Fall's Second Casualty: NBC Axes Free Agents

On the heels of NBC shutting The Playboy Club‘s doors, the second cancellation of the 2011-12 TV season also comes from the Peacock network — Free Agents.

NBC Grants Full-Season Orders to Up All Night and Whitney

As reported by our sister site Deadline.com, NBC has the low-rated, critically-lambasted comedy off the air after four low-rated episodes, the last of which mustered a measly 1.0 demo rating, while drawing just 3.28 million total viewers.

Based on a UK series of the same name, this rom-com starred Hank Azaria and Kathryn Hahn as quirky PR execs on the romantic rebound.

That leaves Prime Suspect as the only already-debuted NBC newbie awaiting word on its fate, since Up All Night and Whitney already garnered full-season orders. (The Friday night spookest Grimm premieres Oct. 28.)

Reaction? Predictions for cancellation No.3? Hit the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Nicole says:

    Phooey! The ratings didn’t reflect it, but this show had its fans. I found it to be a funny adult comedy and looked forward to it every week. If NBC has any unaired eps I hope they run them off on Sat night or at least put them online.

    • Britt says:

      Same here! I’m really sad to see it go :(

    • filmex says:

      Totally agree. It was a cute show. Hope Hahn lands a new gig soon because she is superb.

      Good thing NBC exec Greenblatt promised to give “The Playboy Club”, “Free Agents” and Prime Suspect” a chance to find their audience, to show the creative community their shows on NBC would be given a chance to develop.

      He noted “Cheers”, “Seinfeld” and even Fox’s “House” would never have been hits had they been cancelled their first year.

      In the seven days since he made his declaration, two of the three have been axed. Maria Bello and crew should be perusing the Want Ads.

  2. Damn. I really liked this show. It was pretty intelligent.

  3. Adam says:

    Hmmm, thought they may have waited seeing as they’ve just got rid of TPC, but hey. Charlie’s Angels next. Enough said.

  4. kevin says:

    It was bound to happen but NBC still needs to get their ratings’ groove back.

  5. Debaloo says:

    Darn! I watched this for the first time last night and actually like it. Oh well……

  6. Samantha says:

    I didn’t even make it through the first episode :/

    • MJ says:

      I didn’t make it through the first episode either. It wasn’t funny to me at all.

      • Linda says:

        Add me to that too!! I didn’t find it funny either! Of course I’ve always had a hard time watching anything that Hank Azaria is in. Love Kathryn Hahn though. Hope she bounces back with something else.

        • Templar says:

          Just my opinion, but Hahn is sidekick material, not lead. She makes a great best friend in films. As for Azaria, I loved him as the dog walker on Mad About You, and in Night at the Museum, but again, can’t carry the lead.

          • TimC says:

            Actually thought Hahn was the best thing is this. I agree, Hank is a great straight man and 2nd fiddle, not so much as lead. I like him usually, but here he was just ‘meh’. This had absolutely no supporting cast storylines to even think about (sorry Mr. Head, you were SOOOO much better in Buffy). Bad writing, and I didn’t relate to any of the characters (happily married family man with no single friends).
            Unfortunately, good call on the cancel NBC, hope you’ve got better in the wings somewhere.

      • Carmichael says:

        See, now, I have that exact same feeling about Whitney and Up All Night. Maybe it’s because I don’t have kids that I’m not getting Up All Night and as as for Whitney……….It just seems forced

        • bored_at_work says:

          Whitney is taped before a live audience, so it will seem fake because they are trying not to laugh at their own jokes…

  7. rubyredslippers says:

    I’m only watching the NBC ratings to check up on Prime Suspect as I’d love to see Kirk Acevedo (Charlie) in more than a couple of episodes of Fringe this year and unfortunately the only way I see this happening is if Prime Suspect is cancelled.

  8. John says:

    My faith in the Peacock is starting to wan. They renew that travisty of a “program” called Whitney, but quickly cancel a show that actually has potential? I just don’t get it.

    • Rain says:

      To add insult to injury, not only did they keep Whitney, but they’re showing reruns of it in the Free Agents time slot. It’s a slap in the face to those of us who enjoyed Free Agents if you ask me!

      • KevyB says:

        Whitney’s ratings are pathetic also, but that gets a full pickup! And as much as I like Christina Applegate and Will Arnett, Up All Night is laugh-free! At least Free Agents had promise. NBC is pathetic. (And, Michael, it wasn’t critically-lambasted. It’s rating on Metacritic is 51, meaning it was neither lambasted nor adored.)

        • Andy says:

          I TOTALLY AGREE. Are we in Bizzaro Land? They KEEP the pathetic train wreck that is Whitney and can Free Agents, which IS funny AND has potential?! WHERE ARE WE? WHAT IS THIS PLACE?! MOMMY?

  9. Lucia says:

    Can H8ter be canceled like now?

  10. Nate says:

    Cancellation No. 3 should be Charlie’s Angels, especially after the ratings from tonight’s episode are in.

  11. Summer says:

    The show was starting to grow on me. How sad. It strikes me, though, that in today’s market, shows like Friends or Seinfeld – which weren’t really hits in their first season – wouldn’t really make it in today’s television climate, where the execs are looking for insta-hits.

  12. Carm says:

    I watched it last night. I liked it.

  13. Ash says:

    I’ve never even heard of this show. Great advertising NBC.

  14. David says:

    This isn’t a surprise. I couldn’t even make it through the first episode. Whitney I am actually surprised got a full season pickup though.

  15. spikesgrl says:

    I gave up on it after the first week. Knew it wouldn’t be around for long.

  16. Donna says:

    Is TVLine bringing back the Cancellation Scorecard?

  17. Rebecca says:

    Terrible show. I watched the first episode and hated it. Good riddance!

    Charlie’s Angels is looking weak, and How to Be a Gentleman crapped out in its premiere by CBS standards. So… I put my money on Charlie’s Angels going first since it’s been on for a little longer.

  18. Michelle says:

    This show wasn’t great, but I thought it had potential. Perhaps if NBC spent some money and effort promoting shows other than Whitney and The Office, this might have found a larger audience. I also thought it was dumb to pair this show with Up All Night. It might have made more sense to hold this until January and run it after 30 Rock.

  19. Bounce says:

    Loved this show after I got through the first blah episode. After that it really picked up and was interesting. I couldn’t even watch Whitney, the promos were awful. Still will not watch it, and I still can’t make it through a full epi of Up All Night. I really want to like it, but it’s just not doing it.

    Why are intelligent sitcoms doing so poorly?? Shame stupidity is emerging victorious.

  20. DJ says:

    Well I watch a lot of TV but this show wasn’t even on my radar…

  21. diana says:

    Kathryn Hahn was awesome, and I thought the show had potential. Sorry to hear it. Also surprised that NBC kept “Whitney”. I can’t even stand the promos for that one, let alone the show itself. Oh well….

  22. Randy says:

    I like the show a lot better then Up All Night. It’s a shame that it wasn’t given a better chance and crap like Up All Night was given a full season.

  23. kimmy says:

    I liked that show and especially Kathryn Hahn. I think NBC should have waited because the show has potential and the main characters were very touching.

  24. ali says:


  25. TheDude says:

    The Attack of the Show curse continues. It seems like every time a cast member of a low rated, at risk of cancellation show does an interview on AotS… the show is canceled within 24 hours.

  26. AC says:

    This is too bad, I liked this show. I don’t really understand how Up All Night and Whitney get enough ratings to get renewed and this doesn’t, considering it was far better than either of those.

  27. MirandaB says:

    Sad. I’m just hoping they don’t cancel Prime Suspect. Its the best new show I’ve seen. Let’s hope they give it a chance.

  28. Nancy says:

    I really looked forward to Free Agents as it was starting to find its feet. Hank Azaria is the new Tony Randallesq harried guy and Kathryn Hahn is wonderful with repartee. I guess the Execs are afraid of truly witty material. These kinds of shows take time to bloom, but if their just going to jerk them off the air because the 15 to 24 year olds aren’t tuning in in droves, well, just sayin’…..

  29. Steven says:

    Kathryn Hahn. Leggero. TONY HEAD.

    And it was funny.

    NBC, I am DONE with you. Until Awake and Smash come on. But SCREW Up All Night and GRIMM.

  30. Nancy says:

    Bring back THE EVENT NBC, please!! It was doing well and much better than your new shows. It is a great show!!

  31. JHarnes says:

    Maybe it’s a good thing Chuck will open late this year. The way shows are dropping at NBC – perhaps the Network might start appreciating a show with a dedicated core audience. What am I saying, it’s NBC – at least we have this final short season!

  32. Natalie says:

    Really?!?! Free Agents is my favorite show currently, whyyyyy isn’t it getting more of a chance?! Such a shame, sooo much potential!!

  33. Kristina says:

    Bummer!! The pilot wasn’t great, but it picked up after that. Really liked it :(

  34. Evan says:

    And for even more irony, the original British version of Free Agents premieres on BBC America this Saturday.

  35. Keith says:

    I liked Free Agents too. Each episode was a little better than the previous one.

  36. Volcfom says:

    Sad news.. Free Agents was my favorite of the new NBC comedies.

    I blame the scheduling. Wednesday is more of a family comedy night and Thursday holds the work-place shows. I’m guessing that Whitney will move to Wednesdays where is belongs and 30 Rock will resume its place on Thursday.