NBC Cancels Free Agents

While every other network is passively sitting back on its heels and waiting for the fall season to take shape, NBC has come out with an itchy trigger finger. The network made its fourth decision on a new series today, canceling the underperforming Free Agents, which starred Hank Azaria as a recently divorced ad man, after four episodes. The news was not unexpected.

Last night's episode drew 3.28 million viewers and snagged a 1.0 rating according to preliminary Nielsen numbers. Free Agents' lead-in, Up All Night, scored a 2.2 rating, and its lead-out, Harry's Law, was watched by 8.22 million viewers. Clearly, people were changing the channel when Free Agents came on.

The decision is hardly a surprise from a business standpoint, but where did the show go wrong? When compared to the rest of this season's painfully weak new comedies, it was far from the worst. Kathyrn Hahn was great, Natasha Leggero was a favorite-TV-character-in-the-making as dizzying receptionist Emma, and Anthony Head was a riot as oblivious boss Stephen. I guess a sitcom about two older people hookin' up just isn't what Americans want to see. Bring on the attractive, loudmouth ladies telling us why men are different from women in the dating scene!

There's no word yet regarding a replacement for Free Agents on the schedule, but I'm guessing it will be repeats of Whitney or some other garbage. [UPDATE] It's been confirmed that Whitney repeats will fill Free Agents' newly vacated time slot. Enjoy!

This is NBC's second cancellation of the season; The Playboy Club was axed earlier this week after three episodes. The network has also granted full-season orders to Up All Night and Whitney. Elsewhere, Fox has picked up New Girl and CBS has picked up 2 Broke Girls.

If you're participating in our fall Dead Pool, Free Agents is worth nine points (13 - 4 = 9). I've guessed both cancellations correctly so far, have you?


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

Comments (67)
Submit
Sort: Latest | Popular
Spotted on the BBCA line-up: Free Agents on Saturday @ 10 and 10:30 pm. Yay.
Reply
Flag
whitney is the fucking worst show in the history of the world, unfunny ugly slut.
Reply
Flag
I don't need it to watch it , I m living it LOL :) I like the actors
Reply
Flag
whitney over free agents.. you gotta be kiddin me.. this is ridiculous, beyond reason..
Reply
Flag
I was actually enjoying this show. NBC is the worst at giving shows a chance to develop an audience!
Reply
Flag
me too!! i liked the way Hank's charcacte r fell into bed with his coworker and they both tried unsuccesfully to date new people!!
Reply
Flag
eh... it was way better than "Up All Night" or "Whitney". i kinda hate U.S. audience for what they prefer to watch
Reply
Flag
it wasn't the american audience that canceled it it was nbc! !excuse you!!!! neilsons boxes ratings from the age groups of 18-49 year old are all that count here thank for commenting!
Reply
Flag
I loved the banter between the Hank and Kathyrn and OMG on Anthony Stewart Head - he was hilarious! Very disappointed with NBC!!!
Reply
Flag
me too!!
Reply
Flag
I don't believe it! It was a great show! Four episodes?! I hate my life.
Reply
Flag
its about time they cancel this show ( it wasn't even comedy the worst even worse than How to Be a Gentleman).
Reply
Flag
So close. I had free agents to be cancelled first! Shame really, 'cos I liked it.
Reply
Flag
great!! That makes me an "also ran" .
Reply
Flag
Not only did I pick this one but so far my picks have been cancelled in order. 1. playboy club 2. Free agents. My number three probably won't be cancelled since I chose a surprise CW show and they never cancel crappy shows.
Reply
Flag
Yes! I think that's ANOTHER one I chose for the deadpool (I actually forget). I never bothered to watch this show as, while it didn't sound as bad as H8 or the Playboy Club, it sounded like a no-go.
Reply
Flag
I honestly thought Hank Azaria and co. have been overpaid for far too long w/ the Simpsons, and now with thier pay cut on said show, it only makes sense he would be looking for other work before the now inevitable cancellation of the Fox cartoon. Too bad, but this particular Azaria project like Smurfs didnt appeal to me. Though I liked him in Fatboy run.
Reply
Flag
In all honesty, I think Terra Nova is the worst new show of any genre. How many times can I say...BORING!
Reply
Flag
terra nova is aweome!!
Reply
Flag
Darn. I like Playboy Club and Free Agents but don't like Whitney or Up All Night.
Reply
Flag
So bleak about this one. I was really enjoying Free Agents. Sigh.
Reply
Flag
I've watched every episode aired and thought it was quite good....better than Up All Night. Watched by 3.28 million people? Yeah, sure, like they really know. The truth is that the networks haven't a clue as to how many people watch their shows and they NEVER HAVE. What...they give Nielson boxes to a select few who represent various age groups and use that as a representative sample, and then base their estimates on that? Phooey. You call that accurate? Ha, ha..



And Tim Surette. Yeah, we know you hate Whitney, but can you stop repeating yourself. Loads of people love the show, so why don't you just get used to it. You can change the channel whenever it comes on, while the rest of us enjoy it for years to come. I don't give a crap that you hate it. Get it in your head that lots of people love it and think it's a great show. Not everyone agrees with you!
Reply
Flag
Poor Hank. He plays Gargamel, The Simpsons might be cut short over salaries, and now this. Maybe he'll have some luck playing poker.
Reply
Flag
Good another lame show is gone on NBC the Nothing But Crap network. I watched 5 minutes of one and thought it was aweful!
Reply
Flag
I tried to watch Free Agents, just couldn't get into it. Up All Night is pretty good, and so is the New Girl
Reply
Flag
I actually liked this one and thought it was pretty good. Sadly it is just another failed adaption of a British series. I hope that BBC America is still going to show that version on Saturday. I really hoped this one would last a while. They should have put it on Thursday rather than Wednesday. The fact that Whitney is picked up and this is cancelled is really a bad reflection on the state of affairs of television.
Reply
Flag
shoot. I liked this one
Reply
Flag
Geez I'm doing good, my picks The Playboy Club, H8TR and Free Agents have all gone to the television graveyard. RIP
Reply
Flag
"Older people"?
Reply
Flag
I never watched it so i shouldn't comment but this doesn't seem unexpected i didn't like the original. I'm not a fan of Hank Azaria and he looks awful in this.
Reply
Flag
I'm such an idiot. It was between Whitney and Free Agents for me. Guess which I picked?
Reply
Flag
Seen it coming. After this NBC should rethink the idea of letting Chuck end this season. Well that's just my dream anyway.
Reply
Flag
I personally love British shows. However the American version of Free Agents forgot how sad these two people's situation is. Rather the show was fast paced with attempt at zinger after zinger not allowing for the characters to be their sad selves with funny jokes
Reply
Flag
Damn it, I was debating this or Whitney for the dead pool....clearly, I over estimated NBC....
Reply
Flag
Wow. I thought this show had some great wit to it, I haven't really been too impressed with comedy shows recently (aside from the ones that have been around, like How I Met Your Mother), so this show really stood out to me. But it makes sense, because everyone cancels any show I like (Firefly, Stargate Universe, Dollhouse, Doctor Who Confidential...just saying)
Reply
Flag
Not really a surprise. If it wasn't for this site, I would have never heard of it.
Reply
Flag
@TV.com : the Whtiney repeats is it only for a few weeks, time to NBC to place something else at this time slot ? please say yes!
Reply
Flag
It's based on a British comedy. That also had Anthony Head. NBC canceled COUPLING some years back - also a British comedy. Why do they bother or even try to copy the British? I hope it's a lesson for them by now, but they probably will not learn.



FREE AGENTS, the British version, begins airing on BBC America this Saturday, so I, for one, will be interested to see how that is. My worry is that it will be censored/edited for American audiences/TV, which I find disappointing with that network.
Reply
Flag
NBC: We make terrible snap decisions because we care. Oh wait no it's cause we have no idea what the public wants. THAT's why we make terrible snap decisions.
Reply
Flag
Blah, I didn't put this on my Dead Pool list. I thought the show was okay, but as I may have mentioned before somewhere on this site, I liked all of the supporting characters more than the two leads (Azaria and Hahn), which probably isn't a good thing. Oh well.
Reply
Flag
In Other news, Water is wet
Reply
Flag
what a f..k,it's much more better than Whitney,broke girls,up all night and all the other new comedy shows
Reply
Flag
Not surprised, but this show was way better than Whitney. If you like Whitney, you're what's wrong with America. If they don't pick up Community for another season I'm done with NBC.
Reply
Flag
Forget about "Dead Pools"... This was actually a pretty sharp sitcom... It was definitely far better than 2 Broke Girls!!! I've never seen such stiff/stilted acting in my entire life (outside of B movies, and high school plays of course)!!!



I've gotta say I think this was one show that had the potential to at the very least go somewhere. Hank Azaria delivered his lines perfectly, as did his Co-Star Kathryn Hahn!!! The supporting cast was also solid without going over-the-top.



Oh well it's not the first time I'm disappointed with the decision to cancel a first season show... and it most certainly won't be the last!
Reply
Flag
It is sad NBC has not only not cancelled Whitney, but they are actually showing reruns of it.



Reply
Flag
Ha, ha.. Find something else to watch while lots and lots of people enjoy Whitney, ONE OF THE BEST NEW SHOWS IN YEARS!
Reply
Flag
whithey is by far the worst show that happened on tv in recent years.. I am really sorry for the tastelessness of the folks watching it..
Reply
Flag
It just started to get good too! I think it bombed because the job isn't well known and it was unclear where it was going. Shame though, Azaria is always in such good shows.
Reply
Flag
I guessed this (Free Agents) one in the Dead Pool contest. Woot Woot! I also guessed right on the season pickup show, 2 Broke Girls. I should'a known 'Playboy Club' would get the axe but i gave it higher hopes than NBC did apparently. Ok networks ... now cancel H8R and Terra Nova pronto so I can win this thing.
Reply
Flag
I am doing great so far, right now i am praying that my other two picks get cancelled quick because i put Revenge on my list and that is not doing so bad (damnit) and hell I actually kind of like it myself. Thank God I did not choose whitney, hopefully a lot of other people did. I am also cheering for Charlies Angels to make to the winter simply because I did not put that on my list either but it looks like a lot of other people did (I thought it was going to another Hawaii Five-O) If my other two shows get cancelled before they air three episodes and no other shows this season get cancelled I should be in good shape, the tie breaker I got wrong I thought that 2 Broke Girls would get renewed before Up All Night though Up All Night was my second choice to get renewed.
Reply
Flag
I wasn't really interested in Free Agents, but it looked better than Up All Night and Whitney, which haven't made me laugh ONCE which is a big problem for a COMEDY SHOW.. NBC always cancels the wrong shows, leaving the bad ones to get full season pickups
Reply
Flag
People always watch the wrong shows, it's not NBC fault, with an 1.0 it was the right choice to make.

Reply
Flag
I guessed them too, mainly because my list is only different from yours, Tim, in one place. ;)
Reply
Flag
If only Hank had been a younger, hotter, lankier female, I'm shure this show would've been soo much funnier.
Reply
Flag
Staff
It would definitely make the post-coital scenes with Kathyrn Hahn more interesting!
Reply
Flag
Well, not fully unexpected. There were so many candidates for cancellation this year, and this one was also on my list. But unfortunately not in my top 5. That's the tricky thing with the Dead Pool; it's not enough to predict which ones will be cancelled (that's fairly easy), you need to figure out which are the five first ones to be cancelled.

This was definitely not the worst show of the bunch, far from it. (I guess there's no need to point out which show deserves the award for worst show of the autumn. Hint: Starts with a W and ends with hitney.) So in that sense it is a shame for Free Agents. But now I know for next year's Dead Pool that NBC truly has an itchy trigger finger. Let's see what replacements NBC finds for this show and The Playboy Club, or if they'll just do reruns for the rest of the season.
Reply
Flag
For worst new show, don't you mean New Girl?...yep...really, really bad. No laughs in 3 episodes so far.
Reply
Flag
no, we all mean whitney.. it is by far THE WORST show of this season. All I am hoping now is that, at some point they will realize the awful mistake they did and stop airing (there have been shows who were ordered and then cancelled).. TV universe deserves much better than this..
Reply
Flag
Good riddance. Hank Azaria deserved better.
Reply
Flag
yes! another 9 points! xD still sad it got cancelled, though :(
Reply
Flag
Load More Comments

Like TV.com on Facebook