Fall's First Cancellation: NBC Axes Playboy Club

Trivial Pursuit enthusiasts, take note: The first official cancellation of the 2011-12 TV season is… NBC’s The Playboy Club!

The Peacock net announced Monday that it was pulling the low-rated, period drama off the air after three low-rated episodes.

Prime Suspect repeats will take over the Monday at 10 pm perch until Rock Center with Brian Williams debuts on Oct. 31.

NBC Orders Full Seasons of Up All Night and Whitney

This drama, starring Eddie Cibrian and Amber Heard, chronicled the goings-on at the infamous Playboy Club in 1960s Chicago. New NBC president Robert Greenblatt put a ton of promotional muscle behind the show, but audiences remained uninterested. Last night’s final broadcast averaged just over 3 million viewers.

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244 Comments
  1. Cat says:

    This is sad news. I was really enjoying the show. It was a great escape for an hour. I thought it may have at least gotten a little more time.

  2. George says:

    What this show needs is to be on HBO/Showtime. Nobody wants to watch a show about the playboy club and not see any nudity. Sorry but it’s 100% true.

    that and terrible actors (eddie cibrian? cmon…) Only nice thing about this show was Amber. Gorgeous.

  3. Ashley says:

    I thought the show was pretty decent, but the marketing was all wrong. They portrayed it as if it was a scandalously sexy show that men could mindlessly watch, when in reality it was more about the mob and murder; much more like a soap opera, which is mostly marketed towards middle aged women (unsurprisingly, my grandmother loved it). It’s 100x better than Whitney, that’s for sure. But I’m surprised that so many are saying TPC is better than Pan Am… I definitely don’t think so.

  4. Emily says:

    I can’t help thinking that if it had a different name it might still be around, despite what the PTC might say about it, it was actually quite a good show, and i was just starting to get into it, just most people didn’t give it a chance, ahh well same can be said about most cancelled shows right

    • Lacey says:

      The name of a show can influence people to watch or not watch. I love Cougar Town but apparently people are turned off by the name. As for The Playboy Club, it was partly the name that had me not tuning in. First I thought it was all going to be about playboy, then hearing EC was starring in it just made me even more determined not to watch it. By the time I found out the plot I just didn’t care anymore. I’m sorry for the fans, because it always sucks when a show you enjoy is canceled.

  5. bmo says:

    I dunno what’s up with NBC. This is a show that should have been on two-three years ago. They keep missing on shows. They got to be more cutting edge. oh well, the show had the potential but fell flat. How in the hell in Whitney get a full season order? They need to bet big with a big TV EP name. Maybe they need to hire different ad people.

  6. tami says:

    How sad that NBC succumbed to cry outs that sound like the 50″s about indecency. What’s next husband and wife sleeping in separate beds. Turtlenecks and bras for women to sleep in?Has NBC not looked at what is on TV lately including 2 1/2 men first episode w/Ashton K? Such a shame. All the prudishness and denial that kids are really much smarter these days then ever. Another “news” talk show…arghhhhhhh!!!!

  7. TheFinalMan says:

    Despite the initial implausible killing (why wouldn’t the guy STOP raping when a guy came in to stop him from raping?), it was a decent show. And Eddie Cibrian is effin’ HOT.

  8. Danny says:

    This is going to be another tough time slot for NBC. They made some traction last season with 11 million viewers who watched “Harry’s Law.” Now that show’s audience has eroded in a tough slot against ABC’s Emmy-winning “Modern Family” and CBS’s stalwart “Criminal Minds.” The network should consider relocating “Harry’s Law” back to this slot. 7 million viewers is better than anything else (aside from “SVU”) in ANY of their 10:00 slots.

  9. Annie says:

    Greenblatt cancelled Law&Order: LA to make room on the schedule for Playboy Club. That sure didn’t work. NBC should have kept L&O:LA. It was getting better and with the L&O DNA it never was going to be a bad show. (yes, I’m still bitter about the cancellation.)

  10. Erika says:

    That’s a damper on my spirits. The Playboy Club hooked me after three episodes when most shows have to get to a second season these days before figuring out what they’re doing. I think the cast is great too.

  11. T says:

    They showed re-runs of “Whitney” on one of the NBC cable affiliates and re-runs of it on NBC itself this last week. If that show had done so well out of the gate, they wouldn’t have needed to try so hard to get people to watch it. Why couldn’t they have done the same for TPC??? At least move it to a better time slot. With a cast that talented, they needed to give it a better shot. And say what you will about Eddie Cibrian. His personal life is whatever it is but that face of his deserves to be on TV. Ditto Amber Heard and Naturi Naughton.

  12. LeAnn says:

    Well I guess there goes any chances of me watching shows on NBC after Chuck’s season is finished. I gave TPC a chance and was actually starting to enjoy it!

  13. bmo says:

    The problem is that NBC has no tone with their shows. ABC has a certain tone, same with CBS,FOX, and CW. NBC shows have no tone.

  14. Dee says:

    3 million viewers? Gasp!!

    Most CW programs would kill for those numbers. Sometimes it’s a good thing that the CW exists :P

  15. Caylin says:

    WOW this is really redic… honestly cancelation after 3 episodes the show hasn’t even got to the climax… what’s wrong with NBC… I am shocked that people didn’t pick this up… It is a great story line and would of made great tv. Super sad and disappointed.

  16. Sarah says:

    I’m just waiting for ABC to axe something so Cougar Town can come back early.

  17. James says:

    I was really enjoying this show, it had a different vibe about it and it tastefully did the playboy bunnies without gratuitous nudity which many shows seem to go for these days.

    It was up against a lot of other good shows on a monday night (lots of comedy, castle and now terra nova too) it was never going to do well on a monday night. Should have switched it to a different night and see how it fared.

    US networks have a nasty habit of cancelling shows just because they aren’t performing well. At least let it run for a full season! All you’re replacing it with are repeats, seriously!

  18. @Bstar_71 says:

    IM IM SO DAMN PISSED THIS WAS ONE OF THE BEST SHOWS ON TV THIS FALL. IT HAD DRAMA HEART INTRIGUE ALL THE INGREDIENTS NEEDED TO GRAB AN AUDIENCE. IF NBC HAD PROMOTED THIS AS MUCH AS ABC PROMOTE THE LACK LUSTER PAN AM WHICH I ALSO LOVE WE WOULD NOT BE HAVING THIS ISSUE. DAMN YOU NBC!…NOW WHERE CAN I BUY THE FULL SEASON I STILL WANT TO KNOW WHATS HAPPENS.

    HIT ME ON TWITTER @BSTAR_71 IF YOU AGREE.

  19. Nate says:

    So, next to fall should be Charlie’s Angels, then.

  20. Rebecca says:

    This is actually good news, since Playboy Club was a real crapfest.

  21. Midori says:

    The show got 3 million viewers! Even for NBC that is horrible! So of course the show got canceled.

  22. Géraldine says:

    I bet that the next show cancelled will be “Charlie’s Angels”, the ABC’s remake, which doesn’t stop falling since its premiere!

  23. Buck says:

    They don’t even give a show a chance.

  24. Hannah says:

    Such a shame. I thought it was a good show, at least it had a lot of potential. The first episode wasn’t so great but it got better with each episode. Maybe if it had a better time slot it would’ve fared better? Guess we’ll never know. Sad.

  25. Jane says:

    I watched a bit of The Playboy Club. Not impressed much. Plus, the period dramas are so expensive to produce, they need better ratings than a 30 minute sitcom. I’m surprised Prime Suspect hasn’t gotten the ax. I was hoping this show would be fantastic, but I spent most of the pilot wishing Maria Bello would chill out and eat a cheeseburger. She looks rough and not in a good way. My favorite new show is definitely Person of Interest.

  26. Lisa says:

    TPC was better than PanAm.
    Hopefully Terra Nova is next.
    That show is just lame.
    It’s a shame too there are a couple of good actors on Terra Nova but the show is just crap.

  27. Ryan says:

    Sad…. I liked this show… Wish I could see more of it. Anyone know if they finished. There was so much potential… I really wanted to see how the gay rights storyline played out.

  28. Onno says:

    What the hell is wrong with you americans It’s Amber Heard in a bunny costume what’s not to like about that too bad it got cancelled i will watch my 3rd episode and then move on from nbc up all night a season pickup that show is sooooooo not funny i had that one up for cancelation nbc you suck big time

  29. Matt says:

    What the heck it is not indecent and it was something my wife and I look forward to seeing this is not right they could have at least gave it a full seson jerks

  30. Tricia says:

    I actually really liked the show. Too bad. Sometimes I think the networks give up too early on shows. Sad.

  31. LIMOM says:

    Monday’s night show was up against the Yankees – enough said!
    I kinda like the show and wish they would have given it more time.

  32. Liz says:

    Oh… since they cancelled that sexist show, does that mean Eddie Cibrian won’t be able to support his mistress, I mean, wife? So saaaad…

  33. Evyn says:

    :( i really liked it, they could at least let them finish the season it were only 13 episodes…

  34. Anna says:

    Whitney is only getting ratings because it follows The Office. The Playboy Club was good, and I was sincerely hoping that it wouldn’t get cancelled.

  35. zomicron says:

    NBC is well known for getting some interesting show concepts on the air, and then, killing them off–some quickly, some exceptionally quickly, and some even sooner than that.

    The executives at NBC are–no matter how many times they swap out this person and that person for the bonehead that is leaving in the TV programming division–still clueless, and don’t know anything about a good show being a good show….

    I too wonder how a super small sampling of households (and it is a very small sampling) with the boxes can manuever shows into the void…. once or twice I was sent by Neilsen a booklet to fill out (within the last 24 monhts)…no box in my house. Maybe they ignore those who fill out the booklets?

    Is it kind of like absentee voting in national elections, when you mail in your voting intents, perhaps they ignore them?

    It shouldn’t matter if the show gets 2.5 million or 3 million or 3.5 million viewers…if they have a full slot of advertising sponsors, who gives a rat’s ass what the Nielsen boxes allegedly indicate…

    Again, the cancellation of “The Bunny Club” (in my erstwhile opinion) is directly due to clueless boneheads in NBC’s TV division (who believe themselves to be managers–let me hurl my decently tasting dinner out of my stomach now)….anyone remember “Kings”? Very imaginative show. NBC killed it off.

    Revolving chairs, revolving doors. But zippo appreciation for the writers who, along with their good cinematographer colleagues, and the actors as well, brought to life a period drama that I personally thought was on its way to evolving into a very decent drama. Wasn’t quite there, but it was on its way.

    And these TV programming managers at NBC get paid big bucks? For what? To keep the seat of the chair warm?

    Bogus.

    And no, I will not watch “Terra Nova” beyond the two episodes I watched (the repeat on Saturday, and the Monday episode). The concept is a bad, third carbon-copy knock-off of the “Jurassic Park” series…. Again, FOX should deserve some wrath as well (same problems there as at NBC), for cancelling Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, which also was a very well written, very high quality show….

    And these TV programming people wonder why viewers go to cable TV for decent dramas? Duh.

  36. zomicron says:

    I wanted to add something that I forgot, in regards to “The Playboy Club.” I intended to say it, but slipped my mind when I hit the “submit” button…

    At the end of the episode, they usally had teasers (at least they did for the first two episodes) for scenes of upcoming episodes.

    For this third episode, they did not have this happen at the end. It went to teasers for another show NBC was promoting.

    So if the clueless boneheads in the TV programming division at NBC attempt to claim that the “low ratings” cancelled the show–this lack of showing teasers for TPC upcoming plot lines belies their subterfuge and misdirection–the truth of the matter is that someone made a decision prior to the broadcast last night to cancel the show.

    So much for news items saying that the new head of NBC’s TV programming wanting to give new shows some time to “gain audience”….

    Bogus.

    Before the alleged “important Nielsen ratings” came in from that very small subset of TV boxes out in the USA-viewership-land….

  37. Nicky says:

    This totally sucks!!! Canceling a show after only 3 eps?!?! I really liked it :/

  38. Helen says:

    I am so disappointed! I loved the show; not only for the fashion, the dancing,the music, the handsome gentlemen and curvy dames but also for the story of how it was back then. How homosexuals had to hide their true identity and how it was tough being a black girl trying to make it in the 60s. How it was tough being any girl. And I also like that the girls were able to express their sexuality in a time when girls weren’t aloud to do that.
    So very disappointed!

  39. Angie says:

    I LOVE the show! How cxan they do that? The attorney Nick is a cutie pie! I can’t believe they have cancelled this show. I hate NBC!!

  40. gargumma says:

    A show called “The Playboy Club” would only be a success on cable, showing lots of skin alongside great scripts. That’s the only thing interesting about a Playboy Club, that’s what made its name above everything else. It’s crazy that the suits can’t realize something that simple.

  41. Martina says:

    Ridiculous to cancel something 3 episodes in, now they are gonna put on reruns of another show for 3 weeks instead of airing the episodes they already have ready, idiotic!!!

  42. Bob says:

    How can you create a show about Playboy bunnies and not show T&A? This should have never been on NBC. HBO, Showtime or any other cable station would have been a better fit maybe? I guess i can delete this from my TiVo now…

  43. cj says:

    the TPC premiere was better than i was lead to believe. the Pan Am premiere was NOT as good as i was lead to believe. that being said, Pan Am has held my attention better than TPC. also, while you can say all day you’re surprised more guys aren’t tuning in for the T&A, its really not that surprising that nobody has tuned in. Playboy is still very stigmatized and there are plenty of parents/adults out there who are going to see the name “The Playboy Club” and make assumptions, keeping themselves and possibly others away from them. Pan Am is far more family friendly and has a better time slot.

    why NBC picked up whitney i have no clue. maybe since it cancelled TPC it has more money to burn to try and get whitney to take. and up all night, while i enjoy the combo of applegate and arnett, it just can’t compete with the Middle for me. nbc has a history of hanging onto poorly performing shows. and thats why its always last in the ratings. well, ahead of the CW i guess.

  44. Jenny says:

    Oh, this sucks. This was actually my favourite new show of the season. Such potential! I think it would have made a great Sunday show, because despite the fact that it featured playboy bunnies, it really did appeal to women, and Sunday night has proven it can draw women in with Desperate Housewives. I do think that that is why Pan Am has done better than this one. Pan Am is okay, but not nearly as good as Playboy Club is (was). Ugh, this blows.

  45. kthrace says:

    Not even Amber Heard’s cleavage could save this show. :D

  46. Linda says:

    Wow, I really was starting to like this show. I hate not knowing what happens… :)

  47. Bob says:

    Woah woah woah, what’s up with all the hate on Whitney? I actually like that show, it’s better then TPC!

  48. monica says:

    no!!!! The Playboy Club is Good! why cancel it ?

  49. Carmichael says:

    I agree. Full season for Chuck. Thats what they get for moving Chuck to Fridays

  50. Sue says:

    I think the name of the show was an issue for a lot of people and they elected to never watch as it turned them off. Mistake IMO. It was well written, acted, and the music was great and the hour went by too quickly. My only complaint was having the character of Caroline sing a full song in every episode. Very talented but maybe half of a song would have been better?

    Lot’s going on with the layers of murder, mystery, mob, politics, the time frame but mostly the relationships. I enjoyed the girl’s camaraderie in every episode. This show was about the power of women. They may have marketed it to men but should have marketed it to women. After three shows, I was invested in all the characters and wanted to see more of the story. It had legs. It was more about the politics and the beginning of the gay and feminist movement than sex or demeaning woman but if you didn’t watch, you didn’t get that. I know that they filmed more episodes so if you can please tell me where to watch. This is why I hate network TV. Three strikes and you are out? This was a good show.

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