‘Southland’ Cancelled By NBC Before Its Second Season Premiere

The dark and gritty cop drama Southland has been cancelled by NBC before its second season premiere even aired. What this means is NBC produced six episodes of an expensive scripted crime drama but won’t broadcast them because they know no one will watch.

Excuse us for a moment…

Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.

It doesn’t matter if this is the correct move or not, canceling a show two weeks before it’s second season debut males the network look foolish and only highlights the fact that NBC is downright awful.

To further their tumble into television oblivion, the Peacock will continue to air Dateline episodes instead of Southland. Egads!

In two years, NBC may not even have a scripted show on their schedule. Then again, in two years there may not be an NBC.

We joke but this move may actually be prudent. Despite a strong debut, Southland quickly became just like every other show on NBC–viewer-less. The old regime at NBC stood behind the John Wells crime caper but obviously the new regime did not.

There are some who believe Southland was canceled because The Jay Leno Show occupies the 10 p.m. time slot, the hour normally filled with adult dramas. However, if NBC was willing to put a five-nights-a-week comedy show (Leno) in an hour people don’t want to watch comedy than you’d think that if they really liked Southland they would find a way to make it work at 9 p.m.

Still, it does raise questions about the long term feasibility of Leno in the 10 o’clock hour and where does NBC put it’s hard-hitting, adult oriented dramas (if they ever get one).

Speaking of Leno, he had this to say about the Southland fiasco:

“NBC’s ratings aren’t so hot. In fact — and this is true — this week the network canceled the show ‘Southland’ before it even came back on the air. Next thing you know they’ll be canceling shows before writers can even think of them.”

Another perplexing part of this ordeal is why pull the plug on a show with unseen episodes in reserve when Heroes, Trauma, and Mercy attract less viewers than static?

Maybe NBC is planning to put Dateline on five-nights-a-week too?

Update10-13-2009/09:41

According to the Hollywood Reporter, TNT is looking to pick up Southland. Talks have started between NBC and Warner Bros. TV.

Update11-02-2009/12:35

TNT has picked up Southland.

Beginning Jan. 12, TNT will air the first seven episodes of the series that previously aired on NBC. They will then follow that run with the six Season 2 episodes that were completed before NBC unceremoniously canceled the show.

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