8 items from 2016
ABC has pulled the plug on The Muppets TV show, choosing to cancel it rather than order a second season...
The Muppets TV show has been cancelled by ABC. The network has opted not to order a second season of the show, which perhaps doesn’t come as a huge surprise given the turmoil that the series has faced.
Halfway through the first (and now only) season of The Muppets, Galavant’s Kristen Newman was brought in as a new co-showrunner and the series’ co-creator Bob Kushell was shuffled out. Newman spoke publicly about her plans to refocus the show on “joy and zaniness and heart”, but it seems that ABC still weren’t pleased at the end of the season.
The ratings are arguably the biggest contributor to this decision to cancel The Muppets. Variety reports that The Muppets ended with around 5 million viewers in the Nielsen “live plus-7” estimates, »
ABC has cancelled comedy series “The Muppets.” The show will not be picked up for a second season.
The decision to pull the plug on the show came after a midseason show runner change failed to turn around disappointing ratings. The show underperformed following a massive marketing campaign around its launch. Critics derided the series as not family-friendly enough and out of step with the history of the characters, created by the late Jim Henson.
“The Muppets” started hot as might be expected but had a quick fade, finishing with a 1.7 rating in adults 18-49 and 5 million viewers overall in Nielsen’s “live plus-7” estimates. ABC has been faring a little better of late in its Tuesday timeslot with “The Real O’Neals.”
Still, ABC had until recently been leaning toward a renewal for the series based in part on the franchise’s overall value to corporate parent the Walt Disney Co. »
- Daniel Holloway
Tonight marks the season finale of The Muppets on ABC. The network wasn't happy with the new Tuesday night series' ratings in the fall so they replaced series showrunner Bob Kushell with Galavant's showrunner, Kristin Newman. Newman made some changes to the series but they don't seem to have made a difference. The ratings hit new lows when the show returned from its winter hiatus.
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“The Muppets are all about joy and zaniness” stresses Kristen Newman, the new showrunner of their ABC series…
Now that Kristen Newman (who jumped ships from ABC's Galavant) has taken over from Bob Kushell as the co-showrunner to Bill Prady on ABC’s The Muppets series, she’s quickly made some changes to the show.
“I came in for episode 10, which was the Christmas episode that aired before the break,” she told The Hollywood Reporter, “and Day 1 of work was rewriting Piggy-Kermit scenes to really bring that connection back.”
“The heart of the whole franchise has always been Piggy and Kermit, and I think breaking them up was really smart,” she continued. “There’s always more story to be told and more tension when two people who love each other are apart instead of together. But what’s important to remember is that they do love each other, »
CAA has signed veteran comedy writer-producer Bob Kushell. He most recently co-created ABC’s freshman comedy series The Muppets and served as an executive producer and showrunner until his exit in November. Kushell started his primetime writing career on HBO’s Dream On and went on to work on The Simpsons, 3rd Rock From The Sun, American Dad, Grounded For Life, Samantha Who?, and Malcolm In The Middle. He created the BBC comedy Way To Go among other series. Kushell was… »
The curious case of The Muppets has been puzzling critics and viewers alike — who the hell is Denise, and where the hell is Camilla? — since the mockumentary-style comedy premiered on ABC in the fall to a lukewarm response. The show, which chronicles the adorable anthropomorphic characters in Los Angeles as they work on the late-night talk show Up Late With Miss Piggy, was noticeably more adult in narrative and oddly morose in its overall tone. But instead of muttering a signature Beaker meep meep and continuing on with production, showrunner Bob Kushell was let go, soon replaced by Galavant showrunner Kristin Newman to give it a Dr. Bunsen Honeydew-calculated change. And what are those changes, you may ask? In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Newman discussed at length about how her main goal will be to make the show less mean-spirited and instead fill it with »
- Devon Ivie
Last spring, ABC boss Paul Lee boasted of one of his new comedies, "This is not your grandmother's 'Muppets.'" At press tour this weekend, Lee admitted "The Muppets" needed some creative tweaking, because, "We didn’t quite feel it had the joy, the laughter, and the heart we were looking for." In other words, they now want something very much like your grandmother's "Muppets," which is as it should be. The version of "The Muppets" that debuted in the fall had funny moments, but for the most part the characters seemed cynical and bitter and occasionally mean in a way that doesn't at all fit what Jim Henson's creations should be doing. The last couple of episodes that aired seemed to finally be bringing the sweetness back to the Muppets, and it sounds like new showrunner Kristin Newman (who arrived in time to do some rewriting of the »
- Alan Sepinwall
ABC Entertainment Group chief Paul Lee was candid about the shortcomings of the much-ballyhooed revival of “The Muppets” in assessing the network’s performance during his presentation Saturday at the Television Critics Association winter press tour in Pasadena, Calif.
The fall launch in general was solid for the Alphabet. Lee cited the Sunday night FBI drama “Quantico” as having emerged an important new player. Star Priyanka Chopra is “a quintessential ABC star,” Lee enthused, pointing to the growth in delayed viewing week after week. “We really think the show has legs.”
But on “Muppets,” Lee didn’t gild the lily. The show was a creative disappointment even if it turned in a decent Nielsen number. Lee said he’s encouraged by five scripts that he’s seen from new showrunner Kristin Newman, who was recruited last year to replace Bob Kushell.
The response to the “Muppets” underscored the depth of »
- Cynthia Littleton
8 items from 2016
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