Fans were left stunned when NBC pulled the plug on critically acclaimed series “The Carmichael Show” in June and now a network executive has explained why.
“It was hard to find a stable audience,” said Jennifer Salke, NBC Entertainment President, at the Television Critics Association Thursday, Aug. 3, according to Deadline. “We loved the show and the cast and [creator and star] Jerrod [Carmichael] from the start. It’s been a labor of love. Everyone was hoping the show would perform and grow. We saw a great stable audience slowly building with critical attention, but it remained in a challenging situation. We looked at the show with Jerrod, [and asked], ‘What’s the long-term plan? Is there a chance for real big success?’ Maybe it’s best to let the show end.”
Tensions between Carmichael and NBC emerged when the network issued a last-minute postponement of the mass-shooting episode, which was originally scheduled to air on the day two real-life shootings occurred. One happened during the GOP congressional baseball team’s practice in Alexandria, Va., and another happened at a UPS facility in San Francisco.
“We handled the episode with as much love and integrity as we could,” Carmichael said on the Netflix talk show “Chelsea” in June. “To pull that is just criminal. It does a disservice to the viewer, it does a disservice to you, it does a disservice to all of us.”
Carmichael exited the politically timely comedy series after three seasons, announcing his decision before NBC broke the news of the show’s cancellation.
“For three seasons — okay, 2.5 — I got to make a show that I love with my friends,” he said. “It’s something I’ve wanted to do since I was 13. Now, I’m excited to go make other things that I love. Thank you to every person who worked on or watched ‘The Carmichael Show.'”
Many fans were upset over the demise of the show, which covered hot-button topics like using the N-word, police brutality and rape.