The release of Fox’s fall lineup sent fans of Last Man Standing into a frenzy when it was discovered that their beloved Tim Allen comedy was missing from its typical Friday night slot.
Fortunately, Deadline – as well as Allen himself, via social media – have reassured fans that the series has not been canceled. In fact, Season 8 is slated to premiere next year, in January.
As those who have watched the show during its seven-season spread across both ABC and Fox know, this will be the first time since the series premiered its very first episode that it will not make an appearance during the fall season.
The network’s decision to bump Last Man Standing had nothing to do with a viewership issue. In fact, the series has had solid ratings since it was first purchased — and revived — by Fox. There were technically a few reasons why Fox made the decision, per Deadline.
For starters, the network is making room for WWE’s SmackDown Live. Bringing in two different types of audiences, Fox wanted to find better alternatives to pair with Last Man Standing.
“We set some comedy goals, one of which was ramping up our animation lineup; that was our No. 1 comedy target,” Fox Entertainment President Michael Thorn explained during Fox’s upfront call on Monday morning. Thorn went on to reveal that this plan included ordering three new animated comedies.
“One of the other goals was to find a new companion to Last Man Standing,” which the network found in new “family sitcom Outmatched,” Thorn added.
— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) May 13, 2019
While Friday nights are notorious for bringing in less viewers than any other day of the week for Fox, it didn’t stop Last Man Standing from becoming Fox’s second-most-watched and third-highest-rated scripted series.
On average, the series pulled in 11 million viewers across multiple platforms.
Allen took to his Twitter account on Monday evening to reassure his 402,000 followers that the decision to move the series to Thursday night — and bump it from the fall season — was not a mistake. Allen echoed Thorn’s claims that the network was “teeing us up” for a smashing “comedy night” on Thursday.
In NYC at the Fox Network upfronts.
Big news and kinda cool they are moving LMS to Thursday. So after football Thursdays are done they are teeing us up for a big Thursday comedy night.
— Tim Allen (@ofctimallen) May 13, 2019
In less than 48 hours, Allen’s tweet was met with over 200 comments, 400 retweets, and 5,100 likes. Many agreed that the shift from Friday to Thursday would probably open the door for even higher ratings. Others admitted that they were just itching for the Season 8 premiere.
— Tim Allen (@ofctimallen) May 10, 2019
While fans will have to wait for 2020 to roll around to watch Last Man Standing Season 8, previous seasons are available via Hulu.