NBC’s biggest primetime gamble just became the first cancelled show of the season: The Playboy Club has been pulled from the network’s schedule.
The move is no surprise and, indeed, was expected months before the show premiered. The industry had low expectations for the 1960s set drama, which attempted to replicate a retro ‘Mad Men’ vibe but for a wide audience and on a network with plenty of content restrictions.
Playboy Club premiered to low ratings and then dropped for each of its three episodes. Despite having relatively tame content, the show wasn’t helped by conservative group the Parents Television Council vehemently protesting the show.
The PTC released a statement saying they were pleased with the cancellation:
“Bringing The Playboy Club to broadcast television was a poor programming decision from the start. We’re pleased that NBC will no longer be airing a program so inherently linked to a pornographic brand that denigrates and sexualizes women … we hope other broadcasters heed the important lessons of this programming debacle.”
NBC will fill the Monday night slot with repeats of new police drama ‘Prime Suspect’, which likewise needs some assistance in the Nielsen ratings. There are no plans to air remaining ‘Playboy Club’ episodes in another time period.
Playboy founder Hugh Hefner expressed his disappointment over the cancellation of “The Playboy Club”.
“I’m sorry NBC’s ‘The Playboy Club’ didn’t find it’s audience. It should have been on cable, aimed at a more adult audience,” Hugh Tweeted on Tuesday night.