NBC stops holding out for “Heroes”

Bad news for the few remaining fans of “Heroes”: The series, once upon a time a contender for mega-franchise status, has finally been cancelled.

News ends speculation that NBC was looking to bring the show back on a limited basis to wrap things up. That was still considered a real possibility until recently. But having picked up 11 new shows for fall, NBC likely didn’t see the need, the room or the money necessary to make such an arrangement.

Peacock execs are already moving on to a new superhero, anyway: “The Cape,” which has been ordered for 2010-2011.

A case study should probably be drawn up on what happened to “Heroes.” Rarely has such a strong opener fall from grace so quickly.

“Heroes” opened huge in 2006, and became such a quick player for the network that it quickly spawned a spinoff (which was ultimately scrapped), online components, books and merchandising. The rally cry “Save the cheerleader, save the world” became a marketing powerhouse.

The show’s creative, however, eventually fell off — a factor that some pegged on creator/exec producer Tim Kring’s busy schedule. NBC touted a rejuvenated series several times, and attempted to sell the show as a series of “books” with a beginning, middle and end. But viewers didn’t return.

And at some point, it didn’t make sense to bring such an expensive show back — even though Universal Media Studios is the producer. Season to date, “Heroes” has averaged a 3.0 rating and 7 share — down 32% from last year’s 4.4. Among viewers, its 6.5 million is down 29% from last year’s 9.2 million.

“Heroes” starred Jack Coleman, Noah Gray-Cabey, Greg Grunberg, Ali Larter, James Kyson Lee, Masi Oka, Hayden Panettiere, Adrian Pasdar, Zachary Quinto, Sendhil Ramamurthy, Dania Ramirez and Milo Ventimiglia. Kring was EP, along with Dennis Hammer, Allan Arkush and Greg Beeman.

Reaction to the cancellation has so far been of the “coulda been a contender” variety. Critics and fans said the show just didn’t live up to its season one promise.

“‘Heroes,” canceled by NBC, and rightly so, was one of my biggest disappointments as a TV critic. And viewer,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Gail Pennington wrote. “I loved it so much!”

“Heroes” even won the Television Critics Assn.’s 2007 award for program of the year, while the TV Land Awards gave the show its “future classic” award.

The cancellation of “Heroes” follows NBC’s decision to end “Law & Order” after 20 seasons. “Mercy” and “Trauma” were officially axed on Friday, as NBC paves the way for its new series.

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  1. Heroes#1 says:

    I hope other networks pick up the show.

  2. Mark ML says:

    Hmm…a little disappointed, although I can’t say I’m too surprised. I thought S1 and most of S2 were fabulous, but it just got repetitive and went downhill after that.
    I saw every episode, but honestly don’t remember much of the last seasons except for the silly terrorist allegories and the circus freaks. I’m not even really bummed about not resolving the final cliffhanger, because even that seemed like it had been repeated one too many times.
    When even your fans are apathetic, you’ve got serious writing problems. I just kept watching, hoping it would get better.

  3. Mystic says:

    I can’t believe this crap! Heroes was one of the best shows left on TV, even if it DID kinda go downhill a bit…but so did “LOST”…But at least they gave Lost an ending…even if it was a crappy one. Heroes was WAY better than Lost, so I really don’t understand what the hell NBC is thinking. NBC has never been known for their great prgramming, and most of their “original” series are severely flawed…and in most cases, seriously retarded. They have worse judgement than FOX does when it comes to picking up and cancelling the GOOD shows. It seems like only the GOOD ones get cancelled, and all we’re left with is $hit. It would’t have taken much to make Heroes as amazing and original as it was during it’s 1st season….All Tim Kring, and his writers would have had to do was actually FOCUS on the one good show they had, and make sure to keep it fresh at every turn. This is a serious offense to all of us viewers who still watched Heroes, even at it’s less interesting moments. It’s sad that all the GOOD shows get the axe these days, while the other 99% of shows on TV are complete CRAP…yet they just keep going and going like tat annoying ass Bunny…God save us all…

  4. kristin says:

    I agree with mike…I have wasted so much time to watch this show and now no ending…whatever

  5. mike says:

    i think the one that sucks about TV now is like reading a book without ever finishing it. I’ve invested personal time and DVR time watching every episode to make sure I don’t miss a thing and the network cancels it and it never finishes and i’m left with would’ve could’ve…tv is becoming so jaded its not even worth watching it. looks like my netflix and ondemand movies are worth more than watching TV.

  6. DC says:

    Heroes and Law and Order both cancelled? I’m trying to see what they have left to make me even bother with NBC.

  7. sam says:

    As much as I wanted Heroes to continue, fans just refused to come back — i’ve never seen a show more affected by the writer’s stike than Heroes. It had to end in December and not come back until September and just faced stiff competition which NBC refused to move to another night. I think it pretty much ended right where it should have been
    There is talk of a 2 or 4 hour movie event on nbc — all of you remaining fans should clamor for that.

  8. SK says:

    I think it’s time . . after the most brilliant Season 1, it has gone downhill rather rapidly. I’m so sick of Syler being good then evil etc.

  9. Rich Ramirez in CA says:

    Damn…I want a refund on the season DVDS!!!! I had things without an ending dammit! NBC sucks. At least let the show have an ending. Plain and simple!!!!

  10. Grace says:

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! I LOVE HEROES!!!!!!!!! IT’S MY FAVORITE SHOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHY, NBC, WHY!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!!?!?!?!
    I am crying.

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