Things are not looking good for the new FOX sitcom “Mulaney.” After three episodes aired to lackluster ratings, the comedy, which follows comedian John Mulaney (who plays a fictionalized version of himself) living in New York and working as a comedy writer, is in danger of cancelation. The big warning sign came over the weekend when FOX made the decision to lessen the network’s order for the series from 16 episodes to 13.
According to reports from TVbytheNumbers.com, the show has failed to make a significant dent in the ratings. After premiering to a less-than-stellar 2.34 million viewers on Oct. 5, the show has not managed to climb much higher, even dipping to 2.25 million with the most recent Oct. 19 episode. The ratings are even more disappointing considering the show’s popular “Family Guy” lead-in.
Fox canceled the last three episodes of its original 16-episode order just as episode 14 was about to go into production. Now the question remains what will the network do once the now 13-episode season of the show concludes? Is the reduced order an indicator of a certain cancelation in the future?
Not quite yet. With no word on FOX’s big picture plans for “Mulaney,” the network will likely wait out the rest of the season to see if word-of-mouth and time causes a bump in the ratings.
“Mulaney” has drawn many comparisons to the classic NBC sitcom “Seinfeld,” with its intercut stand-up comedy and premise of an upstart New York comedian with a very similarly structured group of friends (Nasim Pedrad’s Jane is clearly a modern-day Elaine.) Some have noted that the first “Seinfeld” episode was met with mixed reviews and that the show needed time to find itself, a chance that should perhaps be granted to “Mulaney.”
However, the majority of critics have slammed “Mulaney” as merely a cheap rip-off of “Seinfeld,” not the savvy homage it surely intends to be. The show’s first season has only a 15 percent positive rating on the aggregate review site Rotten Tomatoes. The “Seinfeld” pilot may have been ill-received, but its second episode won a Writer’s Guild award and the series is by and large considered one of the best television seasons of all time. “Mulaney” does not seem destined for any such praise.
“Mulaney” will have its chance to prove it should stay – 13 episodes worth. However, things are not looking up for the struggling show.
Do you think Fox should cancel “Mulaney” after the season? Tweet your thoughts to @Ja9GarofaloTV.