After a mere three weeks, Alec Baldwin’s ABC show, “The Alec Baldwin Show,” has been banished to Saturday night at 10 p.m., the indisputable worst time slot in all of television.
Attempting to capitalize on the political momentum of his popular President Trump impression on “Saturday Night Live,” Baldwin launched his talk show on October 14 to a dismal 2.1 million viewers. The subsequent three episodes found an increasingly small audience, and ABC announced the remaining new episodes would air on Saturday, with re-runs of “Shark Tank” replacing his show on Sunday nights.
Baldwin arrogantly thought his level of notoriety as an opposer of Trump coupled with high-powered celebrity guests would be enough to set him apart in a sea of leftist political talk shows. He was wrong.
In the premiere episodes, Baldwin showed himself to be a far more skilled actor than interviewer, barely allowing his guests to speak over his bevy of jokes and impersonations. A vanity project if ever there was one, Baldwin has seemingly been given a heavy dose of reality in the almost instant demise of his show.
“The Alec Baldwin Show” had plenty of ratings obstacles to overcome and needed to be a hit network show with broad appeal in order to survive. However, it unapologetically designed itself only for the leftist elite. Its original time slot on Sunday nights was opposite Sunday night football and premiered within weeks of two other comedy shows both hosted by progressive millennials, “Busy Tonight” on E! and “Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj” on Netflix.
Despite the consistent failings of politically driven celebrity talk shows advertised as comedy, they seem to premiere and get cancelled by the fistful every few months. Few networks or streaming providers seem to be able to learn that content meant only for a progressive audience very rarely works in a country that overwhelmingly elected Donald Trump in 2016.
Baldwin’s fans will point to his November 2 arrest for assault as the reason ABC pulled the show, though Baldwin’s erratic behavior has hardly diminished his popularity in the past. “Saturday Night Live” even made a cute little joke about the arrest of their star Trump impersonator over the weekend.
Baldwin maintains his innocence on the assault charge in an incident reported to have transpired over a parking spot in Manhattan. Considering how the actor’s star went on the rise following a highly publicized removal from a flight in 2011, it seems a parking spot altercation was just what his poorly rated show needed. Sadly for Baldwin, his latest public gaffe was not enough to make people want to watch him tactlessly trash the president on “The Alec Baldwin Show.”
ABC carefully chose their moment to quietly announce the failure of “The Alec Baldwin Show.” The network released their statement of the show’s sudden move to Saturday night in the mid-afternoon on Election Day, with most of the nation focused heavily on the midterm voting results. As so few people were watching the show, it is unlikely the cancellation will cause any major waves, and I expect ABC will soon retry the experiment with another, stridently liberal host.