Remember Cane, the new CBS drama which stirred a bit of a controversy ’round these parts a few weeks ago?
Well, it looks like the number of viewers have been dropping since week 1 according to Sun-Sentinel TV critic Tom Jicha, and he has some reasons why:
Cane lost another 600,000 viewers for its fourth airing Tuesday night. Next week, it will be at least 600,001. After four weeks of watching, partly out of a sense of duty because the show is set in Palm Beach and partly because I once had high hopes for it, I’ve given up.
I’ve attempted to analyze the weekly dropoffs–the three-week trend is 9.9 million to 9.1 to 8.5–but Tuesday I came to the conclusion that it’s not the little things, such as too much subtitling, that is hurting the show. It’s the big thing. Cane stinks.
The storylines are duller than an eight-hour shift chopping cane. The characters are almost without exception off-putting and cardboard. Jimmy Smits is giving the worst performance of his career. It’s as if he’s playing down to the rest of the cast, the way a good sports team sometimes looks as inept as its much weaker competition.
Don’t take this personally, Palm Beach. You’ve become so invisible that there are probably a lot of people who think the show is set in Miami. South Beach gets more attention.
As I’ve mentioned in other posts, a lot of failed shows are having their lifespans artifically extended by the threat of a Writers Guild strike as soon as Nov. 1. The thinking is it’s better to have a mediocre show that at least can boast it’s new than the avalanche of reruns that will start filling the airwaves within a few weeks of writers hitting a picket line. This could be the best thing Cane has going for it right now.
CBS issued its customary daily ratings recap and it went on for six paragraphs lauding the season high performances of NCIS and The Unit. Cane, which hit seasonal lows despite the sturdy lead-ins, was never mentioned.
You would hope that if the writers do go out, they will have really imaginative slogans on their picket signs. Then again, these are TV writers, so if there is a good idea or two, the others will just copy it.