Cable giant HBO Monday axed The Comeback, a mockumentary comedy starring Lisa Kudrow as a has-been actress seeking to revive her career. In the show, Kudrow plays the character of Valerie Cherish, star of the fictional '80s sitcom I'm It. The faux reality show The Comeback chronicles Cherish's return to television in the fake sitcom Room and Bored, which is populated by scathing depictions of Hollywood personality types.
The former Friends star also created the show with production partner Michael Patrick King. Its 13-episode run ended September 4. Said an HBO spokeswoman, "We've looked at our schedule, and given our future commitments, we felt we would not be able to give the show the support it needed."
In July, HBO canceled the flagging supernatural drama Carnivale, which had struggled through two expensive seasons without finding a large audience. The Comeback, while not costing as much, had debuted to poor ratings and received mostly withering reviews.
HBO is attempting to stop a slide in ratings and a perception that its once-buzzworthy shows are becoming less so. Currently, its high hopes ride on ratings king Rome. The network is also placing bets on the return of the Larry David sitcom, Curb Your Enthusiasm (starting back up this Sunday, September 25), as well as the premiere of Extras, a new sitcom about the movie industry from The Office-creator Ricky Gervais.