NBC Yanks ‘The Michael J. Fox Show’

The Michael J. Fox Show TV

Michael J. Fox’s return to television appears to have been short-lived. NBC has yanked the struggling comedy “The Michael J. Fox Show” from its Thursday lineup, effectively pulling the series from its schedule after 15 episodes.

“Hollywood Game Night” will take its place in the Thursday slot beginning Feb. 27. The Winter Olympics will air on the first three Thursdays of the month.

NBC shot a total of 22 episodes of the half-hour Fox skein this past year, but it never caused much of a ratings ripple. In its final Thursday airing, on Jan. 23, “Michael J. Fox” pulled a mere 0.7 rating/2 share in adults 18-49 and 2.2 million viewers overall.

This is the latest blow to NBC’s struggling Thursday comedy block, coming two weeks after the net shelved another struggling first-year half-hour, Sean Hayes starrer “Sean Saves the World.”

It was believed that NBC might stick with “Michael J. Fox” a bit longer, if only because it gave the show a straight-to-series order of 22 episodes and they had all been shot. It’s unclear if and when the Peacock might air the remaining episodes.

“The Michael J. Fox Show” marked the return of Fox to NBC, where he was a Thursday night mainstay in the ’80s with “Family Ties.”

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  1. Gwen Sanchez says:

    I have Parkinson’s disease as well, I was astonished how well he played his parts. and I thought the show was great Michael inspired everyone we miss you.

  2. Figures… I like a show and it gets pulled :/
    Michael J Fox is a very talented comedian. I thought he did a great job with this one. The entire cast were a lot of fun – sorry to learn of this decision.

  3. Shauna Campbell says:

    Any way you look at it it was disrespectful to Michael J Fox and his wife and his kids. The show could have been better stories could have been better Michael was fantastic and he deserved the best they had for writers,producers,directors or whatever else was involved but they didn’t give it to him sad😡

  4. skoonix says:

    When I see people leave comments like “fire the writers” “bring in new writers” my blood boils. It just shows how they have NO understanding how broadcast television works. The network executives drive and steer and change a show – they give the notes, they throw out stories, they change the humor. They have total control. Unless you are Aaron Sorkin or Larry David, the writer barely has ANY power. They have to do what the network says. It is all this corporate interference that has neutered comedy and killed the “singular voice” of the sitcom. Comedy by committee is the problem.

  5. Paulette Lebow says:

    It doesnt surprise me, humour with a message of understanding an illness is not given a chance. How about giving a time slot earlier, so it can be watched as a famiy. It doesnt belong at a 9:30 slot.

  6. Shauna Campbell says:

    Give Michael J Fox another shot only this time give him the attention and respect he deserves!!!!

  7. ginas13 says:

    Exactly. If I was NBC, I would fire the writing staff and hire some comedy writers that actually know him and the humor he is better known for. Also, like some people have said, hire his wife, Tracey. Unless she didn’t want to do it. I think they could have made it better instead of scrapping the entire show. Its a waste and makes them look bad.

  8. Shauna Campbell says:

    I loved the way they talk and told you what was going on each one of them and I love the way Michael J Fox handled his disability yay! I don’t like the stories they need to be upgraded

  9. I have enjoy the Michael J. Fox show, it was funny they have good story telling. I give him credit for performing his role very good.

  10. Shauna Campbell says:

    Michael J Fox deserves better writers just like Bill Cosby asked for and got get better writers, better scripts! the cast is great Michael J Fox deserves it and he should have it give him another chance. Michael shows us even with disability we can succeed!!!!!!!!

  11. Skevin says:

    There were a few episodes that were appealing enough to make me believe that this might work as a vehicle for him. It definitely had its MODERN FAMILY moments but they were so few. The main problem with the show to me was the gelling of the family members. All the work place situational stuff was usually spot on but I never really cared for some of the family or rather extended family member(s). I thought the kid that played the oldest son was brilliant but miscast. At times when he and MJF were on the screen together, it was like watching two dads, an old one and a young one, trying to please the wife and run the household- too much and uncomfortable. I wonder if they ever felt that the family chemistry was off and sometimes off-putting?

  12. Peter Leahy says:

    Self referential never works…

  13. tony says:

    Skein? A length of yarn or flock of geese.

    Errrr….. Copy editor someone?

  14. bill let says:

    at 89 years old,im not use to computers, so im sorry for not spelling votes instead of voters,and back instead of baci

    • I liked the show. The delivery orbits moved in different time flows, but a great first attempt. Production costs money, so profit not sympathy is the main driver for executives. I often wondered if the schedule was demanding more than Fox’s non-filming program because some scenes are very holistically delivered across all characters. Keep up the great work, Mr. Fox… Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your family. As a personal success, you hit the mark.

      Anthony Maisano III

  15. bill let says:

    im glad he is gone. ever since he lied on tv about his illness and faked his medical response to win voters in an election,he got bacl a little justice. bill

  16. I really liked this show and am SO sorry to see it go. No, it wasn’t the funniest show in the world, but it was tons better than most of the sex and smut centered, stereotypical shows on tv. It wasn’t about his Parkinson’s, it was about life. I thought it was handled well and yes the show could have been done better but it deserved a longer run than that.

  17. Aw, man. I really liked this show…been watching it every week & even bought the “season pass” for it on Amazon.com! Maybe NBC can give it a second chance & reevaluate the show by running the remaining episodes of it in May/June, after the regular TV season ends. I’m sure they WON’T… but It might fare better as a summer series. Another show I like buys it (still miffed that USA is ending Psych!).

  18. Don says:

    This show would have been gone faster than “We are men” had it not been for MJF! Let’s face it, everybody adores him and wanted to see it happen. I lasted half way through the 1st episode and that was it. BTW, “We Are Men” was kinda funny, and had potential. I really wanted to see where these characters were going… Oh well!

  19. AltaValdes says:

    The show had a lack of catch from story, characters, something like 30 Rock had, the show felt as like, the final season of a show, it’s sad, cause actually I think almost everybody expected something great from it.

  20. Jesse Skeen says:

    I tried to watch the first episode but tuned out after 2 minutes because of the annoying turkey logo AND a constant “Ironside” promo (which was also quickly cancelled) next to that! When will the networks realize that their infatuation with ruining the picture with on-screen junk is needlessly costing them viewers??? I’ve NEVER heard a valid reason for it, and nobody can straight-out say what’s been GAINED by doing this!

  21. Dyan Devere says:

    Funny…I was an extra in Teen Wolf! I also love MJF and he was very nice on the set. This new show had bad casting in my opinion. I agree that Tracy would have been better as his wife. I didn’t like the casting of his wife and the kids… Or the sister. Well… I guess I really didn’t like the writing either. I agree that not every show should try the modern family type of humor. That’s hard to pull off! I hope MJF can find a better vehicle for his gift.

  22. Julian Leal says:

    I was an extra in a movie “Light of Day” and met Michael on the set, he was in his prime and it’s sad that the network kind of spotlighted his Parkinson’s more than his acting and quick wit but maybe there was no way around it, either way he was great back then and has left a great legacy of movie and tv moments….

  23. andrewhyte says:

    I think Michael J Fox is great. From back to the future to all of his TV series he has done a great job. I also that his Parkisons disease is present in every episode. I think for those who know Michael J Fox from Teen wolf to the current show can clearly see that something is wrong. Teen and young adults might not grasp the concept of what is worn with him but it present to those who know. Above I wish Michael the best and he has had a great career.

  24. Vickie Blackwell says:

    I think he is wonderfull I wish I had he streghth

  25. AlwaysRIGHT says:

    The thing is, for me, although I obviously noticed MJF’s motions, it didn’t impact the way I viewed the show. And the occasional references, I thought, were good/nice. His “condition” was integrated well into the show (as obviously it was part of show) but overall it was just a show, a comedy, and i liked the show.

    Sidenote, I think they should have had his real wife play his wife. She was hotter and I would have liked the “reality” aspect of it. I’ve always like her. And I liked how I/we saw them meet on Family Ties. Tracy Pollan is a babe and a great woman.

    They are both in my thoughts/prayers. Good people. I’m sure he’ll be fine without the show. But we’ll be without a half hour good show every week.

  26. Dan says:

    I had a hard time watching the show. I really love MJF. He’s a great guy! But watching him shuffle and struggle makes me feel so bad for him. I know he doesn’t feel bad for himself and actually considers his illness a blessing, which he’s expressed many times on talk shows. I’ve still watched him on talk shows, but can close my eyes, and not actually watch him moving involuntarily. I watched a couple episodes as well as the premier of Sean Saves the World. I love Sean Hayes, but that was a awful sitcom. I tuned in, but maybe watched 10 minutes cause I started doing something else I was so bored.

    I’m sorry for MJF losing the sitcom. He was really enjoying doing it as he said last time he was on Ellen a couple weeks ago. I know it is a blow to him.

    • Donna says:

      Forgive me, but I don’t believe THEIR show was EVER intended to be about his disability – it is about Family. Period. Every family has a disability and learns to deal with with it. What is your family’s disability and how do you deal with it?

      To Nanny Mo: I am sorry that you have problems…All of us do. You might try an opposite approach – watching others struggle (as WE ALL DO) and learning from their positive approach (Such as Michael J Fox’s recent show so beautifully exemplified).

  27. Nanny Mo says:

    Well, you can only do the joke of the disability so many times and then it loses it’s punch. Also (and this will seem mean, but it’s not meant to be) T.V. is so much about escapism. I watch to forget myself and my problems, when I see Michael struggling so (and I was a HUGE fan of his growing up) it just makes me so sad I can’t watch him. I can’t stand to see him like that. I don’t want to remember him that way.

  28. maybe the producers should take it to Netfix and give it a try, it would have a lot more life there than the Networks are giving shows…..http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWm4bs6dUc0&feature=share&list=UUPprVIYwdWOko8k8vFvgecg

  29. Donna says:

    NBC Shame On You! Michael’s show is/was gold if you had placed properly. You never gave this show a time slot with a chance – had nothing to do with subject matter!!!!!

    LOVE TO MJF & cast: You guys rock and sold it.

    love from a comedy writer living in Seattle

  30. AlwaysRIGHT says:

    I watched all the episodes. It was a decent show. Was it great? Probably not. But was it better than “Hollywood Game Night” will be – hell yeah! OMG, f**ing yes. C’mon, are all network execs/programming execs retards who are fixated on junk tv? Will all shows resemble Kardashian no-talent crap at some point?

    Seriously, almost everything on network tv is crap. Reality shows are the ultimate in crap. That MJF show was good. I wouldn’t rate it as high as Seinfeld but c’mon, it was good and I wish it was going to continue. There are only a few comedy shows I watch regularly… that MJF show was one them. Rules of Engagement (also cancelled, but in reruns). Big Game Theory. Two and a Half Men (which isn’t as good as it used to be, but is still pretty good). I can’t think of the others. Whatever! It was a good show.

    MJF – i “love” ya, man! Family Ties, Back to the Future, awesome career (and hot wife, too!) and all-around good guy.

  31. ginas13 says:

    Such a shame, he deserved better writing instead of a typical stale sitcom trying to rip-off Modern Family.

  32. cadavra says:

    And one again, they pull the plug rather than try another night. Both this and SEAN skew older and might have done well on Fridays, but of course we’ll never know.

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