Starring Matthew Perry and Thomas Lennon, the multi-camera comedy appeared ripe for cancellation in November, when CBS decided not to extend its 13-episode order. In its third season, the series averaged a 1.0 rating in the 18-49 demo and 5 million total viewers, according to Nielsen live-plus-same day data. Those numbers would be considered solid but unspectacular by the standards of some networks, but were low for CBS, whose comedies tend to rate higher than those of several competitors.
The latest adaptation of the 1965 play by Neil Simon, “The Odd Couple” starred Perry and Lennon as Oscar Madison and Felix Unger — the mismatched bachelor roommates portrayed by Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon in the 1968 film and by Jack Klugman and Tony Randall in the series that aired from 1970 to 1975 on ABC.
Produced by CBS Television Studios, “The Odd Couple” was executive produced by Perry, Eric Tannenbaum, Kim Tannenbaum, Sarah Timberman, and Carl Beverly.
CBS gave out 18 series renewals back in March, with “The Odd Couple” being one of the few shows not renewed at that time. The returning shows renewed to date include comedies such as “Big Bang Theory,” “Mom,” and “Life in Pieces”; dramas including “Blue Bloods” and “Madam Secretary”; newsmagazines “48 Hours” and “60 Minutes”; and reality series “Survivor.” “Big Brother” was previously renewed for two more seasons back in August.
In addition, five freshman shows were part of the network’s early renewals: dramas “Bull” and “MacGyver;” and comedies “Kevin Can Wait,” “Man With a Plan,” and “Superior Donuts.” On the pilot side, the network has picked up dramas “SEAL Team,” “Wisdom of the Crowd,” “SWAT,” and “Instinct,” along with previously announced comedy order “Young Sheldon” and “9JKL,” “Me, Myself, and I,” and “By the Book” from executive producer and “Big Bang” star Johnny Galecki.
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