Part of the reason “Terriers” was cancelled.

by on May 21, 2011 · 4 comments

in Culture, Media, Ocean Beach


by Jordan Green / Tucson Weekly / May 20, 2011

Last September, FX premiered a show about two private eyes called Terriers. The show had a sunny setting in Ocean Beach, an eclectic township of San Diego. It had two dynamic leads in the perpetually underrated Donal Logue and Michael Raymond-James, who played the Cajun-accented bad guy in the first season of True Blood. Terriers was exceptionally well-written and engaging, and the more episodes you watched, the more hooked you became. It also had an absolute masterpiece of an opening credit sequence. Take a look by going to above link for vid.

Four months later, despite a fervent cult following, Terriers was canceled. Most fans blamed the failure on a miserable and confusing dog-centric marketing campaign, though FX President John Landgraf adamantly denies this . (As one AV Club post mentioned, why not just play the theme song in commercials?) Either way, a really terrific show was cut down before it had a chance.

Contrast this with HBO, which last week renewed Treme for a third season just a few episodes into its second. David Simon’s sprawling drama is set in New Orleans in the months and years after Hurricane Katrina, but finding an audience has been difficult. The second season premiere of Treme drew a paltry viewership of 605,000. We’re talking nationwide. That number isn’t entirely accurate, since many HBO viewers may have DVRed the episode (not sure if those numbers are counted), and even more may have downloaded it illegally. Still, that’s not many people. It’s less than the entire population of the Boise metro area. That number is also slightly over half of Treme’s series premiere a year ago. Still, HBO renewed it, and they renewed it because HBO’s programming philosophy prizes quality over ratings. What kind of company does that? Why don’t more companies do that?

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

ASBuco May 21, 2011 at 1:02 pm

I really loved this show. I would love to see the rest of this story but where it says to follow the link, there is no link. And there isn’t one for the video either.


tennyson May 21, 2011 at 3:59 pm

and when I asked in LA while up there, figuring San Diegp and especially OB alone cannot carry a show, most said they thought it was a show about dogs (the 4 legged ones) and were not interested


Brenda McFarlane May 25, 2011 at 10:42 am

Terriers was getting better as they found themselves. But I found the story lines cliche and old-school. It drove me crazy because what was such a promising premise was so watered down and safe that when they took a risk, it seemed odd. I suspect that what happened with Terriers is what happens a lot with good ideas and writing, network executives got involved. Good art (and by that I include entertaining art) requires risk while keeping your executive job in TV-land requires covering your ass.


Ron Glaze August 11, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Terriers was a terrific show with a bad title. My wife and I told everyone we knew to watch it. Everyone did and liked it. So why now do I and others even care. Well it was a great show and it should come back!
Shame on FX and its management for a bad decision to cancel it. Play the trailers and rename it.

Management at FX say this I disagree and assume many others do to.
“Because for whatever reason—that’s disappointing and not entirely fathomable—people just don’t want to watch this show.”
“Most fans blamed the failure on a miserable and confusing dog-centric marketing campaign, though FX President John Landgraf adamantly denies this” .


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