After renewing 15 scripted shows for a 2020-21 season that’ll be greatly impacted by coronavirus, CBS has officially cancelled a handful of shows – Broke, Man with a Plan, Tommy, and Carol’s Second Act.
The most surprising of the bunch has to be Man with a Plan, which has been a sturdy utility player for CBS despite little promotion. Fronted by a recognizable lead in Matt LeBlanc, it seemed destined to be the network’s Rules of Engagement, i.e. a show that spends a quiet first-run building its episode count and helping shore up problem slots on the schedule before heading off to a long and lucrative syndicated afterlife. However, CBS has never seemed to care for the show and with the syndication market drying up and LeBlanc’s salary making the show expensive, it couldn’t evade cancellation for another season.
From Alex Herschlag (Will & Grace), Broke followed a spoiled trust fund baby (Jaime Camil) who’s forced to move in with his sister-in-law after he’s cut off from his rich father. The series, which started off promising in the ratings but has slid in recent weeks, also starred Pauley Perrette (NCIS), Natasha Leggero (Another Period), and Izzy Diaz (Telenovela).
From Paul Attanasio (House), Tommy centered on Abigail “Tommy” Thomas (Edie Falco), a former NYPD officer who becomes the first LAPD Chief of Police. The series was a win for CBS’s recent diversity push, as Falco’s character was a lesbian whose sexuality the series wasn’t scared to address, and had some (small scale) ratings momentum during its season. However, it didn’t grow enough to justify another season.
From Emily Halpern and Sarah Haskins (Trophy Wife), Carol’s Second Act chronicled the second career of retired teacher Carol Kenney (Patricia Heaton) as she decides to pursue her longtime dream of becoming a doctor. The series finale featured a guest appearance from Heaton’s Back to You co-star Kelsey Grammer, who would’ve been promoted to series regular should the series have been renewed. Carol was also the subject of a sexual harassment investigation involving one of its producers and a writer who eventually left the series.