“Cancellations are always a tough call,” CBS Entertainment President Kelly Kahl said, “and the circumstances around COVID-19 have not lightened the load on broadcasters.
This season, CBS pulled the plug on shows including God Friended Me, Tommy, Carol’s Second Act and Broke. Kahl said all of these were tough decisions, made “tougher by the situation that we find ourselves in.”
“At the end of the day they weren’t doing the numbers we were hoping for, and despite liking them creatively, knowing timely decisions were upon us, we had to make tough calls to move on from those shows,” he told Deadline. “You want to keep them all for another season; that’s what makes these calls tough. You invest a lot of time and effort and people put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into these shows, and when you have to say goodbye. It’s a tough call.”
God Friended Me was, perhaps, the most surprising call. While the show never was a strong demo draw, the supernatural drama had attracted sizable audiences and was a breakout in its first season. Numbers on the show, which starred Brandon Michael Hall, went down in Season 2, but it also was well received by critics.
Creators Steven Lilien and Bryan Wynbrandt told Deadline recently that it was bittersweet but added that they were pleased to have been given enough notice to craft a series finale, despite the looming COVID-19 production shutdown.
Meanwhile, three other CBS freshmen failed to pick up second seasons: drama Tommy, starring Edie Falco; multi-camera comedy Broke, which starred Pauley Perrette; and multicam comedy Carol’s Second Act, starring Patricia Heaton,
Man with a Plan, starring Matt LeBlanc and in its fourth season, was the only returning CBS show not to make the cut for renewal this year. The sitcom had been a reliable utility player as a midseason replacement, but its cost was thought to have outweighed its viewership numbers.