support as the sole original on the night at 8 PM against the biggest series of the summer, NBC’s America’s Got Talent. But the show quickly developed a core loyal audience, drawing a 0.7 L+SD ratings for the previous three weeks. Downward Dog also has been getting traction on social media, something Hodges and Killen noted in their post.
But in the end, the show proved too expensive to produce (the single-camera comedy films in Pittsburgh) for a summer run, and scheduling it in-season was virtually impossible because ABC’s comedy deck is stacked with seven returning series that have full-season orders. There is only one new half-hour series slated to debut in the fall, The Mayor, with two more, Alex, Inc., and Splitting Up Together, on tap for midseason.
Downward Dog‘s two-part season/series finale will air this coming Tuesday, June 27. The other new ABC series to launch in off-season is drama Still Star-Crossed, which was just downgraded to Saturdays, signaling a certain cancellation.