CBS Boss Addresses Why Magnum P.I. Was Cancelled

Of all the shows to get the ax this year, Magnum P.I.'s cancellation at CBS was definitely one of the most surprising. The reboot had run for four seasons when the network cancelled it and, considering that its ratings appeared solid, many questioned the network's decision. Now, we have a bit of clarity in that regard, courtesy of CBS Entertainment president, Kelly Kahl.

Following Magnum’s cancellation, outlets like Deadline was reported that there were numerous factors behind the drama getting canned Apparently, it was a business decision connected to a licensing fee. CBS’ new group of drama pilots for this fall also played into the choice. Kelly Kahl spoke to TVLine about the high-profile decision and seemed to echo what was alleged in the initial reports:

You have some tough decisions to make and you have lots of factors — and I’m not going to rule [the licensing fee] out as one of them. It was a great team to work with, and one of the tougher decisions we had to make.

In many cases, decisions like these aren't easy for a network to make, especially when it comes to a show that has done so well ratings-wise over the years. Such a development is even sadder to see when the series has such a passionate fanbase and strong cast and crew like Magnum P.I. Jay Hernandez, who portrays the titular character, shared his reaction to the news, making it clear that the show, and his journey with it, will forever mean something to him.

Meanwhile, Kelly Kahl also spoke to THR about the procedural, doubling down on her sentiments. While discussing the matter with the trade, the network exec said:


[The] economics on a lot of shows are challenging. It’s not the sole reason. There are usually multiple factors.

While Magnum P.I.'s demise still hurts, fans at least have a better idea of why things have played out this way. Over the years, many a fanbase have been left in the dark about why their favorite show was axed. With the fall schedule for CBS now out, it’s honestly strange not seeing the series on the lineup. Fingers crossed that the show makes another comeback sometime in the future, because I'd argue that there are plenty of other stories to tell.

The Jay Hernandez-led drama now formally takes it place among the many big TV cancellations that have occurred as of late. The other shows that were dropped by CBS include comedies B Positive, How We Roll, and United States of Al as well as the drama Good Sam. The network did pick up multiple series like Fire Country, East New York, True Lies, and So Help Me Todd, though.

This year was a harsh one for cancellations and included plenty of fan-favorite shows. The 2022-23 TV season will be without some heavy hitters, and it definitely won’t be the same. And with the new drama Fire Country taking over Magnum P.I.’s Friday timeslot in the fall, CBS seems to be wasting new time in finding a perfect replacement for it.

Be sure to check out CinemaBlend’s 2022 TV schedule for info on other shows that are premiering or returning this year. And to stay up on the latest broadcast casualties, keep an eye on our list of all the TV shows that have been cancelled or are ending this year.

Megan Behnke
Freelance TV News Writer

Passionate writer. Obsessed with anything and everything entertainment, specifically movies and television. Can get easily attached to fictional characters.