Though little surprise to anyone who's been following the show's overall ratings trajectory during its first season (and probably music to the ears of more than a few fans of AMC's The Walking Dead), ABC cancelled Lauren Cohan (The Walking Dead) and Scott Foley's (Scandal) action-spy dramedy Whiskey Cavalier. During Disney's Upfront press conference on Tuesday morning, ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke explained why the decision was made – and why the decision came down to the wire:
"It was a tough decision, it was the last decision we made We thought we gave it very strong launch in spring. But we lost audience. We felt the biggest opportunity was to try something new. We looked for other time slots but did not see a real opportunity to grow."
Deadline Hollywood reports that the final decision for the one remaining timeslot was between Whiskey Cavalier and ABC Studios-produced Emergence (turned down by NBC) – with Emergence winning the day with network executives reportedly looking to "try something new" in that time slot. Producer Warner Bros. TV is looking to shop the series to another service/platform.
Series executive producer Bill Lawrence confirmed the network's decision on Sunday, with both Cohan and Foley expressing their appreciation to the fans via social media – though Foley does take a little jab in that last post:
#WhiskeyCavalier is unfortunately over. I actually did have an investment in the show and the people. I'm sad. I'm grateful for the chance.
— Bill Lawrence (@VDOOZER) May 12, 2019
And to our amazing cast and crew, thank you for bringing this show to life! I love you guys so, so much. – LC ❤️
— Lauren Cohan (@LaurenCohan) May 13, 2019
The series had a bumpy start earlier this year during their winter Television Critics Association (TCA) press event, but the series received a boost when ABC debuted the series following the Academy Awards in February. Even with that start, the ratings began their descent back down to earth. To give some perspective: as of May 9, Whiskey Cavalier's 0.57 average made it the 3rd lowest-rated hour drama (behind The Fix and For the People). While the series' LIVE+ ratings were impressive, the fact that the series was starting from such a low ratings point made the end ratings results less impressive.
WHISKEY CAVALIER — Whiskey Cavalier" is a high-octane, hour-long action dramedy that follows the adventures of tough but tender FBI super-agent Will Chase (codename: "Whiskey Cavalier"), played by Scott Foley. Following an emotional breakup, Chase is assigned to work with badass CIA operative Francesca "Frankie" Trowbridge (codename: "Fiery Tribune"), played by Lauren Cohan. Together, they lead an inter-agency team of flawed, funny and heroic spies who periodically save the world (and each other) while navigating the rocky roads of friendship, romance and office politics.
Whiskey Cavalier stars Foley as Will Chase, Cohan as Francesca "Frankie" Trowbridge, Ana Ortiz as Susan Sampson, Tyler James Williams as Edgar Standish, and Vir Das as Jai Datta.
ABC's Whiskey Cavalier stems from from writer/executive producer Dave Hemingson and executive producer Lawrence with Warner Bros. Television. Hemingson is writer and executive producer; Lawrence and Jeff Ingold (Doozer Productions) are executive producers; Peter Atencio is director and executive producer (pilot), and Foley is producer of the series from Warner Bros. Television.