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Television Q&A: What could make ‘Designated Survivor’ return?

You have questions. I have some answers.

Q: I read that “Designated Survivor” will not be renewed for another season. This is perhaps one of the best programs on TV ever. What can I do to support the return of this outstanding program?

A: ABC has an online section at where you can send comments about programs. But I question whether that will do much to get this show a third season.

Ratings had dropped from the first season to the second. Variety also noted that the show had undergone off-camera turmoil, including several changes in showrunners. That included changes in the creative direction which, TVLine reported, left ABC concerned about its direction going forward. And, under star Kiefer Sutherland’s contract, Variety said, the show had to move from Toronto to Los Angeles for the third season, which would have driven up costs for “a show that was already on the higher-end of budget for broadcast dramas.”

Q: Are they going to continue “Grey’s Anatomy”?

A: While “Grey’s” has gone through many changes since its premiere in 2005, it remains one of ABC’s most popular shows and will be back in the fall. “Grey’s” will lead off Thursday nights, followed by “Station 19” (a “Grey”’s spinoff) and “How to Get Away with Murder.” All those shows come from producer Shonda Rhimes, who has owned ABC’s Thursdays. “Scandal,” the former occupant of the night when ended its run last season, was also from Rhimes.

And this next question has a “Grey’s” connection.

Q: What happened to “Killing Eve”?

A: There were only eight episodes in the first season of the thriller starring Jodie Comer and “Grey’s” alum Sandra Oh, and BBC America showed them all. But a second season was ordered even before the first one premiered, so you’ll have a chance to see more somewhere down the road.

Q: My husband and I were disappointed to hear that Fox’s “Last Man on Earth” starring Will Forte has been cancelled! Any reason why? All of our friends and family loved Forte’s wacky humor! Any hope for a revival?

A: Not at this point. Where some TV decisions can be about more than numbers – see all the factors in the “Designated Survivor” decision – ratings doomed “Last Man.” As Deadline reported, the series “quickly established a cult following but was never able to grow beyond niche appeal.” It almost ended a year ago, after three seasons, but was spared by a last-minute renewal, Deadline said.

Since the makers of the show knew that the fourth season could be the last, why end on a cliffhanger? Before the cancellation came, Forte told that the cliffhanger was meant in part to make it tough for Fox to cancel the series. (That’s a tactic other shows have tried, not always successfully.) Still, even before the bad news came, he said, “I have no hard feelings if they do cancel the show. It’s a business, and you got to get certain ratings.”

Q: I was wondering if the show “Broadchurch” on Netflix will be having a season 4? Love, love, love that show.

A: No. The drama starring David Tennant and Olivia Colman had its admirers, running for three seasons overseas and on BBC America, and inspiring a short-lived American version, “Gracepoint.” But three seasons was all that series creator Chris Chibnall chose to make, telling Radio Times that “there will be no more … absolutely.”

Q: There was a movie about a spider invasion of a small town. It was pretty good but had a bad ending. When the camera pulled away from the town, it was completely covered in spider webs. Any idea what the name of this one is?

A: That is “Kingdom of the Spiders,” with William Shatner, from 1977.

Do you have a question or comment about entertainment past, present and future? Write to Rich Heldenfels, P.O. Box 417, Mogadore, OH 44260, or Letters may be edited. Individual replies are not guaranteed.


©2018 Tribune Content Agency, LLC

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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