NBC has renewed The Carmichael Show for a second season, while opting against a second season of Mr. Robinson. This is the second consecutive summer the network has launched new comedy series, both times leading to a renewal, following last year’s pickup if Undateable.
Both Mr. Robinson and Carmichael have been decent ratings performers, but Carmichael has been better received by critics, drawing parallels to All In The Family with its social commentary and take on such hot-button issues as race and religion. According to NBC, The 9 PM edition of The Carmichael Show (1.1 rating in 18-49, 4.7 million viewers in Live+Same Day) was the most-watched summer comedy on the Big 4 networks in eight years and tied for the No. 1 summer comedy over that span in adults 18-49. (Carmichael, created by and starring Jerrod Carmichael, also posted a Week 2 ratings increase, while Mr. Robinson slid after an encouraging debut.)
“We’re extremely proud of The Carmichael Show, and Jerrod’s voice and point of view is a breath of fresh air in a comedy series,” said Jennifer Salke, President of NBC Entertainment. “This show made a big impact with viewers and critics because it’s funny and relatable but also because it’s fearless about discussing issues that are significant in the world today.”
Both Carmichael Show and Mr. Robinson took a long road to the screen. NBC originally ordered a presentation starring Carmichael in 2014. It didn’t make the cut but came in stronger than anyone expected, and after some redevelopment, last summer NBC ordered a full-blown pilot, which led to a series pickup. Originally developed and piloted by NBC sibling Universal TV, the comedy became a co-production with 20th TV, which became the leading studio, when Danielle Sanchez-Witzel, under a deal at 20th TV, came on board as a showrunner of the the series.
Mr. Robinson, starring The Office alum Craig Robinson, was originally picked up to pilot in 2013 with Greg Daniels executive producing. A year later, the project was ordered to series with a new creative team, Mark Cullen and Rob Cullen, while Daniels, the original pilot’s writer, Owen Ellickson, as well as Gabe Miller and Jonathan Green, who helped rewrite the pilot script, departing. The school comedy was redeveloped and largely recast, except for Robinson. Universal TV and 3 Arts produced.
Inspired by Jerrod Carmichael’s relationship with his say-anything contrarian father, his therapist-in-training girlfriend, his ever-hustling brother and his mother who is always, always, always right with Jesus, The Carmichael Show stars Carmichael, David Alan Grier, Loretta Devine, Amber Stevens West and Lil Rel Howery. The series, from 20th TV and Universal TV, is exec produced by Carmichael, Nick Stoller, Ravi Nandan and Sanchez-Witzel.