Having sitcom stalwarts
Kelsey Grammer and
Patricia Heaton in starring roles wasn't enough for Fox to bring
Back to You back to you, the viewer, for a second season. "This was not an easy decision," said Fox Entertainment chief Kevin Reilly. "But with that kind of top-profile talent and...proximity to [
American Idol] in the second half of the season, the expectations were higher."
Reilly emphasized Fox is working to develop a live-action comedy franchise, but Back To You didn't seem to fit that bill. "The show did not seem to be strking a chord, and in terms of creative direction...it was a pretty mixed bag," he said.
The show did go down with a fight. It got off to a strong start when it debuted last fall, attracting more than nine million viewers. Two episodes that followed Idol in April each brought in more than 12 million sets of eyeballs. While that's respectable - it won its timeslot on those two occasions, in terms of viewers and the highly coveted adult 18-49 group - more than half of the Idol viewers shouted "hey, who's got the remote?" and went away upon hearing "Seacrest Out!"
The show, however, never recovered following the writers' strike, mustering only about seven million viewers in the series' final four airings.
Could Back to You still have some life? TV Week reported that 20th Century Fox shopped the series to CBS, but the show is not on the network's fall schedule.
Executive producer Steven Levitan told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette the show wasn't a good fit on Fox to begin with. "We've been on the wrong network from the start," he said. "We got talked into it. That was our blunder. [Fox is] a network that appealed to a different kind of people than we're aiming for." - J.R. Whalen