Why aren’t we getting The Last Ship season 6 over at TNT? The finale is airing tonight, and now certainly seems to be the right time to be asking this question.
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Unfortunately, the decision to end the show with season 5 was decided a good while ago — think many months before the fifth season even premiered. With that being said however, it was not 100% decided at the end of season 5 production. We don’t think the writers had the chance to plot a full final season in the way that they could have otherwise if they knew for sure it was wrapping up. While they may have been marginally aware of the possibility, a possibility is no assurance.
Alas, the biggest reason that we’re not getting a season 6 seems to be one related to the series low ratings. While the ratings were at one point pretty great for The Last Ship, they have declined steadily over time — you can blame the lack of promotion for it if you want but it still doesn’t change facts. The live+same-day ratings for season 5, at least in the all-important 18-49 demographic, are down more than 25% from the ratings for season 4. Meanwhile, season 4 was down more than 35% from season 3, which was down around 30% from season 2. Think about things this way — season 5 is averaging just over a 0.2 rating, while season 2 was averaging a 0.7 rating. The series has lost a significant chunk of its viewership (at least in live viewing), over the better part of a few years. That’s always a recipe for an untimely end.
Beyond just this, remember the fact that this is an action-heavy series that probably does carry with it a rather-hefty cost compared to some other cable shows that are out there. Gunfights and filming on battleships costs a good chunk of change and that makes it even harder to keep things going for a season 6.
We’re not bummed about the fact that the fifth season is the series’ last since it’s had a great run of stories; we just wish that there was more foresight and a chance for a full, proper final season that had more of that feel to it.
Could there be a season 6 down the line?
Our feeling at the moment is this: Never say never. There’s always hope for something more, but for the time being, it feels reasonably unlikely that this is going to happen here. It’s just hard to fathom a scenario where TNT would bring it back given the ratings drop and, beyond that, it’s also rather hard to envision that another network would pick it up. There’s nothing to be too disappointed about when it comes to the series’ run, and regardless of how the show ends, there should be a great sense of pride that many viewers feel about the journey as a whole.
Are you disappointed that The Last Ship season 6 is not the final one on TNT? Be sure to share now in the comments. (Photo: TNT.)