The Deception finale and the sadness that comes with losing it

The Deception finale is airing on ABC come Sunday night and, alas, we’re in a position now where we are starting at the end of the series on the horizon. Despite being billed by and large by ABC as a season-ender, there is at the moment no clear sign that this show is going to get another life elsewhere.

Should it? We do think so, which is what makes the prospect of it ending now so sad. Deception is one of those series that is a clear reminder of why networks should consider more making a two-season commitment to some of their new properties in order to test them out — even if it means shifting the second season to the summer / to Fridays if it didn’t perform all that well in season 1.

When looking at the Deception ratings alone, we’re not surprised to see it in this place. Networks don’t just look at average ratings — they look at trajectory, and it’s fair to say that Deception was trending down. The series premiered with a 1.2 rating in the 18-49 demographic and over the past six or so weeks, we’ve seen it fluctuate between a 0.6 and 0.8. If it had hovered more around a 0.8 and 1.0 the rest of the season, we probably wouldn’t see it in this place. We’d probably say the same thing if the series hailed from ABC Studios, which gives the network more of a financial incentive to keep it. However, because it is coming via an outside studio like Warner Bros. TV, it’s a little easier to cancel it. It’s also more challenge for WBTV to find a new home given that they don’t have a dedicated network for their programming. While they are a part owner in The CW, Deception isn’t really a good fit there with the other programming that they have.

We would still love to see Deception end up elsewhere but, unfortunately, there hasn’t been too much buzz on that just yet. This was a show that needed that second season probably to really hone its premise and show off some of that true potential. Some of what it had was a very fun, innovative take on your standard crime procedural, and you also had a showrunner in Chris Fedak who proved on Chuck that he has a real knack for building up character arcs over time. While there are some canceled shows that you quickly forget, this is one that we hope viewers remember for a while since there was so much potential there. It would’ve been a perfect summer show for season 2, especially if ABC’s upcoming Take Two gets renewed. We’re not sure there are two series out there that compliment each other better.

Of course, we’ll be back on Sunday night with more from the Deception finale.

Love TV? Be sure to like Matt & Jess on Facebook for more updates!