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Old 03-01-2006, 06:30 PM   #1
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Default How come it was cancelled in 1981?

What was the reason for the show being cancelled in 1981?
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Old 03-02-2006, 12:40 AM   #2
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i think the rumor was that one of the network execs just didnt like the show, and they were afraid of the salaries for such a large cast getting out of control...
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Old 03-03-2006, 01:49 AM   #3
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ignorance, no less than ignorance.
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Old 03-20-2007, 01:18 AM   #4
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I doubt that the network didn't like it. It was, however, a very expensive show to produce with a big cast. Witt-Thomas-Harris alrrady had Benson going and it was cheaper to produce. I think SOAP had reached 92 episodes by then, just barely enough for a couple of syndicated runs which could make back some of the money spent.
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Old 04-02-2007, 07:35 AM   #5
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ABC actually liked the show and supported it for a long time at something of a loss. By 1981, however, there was only one remaining advertiser who would sponsor the show, and that was too great a financial loss. Witt-Thomas-Harris praises ABC to this day for it sommitment, and they admit that upon seeing the financial picture in 1981, they felt no bitterness toward the network over the cancellation. Nice to hear a rare pro-network account.
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Old 04-08-2007, 05:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerThornhill
ABC actually liked the show and supported it for a long time at something of a loss. By 1981, however, there was only one remaining advertiser who would sponsor the show, and that was too great a financial loss. Witt-Thomas-Harris praises ABC to this day for it sommitment, and they admit that upon seeing the financial picture in 1981, they felt no bitterness toward the network over the cancellation. Nice to hear a rare pro-network account.

I think the falling ratings could be one of the reasons

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Old 04-10-2007, 02:45 PM   #7
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They still could have done a final show to tie up the loose ends. IDIOTS
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Old 04-10-2007, 06:25 PM   #8
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They still could have done a final show to tie up the loose ends. IDIOTS

There probably was no FINAL show because they had and no idea they were getting cancelled
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Old 04-11-2007, 10:05 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robyrob
i think the rumor was that one of the network execs just didnt like the show, and they were afraid of the salaries for such a large cast getting out of control...
I always wondered how the hell they could afford to pay that many people.
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Old 04-11-2007, 11:47 PM   #10
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Not that it was necessarily a factor, but the quality of the show had also dropped a bit in Seasons 3 and 4. S4 in particular was medicore, thanks to the departure of Susan Harris. I imagine the low quality of the shows helped contribute to the decline in ratings.

Also, if you want a guage into how committed ABC was to the show, take a look at the days it was on the air. In S1, it was put in the very hot Tuesday, which was the equivalent of Thursdays for NBC in the 80's and 90's. (Tuesdays also had hits such as Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Taxi & Three's Company). IN S2 & 3, it was on Thursdays. In its last season, it ran on Wednesdays, and then Mondays. Usually, such moves are indicative of a lack of dedication to the show (Newsradio being a prime example of this).
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Old 04-16-2007, 09:53 PM   #11
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Here's my question (and I apologize if I've asked this before--I can't seem to remember if I did!)--did the cast know the show was cancelled before they shot the last episode? I am guessing they didn't, because the announcer ends the last episode the same way he always did before, by saying to tune into the next episode of Soap for answers to questions that remained.

Unless that was just part of the plan; to make it seem as though it was a continuing saga even though we wouldn't ever see a true final episode where all the loose ends were tied up.
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Old 04-17-2007, 08:38 AM   #12
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Susan Harris has stated many times that they did not know about the cancellation until after the shows had all been shot. She said that they would never have done that to people, and would certainly have created a more satisfactory conclusion for the characters. Similarly, although other endings were written, and perhaps even filmed, for Benson, they went with the cliffhanger because at the time of the airing, the series' future was as yet undetermined.
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Old 06-06-2008, 04:27 PM   #13
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Sure the quality of the shows slipped in the last season.

But the real reason it was cancelled was the emergence of Reagan conservatism and the Moral Majority in the White House in the early 80's, overtaking the more liberal 70's. That's why a quality show could get cancelled - because it was controversial and because of politics, not because it was bad TV.

In the 70's, Archie Bunker could be portrayed as ignorant, bigoted buffoon and be percieved as such. It is no coincidence that beginning in 1982 Alex P. Keaton became a national idol, rather than the comic relief he was originally designed to be.
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Old 07-16-2008, 01:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BensonFan
I always wondered how the hell they could afford to pay that many people.
Me, too.
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Old 08-21-2008, 12:24 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipsaugratin
Sure the quality of the shows slipped in the last season.

In the 70's, Archie Bunker could be portrayed as ignorant, bigoted buffoon and be percieved as such. It is no coincidence that beginning in 1982 Alex P. Keaton became a national idol, rather than the comic relief he was originally designed to be.
That in itself was scary.
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