Back in July, TNT ultimately opted to give Rizzoli & Isles a renewal for Season 7, which seemed like a no-brainer, as the show was reaching more than 11 million total viewers if you are counting all of the platforms TNT makes the series available on. However, at the time of its renewal, the show earned a paltry 13 episodes (a reasonable amount for cable but a small number for Rizzoli & Isles). Now we know why. It’s because TNT gave a shortened renewal order in order to wrap up the storyline. Rizzoli & Isles will be ending after Season 7.
This week at TNT and TBS’ recent TCA winter press tour, TNT president Kevin Reilly confirmed the news, which should be sad for fans. TV Line notes that series leads Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander might have done more episodes but that everyone at least is on the same page about the series ending after this winter’s run, now.
I don’t know that they wouldn’t do any more, but they felt very comfortable that it’s had a good run. Everyone said, ‘Let’s go out and finish 13 great ones and call it a day.
Rizzoli & Isles has been a consistent performer on TNT for the last six seasons. While Season 6 saw the ratings drop somewhat, the show still averaged more than 4 million total viewers each episode and did even better in Live+7 ratings, as noted in the intro paragraph of this story. You would think that TNT would want to keep the show for a few more seasons, at least until the ratings saw a serious decline, but that obviously doesn’t seem to be the case.
The probable explanation is that TNT wants to go in a different direction. TNT has been taking very definitive steps recently to get rid of its older TV originals in the attempt to bring in newer, edgier fare. The changes in programming have led to a slew of programs getting cancelled on the network. Last year, Franklin & Bash and Perception both got the axe. This year, the changes have been even more striking, as Legends, Public Morals and Agent X were all cancelled.
It’s not all bad news at the network. Funky niche drama The Librarians recently got renewed for Season 3, along with Major Crimes and Murder in the First. In addition, Season 7 has yet to premiere on TNT, so fans will have one more set of episodes to look forward to this winter. Since it seems as if the network worked with the show ahead of time to wrap up the storyline, hopefully the episodes will be a blast.
Rizzoli & Isles will hit the schedule on Tuesday, February 16 at 9 p.m. ET. In addition, you can check our midseason TV premiere schedule.