While it has taken the networks a few days longer to warm up to their freshman comedies, the last few days saw the likes of Dr. Ken, The Grinder and more get full season pick-ups. Now, ABC is throwing a little confidence behind its freshman comedy The Muppets. While the show has not been picked up for a full-season order, ABC has ordered three more episodes of The Muppets, bringing the total count up to 16.
While there have been some clear winners and equally clear losers this fall, The Muppets has landed somewhere in the middle, although the show has certainly improved the average numbers in the timeslot over at ABC. The reason The Muppets has been a middling winner is that it had an extremely strong premiere, with roughly 9 million total viewers tuning in to see what was up with Miss Piggy and Kermit post-break-up. However, the next week those numbers dropped by a large chunk, with 5.78 million total viewers tuning in. In subsequent weeks, the show has stabilized at over 4 million total viewers. While those aren’t terrible numbers, they are a far cry from the premiere, and it’s easy to see why ABC wouldn’t be bending over backwards to give the show a 22-episode pickup.
However, ABC is stating that the reason they only opted to give The Muppets three more episodes has nothing to do with viewership and everything to do with the channel’s stacked lineup. THR reports the extra episode order is meant to boost The Muppets while still leaving room for the midseason premieres of The Real O’Neals and Uncle Buck. The sly move will obviously keep us guessing about the future of the series over the next few months as The Muppets continues to produce more episodes.
The news is unlikely to please those ladies over at One Million Moms, who earlier this fall sent out one of our favorite complaints ever, which even manages to call the new Bill Prady (also of The Big Bang Theory) comedy “perverted. I’d hate to see what would occur if one of those moms accidentally happened onto a cable channel at some point. Still, if you haven’t caught the series, you should know it’s attempting to take the tone of the early Muppets and be a little more adult.
As mentioned earlier, The Muppets isn’t the first comedy to get more episodes this season. CBS’ Life in Pieces, ABC’s Dr. Ken, and Fox’s The Grinder and Grandfathered have all received full 22-episode orders. In addition, here’s a look at some shows that aren’t doing so well.
The Muppets airs Tuesday nights on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET.