Smash has officially been canceled by NBC, following a disappointing second season deemed a “complete disaster” by series creator Theresa Rebeck.
The second season of the Broadway musical drama premiered to 4.48 million viewers on February 5, 2013, a series low at the time. But the audience quickly plummeted to a new series low of 1.80 million for the April 13 episode, “The Dress Rehearsal.” Smash has continued to struggle in the ratings ever since.
Part of Smash‘s downfall can be attributed to the number of schedule changes the series has undergone. The second season started off on Tuesdays at 10, but was later moved to Saturdays at 9 pm. The series was later moved up an hour to 8 pm, where it will finish out its remaining episodes.
The same fate has befallen fellow NBC series Rock Center with Brian Williams, which bounced around between four different timeslots in just two seasons before settling down at Fridays at 10 pm, which Williams jokingly foreshadowed as its “final resting place.”
But the schedule changes and failing ratings weren’t the only nails in Smash‘s coffin, although all the reasons behind the show’s demise go hand-in-hand with each other. Because of the schedule changes, Smash lost its lead-in, The Voice, which helped boost the ratings in season 1. Add to that far-fetched storylines and major creative changes, and it’s practically a miracle Smash‘s swan song wasn’t sung sooner.
The cast took the news of the cancellation in stride, thanking fans for their support and NBC for the opportunity.
Thk u to everyone who watched Smash!Been an amazing ride. & thanks to @nbc 4 the opportunity 2 play a great gal such as Karen. So grateful
— Katharine McPhee(@katharinemcphee) May 11, 2013
But in all seriousness, I love Smash, am so grateful to its fans, had the time of my life working with such talent and will never forget it!
— Andy Mientus (@andymientus) May 11, 2013
THANK YOU 2 all the #smash fans for your love and faith. I LOVED our show, our cast, the music and dance, and will 4ever B grateful & proud
— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) May 11, 2013
The two-hour series finale of Smash will air Sunday, May 26.
Are you disappointed that Smash has ben canceled? Or did you see the end coming?