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For whatever reason, May 12 was the day this year that most of the networks made their cancellation and renewal decisions. We’ve already said goodbye to some well-liked programs, including ABC’s own Agent Carter and Castle, which was widely expected to be renewed for a shortened Season 9. But the onslaught of cancelled network shows doesn’t end there. In fact, we just learned that ABC’s quirky musical comedy Galavant also missed its ratings benchmarks this season. Thus, ABC made the difficult decision to cancel Galavant, despite the fact the show has enjoyed continued viewing via streaming outlets like Hulu. There will be no Season 3 for the unique comedy.
From the moment Galavant belted out its first super witty and fun lyrics, it was clear that the ABC comedy was not the usual sitcom. From its characters to its medieval setting and its major musical component, Galavant was always a niche sort of project, but a welcome one. In fact, nothing was ordinary about Galavant. When ABC first included the series on the schedule, the 8 episodes were aired in an hourly format with back-to-back episodes. (Episodes 1 and 2 airing the first week, 2 and 3 the second week and so on and so forth.) It was a format that fans seem to have liked—at least those who caught the series when it aired on network TV.
That, however, seems to be Galavant’s downfall. Reports indicate that ABC kept Galavant on the air for a second season thanks to its higher profitability when sold to subscription streaming services. Maybe ABC was hoping people would catch up on Hulu and would want to watch the series live during Season 2, which is similar to what happened with Revenge when much of the series was made available on the network’s site for potential fans to check out after the show started gaining buzz. It didn’t really work. Instead, the ratings actually dropped quite a bit during Season 2, and with the new numbers, it seems ABC had to make a tough call regarding its critical darling.
TV Line reports that a second problem may have been that Paul Lee championed the show, but when he left in February, there was no longer a major presence fighting for the right to keep the series around. Even lyrics from Alan Menken and Glenn Slater weren’t going to save this one.
As it stands, there are quite a few shows that aren’t going to be returning next year, many of which we predicted. Just because a lot of shows are getting the axe this year doesn't mean the sting hurts any less when one of your favorites goes. (I wish The Grinder would keep getting people off, so I'm right there with you.) Stay tuned to find out what shows end up getting axed and which end up sticking around over the long haul.