Kevin Can Wait, the sitcom that chose to kill off its titular character’s wife “out of respect,” is now itself being killed off. Oh the irony.
CBS has cancelled the show after two seasons—a move Deadline refers to as “one of the biggest casualties at CBS this season.” They report:
Fueled by the popularity of its star Kevin James and boosted by The Bing Bang Theory as a lead, Kevin Can Wait got off to a blazing start in fall 2016 and went on to become a sturdy Monday 8 PM anchor. The series ranked as the most watched and highest rated new comedy last season. But there was some ratings decline over the course of the season.
Additionally, midway through Season 1, the series parted ways with co-creator and showrunner Bruce Helford, who now steers ABC’s Roseanne revival. And after the end of last season, the show made a controversial casting change, letting go of original female lead Erinn Hayes, whose character was killed off, and bringing in James’ The Kings of Queens co-star Leah Remini.
The move had been acknowledged as a mistake. Viewers did not take it well, and ratings for Kevin Can Wait posted steep declines in Season 2, sending the series from the top of the heap to the bubble list.
Sad for the people who worked on the show, but a victory for the deceased wife and a lesson therein: don’t let your leading lady go. RIP Donna.