‘Almost Human’ Gets Canceled – Is Fox Biased Against Sci-Fi?

Published 6 months ago by

almost human premiere review Almost Human Gets Canceled   Is Fox Biased Against Sci Fi?

It feels like we’ve been here before; Fox unleashes a high-concept look into the future or the unknown onto our television sets, only to pull the plug when said show eventually settles into a grey zone where it draws more than enough viewers to rise above the distinction of being labeled a bust, but well under what it would need to be declared a hit.

It happened with Terra Nova, and now it has happened with Almost Human; another show dead and gone because Fox seemingly doesn’t want another Fringe on their hands – i.e.,  another show that struggles to justify its existence, bleeding money as the network carries it across the syndication threshold, all while being vilified by fans who think the network hates sci-fi.

Producer JH Wyman worked on Fringe for 4 seasons, so he knows a little bit about that show’s constant struggle to stay on the air. One would forgive Wyman if he had hoped for an easier path to glory with Almost Human - a sci-fi procedural with outstanding chemistry between its stars (Karl Urban and Michael Ealy); a more accessible concept (an authority-bucking cop and his robot sidekick tackle crime in the technologically advanced future); and a broader sensibility. But maybe the show was too accessible.

fringe season 5 black blotter Almost Human Gets Canceled   Is Fox Biased Against Sci Fi?

Lets face it, Fringe required discipline and dedication. If you missed an episode or a run of episodes, you had to catch up or you would be forever confused by the show’s deeply woven twists and turns. In many ways, that’s what networks crave – appointment TV, like Lost – but sometimes that feels like an obligation; and from the outside looking in, it can be imposing to think about giving a show like that a chance as a first-time viewer, when it’s already in the middle of its run. Almost Human, on the other hand, seemed like something you could miss for a week without getting lost – but while that can be good for a viewer, it can also be bad for a show: with so many other options, viewers can lose their way back and forget about a show entirely.

This is all anecdotal, but it would seem like viewers did indeed forget about Almost Human as the season went on, with the show finishing up with a 1.5 rating in the 18-49 demo after drawing a 3.1 and 2.3 rating on successive nights when it premiered in two parts last November.

It’s worth pointing out that, on average, Almost Human  got better ratings than The Following, and Fox stalwarts like Bones and Glee, but it’s vital that we remember that each show lives in its own universe that is formed by its cost, momentum, acclaim, ownership, and nearness to syndication. So while it’s easy to point to Almost Human and think that the show got the short end of the stick by comparison, that determination is often made without examining the full picture.

almost human fox Almost Human Gets Canceled   Is Fox Biased Against Sci Fi?

Yes, The Following‘s ratings have been trending down all season, to the point where they are on par with Almost Human, but The Following still generates a lot of buzz, it’s a season closer to syndication, and it almost certainly has to be cheaper for Fox and Warner Bros. to produce.

Really, despite the complaints that Fox has it out for sci-fi shows (do they, though? As many have pointed out, the network greenlights an awful lot of these shows), this is just business and Fox couldn’t risk pumping more money into Almost Human only to see the show’s ratings drop further, prompting an equally harsh end early next year. Is that kind of risk averse thinking a bit defeatist and do we long for the era when networks would allow shows to grow? A bit and of course, but in this  climate, big projects need to get big results and that just didn’t happen with Almost Human.

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Stay tuned to Screen Rant for all the news you need on this year’s cancellations, pick-ups, and more.

Source: Deadline

 

 

 

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  1. “Just Business”. That’s why I’ve stopped investing my time and energy toward FOX projects.

    • Well-said, and I feel the same damn way.

  2. Perhaps if FOX had an ounce of intelligence amongst it’s army of overpaid suits they would have shown the series in the correct order! Instead we get a convoluted mess where there is no sense of continuity. In one episode we see Keennex and Dorian getting along like the best of friends the next they’re at arms length again. How can FOX expect ANY series to get good numbers when they make it so hard to build a following by making the shows relationships between it’s characters confusing and unbelievable because their shared experiences are all over the place. Admittedly this wasn’t an instant hit but the chemistry between the main characters and suggestions of of where the series could be taken in the future in my opinion warranted at least another season. Now we will never know what was the other side of “the wall” or what exactly happened to the world that meant there was a “New Tokyo” and “New Pittsburgh”. Thee was so much room to expand the world of almost human that with a couple more ideas and slightly better writing this could have been a smash for FOX but never mind I’m sure we’ll get more mindless drones whose own lives are so empty and pathetic they need a team of writers to make them interesting enough to go on “reality” TV. Personally if i were the shows creator I’d sue FOX for destruction of intellectual property. I urge anyone who liked the show to join the numerous online petitions going around. At the same time anyone who kind of liked it try watching it again in it’s intended order and you will see a vast improvement over the debacle that FOX turned it in to. Rant over.

  3. To me it is all about the schedule. It’s like I get into a show, they have it going for a few weeks and then they take a break. If I come back and check next week and the show isn’t on then I forget about checking the next week and my interest wanes. It would probably get more viewers if they didn’t mess with air times, and kept them consistent throughout the season.

  4. I really liked this TV show. Some other network should pick it up

  5. I really LIKE this show. If Fox won’t keep it, I hope maybe the scifi channel would. Bummer!

  6. What the…
    I recently discovered the series (not that known in Germany :P) and they are NOT making another season??
    Are you kidding me?

    I absolutely loved the great chemistry between Karl and Michael, it was so heartwarming and fun to listen to them.

    and once again FOX shuts down a series with such great potential..
    I want to know what’s going on with insyndicate, the wall, all the rest!!!!!!

    JESUS!!!! WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO ME FOX??

    this show was especially life saving since it was what kept me thrilled through the day, because I am fully packed learning for exams. And I knew I could watch Kennex and Dorian do cool stuff in the evening…
    ;-(
    I am really upset.

  7. Yet another great sci-fi show cancelled. If it wasnt for falling skies season 4 i would never watch fox again. But that been said how long before that is cancelled.
    Lets all buy this on dvd/download and turn it into a firefly, we might get a movie or another network might pick it up. here hoping.

  8. I loved fringe I was sad to see it go and I like almost human I hope u can give it another another chance

  9. I really liked this show didn’t miss one. I miss it wish they would bring it back…even got my husband hooked and hates my Sci-Fi.

  10. best show around, why cancel all the good ones and replace them with damn reality s*** shows, all about money now, thought they were in the business of entertainment? not omg more repeat crap…

  11. I didn’t watch this show until the end, I got bored halfway into the season. I could go on and on about how professional producers just make the same mistakes over and over again. They launch a new show, sci-fi stuff, interesting setting (same with Terra Nova), then turn it into an episodic crime-solving (or family) drama, and fill it with hundreds of cliches. Then the ratings go bad, so they cancel. Next year, they will do the same with an other show, after spending millions on analyzing why it happens. Lost, 24, breaking bad, game of thrones, etc, the succesful not-a-sitcom shows, both network and cable are all wrapped around a contionous storyline.

    • The show runners do it to placate the network, who want each episode to be self contained so the show has a lower barrier to entry to improve ratings. This helps in the short term, but turns off viewers of smarter shows with longer, continuous storyline.

      Btw, of the shows you mentioned, the only one on Fox was 24. And frankly the entire concept for the show was that it was episodic and self-contained. If it wasn’t so punch-you-in-the-face-spit-on-your-neck-America-rules fantastic, Fox would’ve canceled it as well once a real plot developed.

  12. This is why the role of Traditional networks is dying in favor of on demand content, and exclusive content from providers (instead of content creators) like Amazon and Netflix. Before long, instead of paying $250 a month for a line up of chanels I never watch, I’ll be able to pay directly for the content that’s imporant to me, like Almost Human. It stinks, because this was a great show, but if this is the sacrafice we have to make in order to finally dethrown the networks stranglehold on meaningful content – then it’s a sacrafice well made. The King is dead; long live the King!