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CBS cancels Joan of Arcadia

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I just want to send a quick thanks to CBS for giving me absolutely no reasons to watch their pathetic network anymore: Joan of Arcadia has been cancelled. But thank god Yes, Dear is returning . . . whew, I was really worried about that one. (Yes, that’s sarcasm, people.)

Joan and Judging Amy, also cancelled, were among the lowest rated on the network in the “younger viewers” demographic that CBS wants to target. These people, of course, are the fickle, attention-span-of-a-gnat trend-hoppers who are also most likely to not be at home during Joan‘s Friday 8pm timeslot – but when a lot of families and older viewers are home. Whatever CBS puts in that Friday timeslot is likely to suffer the same fate – why not stick with something that already had a dedicated core audience?

The only thing I can say is thank God for Fox renewing Arrested Development and NBC for renewing The Office. Without these two, I’d only have two other reasons to watch TV: ABC’s Lost and WB’s Gilmore Girls. I would add NBC’s Scrubs, but the show’s been put on hiatus until NBC feels like putting it back on, you know, whenever.

In related news, Joan of Arcadia creator Barbara Hall’s sister, Karen, has a blog here that will likely be updated with more personal info about the frustrating cancellation.

Stop on by the beautiful lull for more media-related stuff, or my personal site, unproductivity.

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About Tom Johnson

  • I could never get into Joan of Arcadia…too sappy for me.

    A show that I found much better, with a passing similarity was Wonderfalls. It was cancelled after only a few episodes but the whole first season was released on DVD. Well-written, witty…with an engaging heroine/actress.

  • Agreed on Wonderfalls, Nicolette. Fox has apparently learned from that mistake, making sure to actually give Arrested Development a chance, thankfully.


    I thought the first season of Joan was exceptional, but starting immediately with the second season that it dropped off drastically. The dialogue took on the full Gilmore Girls style, and it seemed as if there was music playing too loudly over almost every scene’s dialogue too. Like maybe they were shooting for the teen market full force and forsaking the rest of the audience. Also, Joan got alot more unlikeable and that character Judith, her friend was a real drag, and a drain on the show. Definitely forcing things too much. Became more like all the other formulaic bull ca ca out there. Plus, they never used any Cattle Decapitation songs on the show. That’s really lame!

    Got the Wonderfalls DVD. Excellent program!

  • I’m pretty sure, Brick, that the whole reason JoA is being cancelled is for the fact that no Cattle Decapitation was used in the show. I hear they’re going to be all the rage on the OC next season.

    I do agree that season 2 of JoA was not as good as season one, but towards the end of the season they’d significantly improved the show (but I must admit the hints of the show turning into “Joan the Fallen Angel Slayer” in the final episode was a turn off. The changes you note were most likely in response to pressure from CBS to corner the teen market, which just wasn’t going to happen.

  • Steve

    I really enjoyed Joan, and though it was an excellent familly show with a positve message. I guess there was not enough sex and violence to keep it on the air.

  • kim

    Now I have no use for CBS at all. Joan was an intelligently written show that did a remarkable job weaving parallel stories of how faith, science, and basic morality co-exist. Why they had this show in a Friday night timeslot, who knows? I agree that anything else will capture that timeslot, and even if they moved the idiotic survivor there, IT would fail. I’m hoping some other network – maybe FOX will pick it up and stick it in the middle of the week in primtime.

  • joycelyn

    WHAT???!!!!! Joan of Arcadia CANCELLED??!! NOOOOOOOOOOO… This show has been my all-time favorite show. For me, it has been the last vestige of Anything-Markedly-Religious, that is public, to have any real meaning in my life. Since the infiltration of the Religious Conservatives into politics, and the politicians’ use and abuse of Christianity to further their own agendas, Joan of Arcadia has been my safe-house and has provided for me meaningful spiritual inspiration. Barbara Hall–you go, girl. THANK YOU so much for the last year.

  • I guess I am now down to about 4 shows that I actually watch every week. NYPD Blue, gone. Joan of Arcadia, gone.

    Joan of Arcadia was just a solid show. I wonder what the ratings were like? They kept on putting it on and then it would be gone for a long time. Maybe if they had been more consistent with the show’s output it would have done better in the ratings.

    Ah, well. Any news on the rest of this season or is it cancelled immediately?

  • The JoA season ended April 22, Craig. You’ll have to wait until (or IF) the DVD set for season 2 comes out for “more.”

  • Lola

    OMG!!!!!! Me and my friends are such freaks over this show! We love it!People have not taste in tv anymore……now i can only have Gilmore Girls, Everwood, reruns of Full House, reruns of Boy Meets World, and reruns of Friends to keep my attention because 7th Heaven is going down the drain and they just kicked off JoA the best show on TV!!!!!! again i say people have no taste in tv…this was a good show with a lot of drama that caught people’s attention! hopefully some other intelligent channel iwll pick it up!

  • When i first heard that Joan of Arcadia was cancelled i was shocked. I loved the show it portrayed how life really is and the characters were all uniquely different but still like your everyday people.Most shows are just too fake and they try and stay as far away from morality as possible. Joan of arcadia was a great show that didn’t shove anything down your throat. I was really looking forward to the next season.

  • cls

    Didn’t CBS see the outcome of the last election? Seems evident that people of conviction want to have a say in the way the world is viewed. JofA was a program that was thoughtful and entertaining. Seems that CBS also doesn’t realize that the baby-boomers are going to be the biggest older generation in history. Somehow they have more money than the so called “target audience.” Most of these people don’t eat worms. Joan of Arcadia was so good. Maybe one of the other, smarter networks will pick it up.

  • clg

    CBS has been removed from my remote. JOA was the best show that’s come on for quite some time. I suppose everyone want’s to watch a bunch of whorish desparate housewives? Fine, I’ll go back to DVD’s. CBS blows.

  • LR

    I was very disappointed to hear of the cancellation, but sadly, not surprised. Networks don’t support shows that don’t fit the “in” “hot” mode. God forbid we should have some variety on TV to counterbalance the abundance of junk and trash. The stories on JOA were intelligent and worthwhile; the actors superb. I wish the WB or FOX would pick up JOA and give it the chance it deserves. I hope Barbara Hall will keep trying; many of us appreciate the integrity of her work.

  • I wasn’t surprised either. But as good as the first season was, the 2nd season was not all that good. I think the only thing I really liked during the season was the lighting based on what story was being told.

  • Didn’t CBS see the outcome of the last election? Seems evident that people of conviction want to have a say in the way the world is viewed. JofA was a program that was thoughtful and entertaining. Seems that CBS also doesn’t realize that the baby-boomers are going to be the biggest older generation in history. Somehow they have more money than the so called “target audience.” Most of these people don’t eat worms. Joan of Arcadia was so good. Maybe one of the other, smarter networks will pick it up.

    people everyone must mail CBS and say you basters do not Cancell joan of arcadia!!!

    Wout Pennings
    From The Netherlands

    Dear Americans we are no crazy Dutch people the france and the Germans are more terrible belief me we Dutch love America

  • Randy Rayburn

    My question is what took them so long to cancel it? The chick playing Joan “She impressed me so much I can’t even rememebr her name” could not act!!! Everyone else on the show was great except her. Maybe it would have had a better chance if the had replaced her.

  • Summer McCabe

    The fall season on CBS has become a complete washout. I don’t think they should have cancelled “Joan of Arcadia” or “Judging Amy”. If they needed the time slot they should of just transferred the shows to another network. Joan should have been transferred over to the WB or UPN since that is where most of the dramas are anyway and they should have placed Amy on NBC at 9PM before Law & Order: SVU since they both have something to do with the law.

  • sandy

    I can’t believe they cancelled JoA! I have been waiting for it to come back on. First of all, Amber Tamblyn is a magnificent actress! Second, this was a great family show. We had great family shows growing up, and there isn’t enough now…I guess our children will grow up watching sleezy shows! As others have said, I have no reason to watch CBS anymore. I will keep my fingers crossed that some other network will pick it up.

  • Master Iddo The Seer

    Unbelieveable,CBS network is pathetic!just a nother way to keep God out of Public Veiw, banned the 10 commandments,banned religion from public veiw, yet show immoral shows with queers in it-You know what Usama Bin Laden was right we are the Great Satan!

  • Carol

    Why do ALL of these network people take off the GREAT programs??????????? We lost Joan of Arcadia and American Dreams. I for one am tired of all of these programs, which show so much crime. Don’t we get enough of that from all of the news broadcasts????????????? What is wrong with programs which show family life (both good and bad) and how people cope, but still manage to stay together. Why slot something for the younger groups, when they will mostly be out on dates or whatever. This season I have found very few programs which are funny and light hearted. Thank goodness for satelite programs where there is a better choice of programing. It has been ALL of the networks, ABC, CBS and NBC which have selected some really awful programing.

  • ontopofit

    The problem is that CBS and the other networks are only intersted in tapping into the younger audiences for one thing: Sales of goods for profit. Sure, profit is good but at what cost? The pursuit of profit for these folks comes at a price and that is: Quality. Have you seen the cheesey crap on the WB over the last several year. Heck, look at what Arcadia was replaced with: A woman who talks to dead people (J.L. Hewitt) non-other. A modelesque younger females that girls strive to be like. If these shows are the type of crap people watch on television, then we’re all in trouble as a nation. Dumbing down, that’s what it is.

  • Char Rangel

    I am so disappointed in yet another network just not getting it. JOAN OF ARCADIA was a show worth watching, as was ED and PROVIDENCE. They just don’t understand that it is folks such as myself, the baby boomers that stay home evenings, enjoying clean entertainment while sitting on our couches, the “teen” audience they so striveing to get on those reality shows. If another “brainless” reality show hit’s the air, I’ve got a big screen for sale for a buck if any one’s interested.

  • CBS is STUPID! This was a great show for a FRI night. I had been waiting for it’s return this season and went online only to find out it’s been cancelled! What’s wrong with you people? I feel betrayed like Joan did Adam cheated on her and she found out in debate class. I am thirty with two kids and this was one of my favorite shows.

  • Nancy

    Although it has been over 1 year since Joan of Arcadia has been off the air, I continue to miss it terribly! This is a Friday evening, which put me in mind of this program. I remember how I felt a kind of fulfillment in the rich tapestry of Joan’s family and school life. There is a true empty space in the evening now, though more than a year has passed. Many thoughtful programs have gone off the air–it appears “they” don’t want us to think too much or to question anything. That is scary and awfully sad indeed. I hope that Amber Tamblyn is doing fine as are Joe Mantegna and Mary Steenbergen. The cast was all so talented; they gave me great pleasure and food for thought. It is a loss for all of us that they are no longer in a series together. CBS was stupid to cancel this show!

  • Cara

    I just watched season 2 a Christmas present and realized how much I still miss Joan. Any chance Barbara Hall and the network would bring the cast back for an update? We did a morally good show with all the evil in this world!!

  • Pam

    I have been watching DVD’s of both seasons of ‘Joan of Arcadia’. I still can’t believe it was taken off the air. This was one of about three programs I actually enjoyed watching on TV. Was the program too moral? You took this off the air before there was even a hint of closure. What is wrong with CBS? I should have written sooner. May if enough people had written when it was first taken off, something would have been done about it.

  • Tracy

    I just recently discovered Joan of Arcadia (just a little late, lol) and have been watching episodes online. I sure wish it had not been cancelled! This show had a lot of heart in it.