NBC has cancelled comedy series A.P. Bio. The show is approaching the end of its second season, with four episodes left to air. The show’s future had been up in the air for awhile, particularly from being one of a number of shows whose fate was still undecided before NBC’s upfront presentation to advertisers two weeks ago, and this now confirms the show’s fate.
The creation of Saturday Night Live writer and performer Mike O’Brien, A.P. Bio follows philosophy professor Jack Griffin as he's forced to move back to his hometown and teach high school biology. Rather than actually doing the job he's been hired for, he instead uses the intellect and talent of his students to work towards psychologically dismantling his professional rival and stealing his job as head of philosophy at Stanford University.
The news that A.P. Bio has been cancelled was first revealed on the Twitter feed of series creator O’Brien. He expressed his sadness at the development, and his wish for anyone who hasn’t seen the show to check it out online. The outpouring of disappointment from fans was quick and extensive, showing how much it'll be missed among those who watched it.
I'm intensely sad to announce that AP Bio will be ending after this season. This has been my favorite project of my life and that's because of the amazing writers, cast and crew. As most canceled shows probably feel, I think we were just hitting our stride and everyone was still— Mike O'Brien (@MikeOBrienXOXO) May 25, 2019
loving the work, so this is very hard. We have 4 left to air and they're 4 of my favorites. Plus 22 others are on Hulu (for now) and https://t.co/wUeZQNY5WZ. Please check them out and tell a friend about the show and tell the people who worked on it that they did a good job!— Mike O'Brien (@MikeOBrienXOXO) May 25, 2019
A.P. Bio received a mixed reception from critics, with most of them agreeing that the show had a great deal of potential due to its promising central premise and the strength of its ensemble cast, but also that its style of comedy was a little too abrasive and mean-spirited to find much more than a niche audience, despite series star Glenn Howerton making a name for himself in a similar vein as the sociopathic Dennis Reynolds from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. The fans, meanwhile, became deeply invested in the show’s varied assortment of characters, many of whom were personal favorites among viewers that they saw parts of themselves in.
Everybody has different things that they enjoy in entertainment, and comedy in particular has always been and will always continue to be completely subjective to the viewer, meaning that each show continues to exist largely at the whim of its audience. It was a commendable attempt for A.P. Bio to attempt to mine comedy from the absurdity of its situations rather than dialogue specifically crafted to be funny, with the show being particularly notable for its absence of a laugh track, but the problem seemed to be that the actual humor it put forward wasn’t to everyone’s liking. Nevertheless, the reliability of the show’s quality is reflected in that after its first couple of episodes, when people decided whether or not they were going to take to it, the audience figures only mildly fluctuated, indicating a regular viewership and a loyal, if somewhat small, fanbase. There's always the possibility that a large enough fan uproar might bring the show back, but for now the number of people actually watching A.P. Bio was a little too small to allow it to continue.
Source: Mike O’Brien