TNT just canceled another drama. Earlier this week, the cable network announced that Franklin and Bash won’t return for a fifth season. On Thursday, TNT announced that Perception is being kicked off the network, too. The show is currently in the middle of a split season. The first part of Season 3 aired this summer, and reports indicate fans will get to see the story finish out when Perception returns to the schedule this February.
Perception stars Eric McCormack as Dr. Daniel Pierce, a neuroscience professor who consults with the FBI on various cases. The twist in this procedural is that Pierce actually suffers from paranoid schizophrenia, leading to hallucinations (including making up an imaginary friend named Natalie) that help him to come to various conclusions and to solve some of the FBI’s most complex cases. That description is complex, but Perception is most often a fun procedural with a unique viewpoint, and it showed in its viewership. More than 3 million total viewers tuned in for the Season 3 premiere.
While Franklin and Bash’s faltering ratings went a long way to explain why TNT wanted to drop the show, Perception was doing fairly well on the channel. More than 2.5 million total viewers tuned in on Tuesday nights, which is pretty good for summer fodder. Plus, while the 18-49 demographic was nothing to write home about, on the older skewing channel, it was hardly a disaster.
However, looking at that last sentence therein lies the problem. According to Deadline, TNT is looking to go “edgier” and the network has hired a new dude, Kevin Reilly, to move the brand forward. I’m assuming that edgy is code for younger viewership, and TNT also mentions the network would like to bring in more female viewers, while keeping its male audience. I think they phrase TNT may be looking for is “achieving a broad audience.” The network will try to nab it with new series The Librarians, which is set to premiere next month.
On the bright side, Perception isn’t ending on that cliffhanger the show dropped on us back in August. When last we saw Pierce and the gang, they had just wrapped up a case when another involving a mobster fell into their laps. There was a big explosion, leaving our hero potentially in danger. You can check out that startling closer, below.
Thus, at least we’ll get the final few episodes in February to close out the series, hopefully in a way that makes sense.
In the meantime, we’ll let you know if TNT signs on for any new dramas, especially any “edgy” and female-oriented dramas.