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TV remakes of big screen movies are not known for being long-lasting and massive successes, which naturally makes many viewers wonder why networks try so hard to get them made. But the networks definitely do it, and ABC earned quite a bit of flak during its lengthy attempt to spin the beloved John Hughes' comedy Uncle Buck into a weekly comedy. Now, just three weeks after the show's eight-episode first season premiered, Uncle Buck has been cancelled without a chance for Season 2, meaning those kids are totally on their own now.
Since ABC probably wasn't too eager to holler from the rooftops about Uncle Buck's cancellation, news of the comedy's demise was revealed by the show's co-star James Lesure on Twitter.
Grammatical errors aside, James Lesure's words are at least cordial and appreciative, and I'm sure it's hard to bite one's tongue after this whole ordeal. Uncle Buck was originally picked up for a Fall 2015 premiere, but it kept getting pushed back to the point where its episode order was chopped and ABC forced it into back-to-back airings presumably to get the episodes burned off as quickly as possible without shelving it. Not the best way to let a cast and crew know that their efforts were worth it.
If we're being honest, their efforts were only half-worth it, really. Uncle Buck was not a critical darling in the least, although many (myself included) found Mike Epps to be quite charming as the oafish and responsibility-lacking Buck Russell, and I hope he continues to build up his mainstream small screen career. The rest of the cast was good, too, including Nia Long as the matriarch and the trio of child actors - Iman Benson, Sayeed Shahidi and Aalyrah Caldwell - and it was an admirable choice to change the family's race to appeal to a different demographic. But the writing from creators Steven Cragg and Brian Bradley was overly predictable and adhered too strongly to sitcom conventions, so there you have it.
Uncle Buck didn't even do all that badly in the ratings, either, and it was definitely a bigger hit than whatever ABC had airing there last year. Nearly 5 million tuned in for the premiere episodes, and the third week even had an uptick on the second week's episode pairing. Last night's "finale" was second in the timeslot only to CBS' Zoo, currently in its second season, so it's highly possible that Uncle Buck could have been a hit somewhere on the primetime schedule in the fall. But now we'll never know.