Lloyd Owen in Viva Laughlin by Robert Voets/CBS
Since almost no one watched the second and final episode of CBS' misbegotten quasi-musical mess Viva Laughlin, let me share with you a headline that appeared at the start of Sunday's episode: " Viva Craps Out." I kid you not. (The headline was referring to the fictional casino, not the show. But really. Did they already know this was coming?)

And then there was this bit of dialogue, as casino owner Ripley Holden (Lloyd Owen) surveys his customer-free casino (prophetic, that) and asks his mousy accountant, "How long can we hold out?" The answer: "A week, tops."

Viva Laughlin didn't even last a week. Episode 1 crashed and burned Thursday with a plum CSI lead-in, and Episode 2 (which was of even considerably worse quality than the pilot) caused nary a ripple Sunday night. With the ever-fatal combo of lousy ratings and blistering reviews, CBS made the only logical move and canned it. After a CSI repeat this Sunday, The Amazing Race will return on Nov. 4, with an itinerary that includes first-time stops to Ireland, Lithuania and the scenic hot spot of Croatia. I'm excited to have this spectacular reality competition back on the Sunday schedule.

Laughlin isn't officially the first network cancellation of the new season. That honor goes to Fox's Nashville and the CW's Online Nation, two reality-based series that few even knew existed. But this is the first significant blow of the programmers' ax, and I'm sure far from the last.

The fact that nearly everyone predicted this would happen is no cause for celebration. Viva Laughlin wasn't a grand folly of a failure like the infamous but undeniably ambitious Cop Rock of 1990. Laughlin was a sadly botched experiment that was executed so halfheartedly you wonder why they even went to the trouble of taking this risk.

Music and TV shouldn't be strange bedfellows: Just look at the incredible success of the High School Musical movies on the Disney Channel. And while it was never a hit, NBC's much-missed American Dreams found a way to tell a compelling story with a musical backdrop (albeit not a traditional "musical" in the sense of characters bursting into song). All musical fans desire is something that's entertaining, and that's where Viva Laughlin came up miserably short.

Better luck next time, and I truly hope there is a next time. (Failing that, let's just hope that Kristin Chenoweth gets a chance to deliver more show-stoppers like her "Hopelessly Devoted to You" star turn on Pushing Daisies' second episode. Given that Raul Esparza from Broadway's recent Company revival just made an appearance as a potential love interest for Chenoweth's Olive, anything is possible.)