Tuesday, February 04, 2014
The best show of the series got the series cancelled
Side note: Bernie & Jeff worked on ROSEANNE for a time. When they quit Jeff took out a full-page ad in the trades – an open letter to the cast and crew that said, "My wife and I have decided to share a vacation in the peace and quiet of Beirut.”
But I digress…
When shows are bordering on cancellation they do whatever they can to stave off execution. Some appeal directly to viewers, enlist letter-writing campaigns, etc. With ALMOST PERFECT the first year we went back to all the TV critics who gave us good reviews and asked if they would do follow-up stories. Many did and that helped. We were renewed.
Bernie & Jeff argued that they were really starting to find the show and that a few of the yet-to-air episodes were really terrific. If CBS gave the series a chance, audiences would eventually find it. Paley was in Los Angeles on business and planned to fly back to New York on the corporate jet. He agreed to watch a couple of the upcoming episodes on the flight.
So off he went into the wild blue yonder with a couple of tapes. He popped in the first episode. I don’t know the details of storyline but it had something to do with someone dying, a funny funeral, hijinks with caskets, whatever. Apparently it was extremely funny – their best show.
William Paley’s wife had died recently. By the time they were over Nebraska the show was cancelled.
Talk about “oops!” I’m just glad it wasn’t ours.