Stop us when this sounds familiar: Syfy has canceled something.
This time, the victim is “The Wil Wheaton Project,” the talk / comedy show hosted by the former “Star Trek: The Next Generation” actor that featured celebrity guests and all sorts of discussion on the best in nerd news for the week and other topical issues. Really, it was the perfect sort of alternative programming for the network, and it couldn’t have been with someone who appealed more to the target demographic.
Wheaton himself first announced the news in a blog post, recounting a discussion that he had with an unnamed network executive:
“Ultimately, he told me, the executives in New York just didn’t think we had enough viewers to justify more episodes. I didn’t say anything about the total lack of promotion off the network, or point out that our ratings were on par with The Soup, or that ratings are always lower in summer than the fall. I didn’t bother saying any of that, because I know he knows that. I was reasonably confident that he made those arguments with New York when he was trying to get the show renewed. I presume he fought hard for us, but ultimately couldn’t sway executives in New York who never seemed — in my opinion — to really understand what kind of show we were doing, who I was and why I was hosting it, and how to engage with and promote to the audience who would like it.”
Just to make sure we’re not dogpiling the wrong person here, Wheaton made it clear that the executive he spoke with about this cancellation was “a good guy in an industry full of bad guys,” and he believes that he did fight hard for the show to stay.
We do give Syfy (and A&E at the moment) a good bit of grief for canceling shows, mostly because we really feel like they almost owe it to paying customers to let some of their shows find an audience. The reason we’re especially not a fan of this decision is because this is the sort of show the really needs to build that following over time. It’s hard to find room in the talk market right away, and it would’ve at least been nice of the show had stuck around long enough for “The Big Bang Theory” to come back on the air. While there would’ve been no way for Wil to get in a shoutout if he ever made another guest appearance (Syfy and CBS are owned by different people), it would have been extra publicity.
Anyway, this news bums us out, just as it does anytime that a good show goes. Hopefully, something else nice will come Wheaton’s way soon.
For now, just be sure to share your reactions in the comments, and head over here for some further TV scoop right now via our CarterMatt Newsletter.