Following last night’s finale, what does the future look like in terms of a Murphy Brown season 12?
First and foremost, we should look at the renewal prospects from a ratings point of view. We don’t think that the revival necessarily delivered the ratings knockout-punch that CBS may have been hoping to have going into it. We think that they expected it to make a little bit of a larger splash than it did. While the ratings weren’t down significantly from all of their other comedies, they may decide to move on to other ventures.
One thing we do want to make clear here, though, is that the plan for Murphy Brown season 11 was that it was always meant to be just 13 episodes. This is not the case of a show being denied some sort of back-nine episode order on the other side because of low ratings.
If the ratings are sufficient and CBS wants more episodes, then things shift over to the creative side of things. Are there still some more stories to tell, and topics to really dive into from this world? This seems to be something that show executive producer Diane English is already looking at. Speaking via The Hollywood Reporter, she makes it clear that there are some stories she wants to tell, but the political nature of things remains to be seen:
It depends on what’s going on. If there’s [another season] for us, we wouldn’t be back in the writers room until May. That’s six months from now, so who knows what kind of situation we’d be in. I don’t think I would want to be more political, but certainly the show has always been flinty and sharp in its approach to things. Our main thing is, can we make it funny? Can we make people laugh and at the same time get them to think about something? Especially in this era of Fox News when so many people are just getting their information from one source, and that source is so biased. And the same with CNN.
This is how people are getting their information now. I think I’d like to do something revolving around the whole bias situation. I’ve already got a yellow pad going with a ton of stuff I’m interested in pursuing, and not all of it is political. There’s a lot of real personal stories I think I’d like to tell, and I think we hinted at some of them in the finale — a lot of fun stuff and some new stuff for Avery. There’s just a lot of stories to tell on that level, too.
Given when the writers’ room for the show would open, we imagine that at some point in the mid-spring CBS will make a firm decision on the series’ future. There are a number of different factors that could be looked at here, including the ratings for this season and the performance of the comedies at midseason. We also do think that CBS will remind themselves that The Big Bang Theory is ending and that leaves room for another comedy.
Do you want to see more Murphy Brown following the big finale of the CBS show? Be sure to share right now in the attached comments. (Photo: CBS.)