It seems NBC's superhero drama The Cape has gotten it's inaugural season hemmed by the network: season one was originally slated for 13 episodes, but that number has now been reduced to 10.
Does this mean that the death of The Cape is imminent? More than likely, yes.
Deadline reports that production on the show will be immediately shut down, now that filming on episode 10 has wrapped. At this current time there is no word on whether or not the halted production is a "let's wait and see" type scenario, or a "let's cut our losses" decision. I'm placing my bet on the latter.
This report should come as no surprise, of course: The Cape has been a wounded animal limping on three legs ever since its solid series premiere. The show was always a questionable endeavor - a cheap knockoff secondhand version of the Batman mythos that had neither the brand recognition nor the support of an established fanbase to bolster it. Audiences quickly got tired of seeing a hokey story about a disgraced cop running around in a circus outfit (literally), and The Cape has been plummenting in the ratings ever since. The episode that aired this past Monday had the lowest viewership yet, and news that upcoming episodes will feature guest stars like Lil' Romeo is not likely to lure viewers.
The immediate question is how NBC will choose to air the remaining episodes of the show. Deadline points out that the network could push back the return of The Event (originally slated for February 28th) to March 7th, allowing The Cape to air the last of its episodes before likely vanishing from the airwaves in a puff of smoke (that's a Cape inside joke, for those wondering). This would likely be the best move - one that could allow the fans of The Cape who do exist to enjoy their show to an uninterrupted end. Plus, I don't know too many people who are begging for The Event to come back, so a week's delay probably wouldn't upset things too much (unless they've already printed up the promo materials for the show's return :-P).
Personally, I tried to get into The Cape but constantly found it sliding to the bottom of my DVR priority list until that big red exclamation point would coerce me into watching it before deletion. I've mostly used the show to fill the restless hours of night when I have trouble sleeping - and once a TV show is being used as a sleeping aid, you know it's probably time to put it out to pasture.
Look, if NBC wants to play in the superhero sandbox, it needs to stop investing in these short-lived "original" series like Heroes and The Cape. Marvel has new shows like The Hulk, Cloak and Dagger, and Jessica Jones on the way; while DC/Warner Bros. is working on shows like Wonder Woman and possibly Raven to air on the small screen. The superhero genre is alive on TV, but there are simply better heroes with better mythologies, and better minds in the comic book industry who could help guide them through development. Hell, NBC could've gone to Marvel and developed a Moon Knight series instead of The Cape and probably had more success with it... but I digress.
Sad that The Cape is likely meeting his end?
If you want to see the show crawl to its newly established finish line, you can tune in Mondays @ 9pm on NBC.