“The Chris Gethard Show” has been canceled after 26 episodes on truTV, the comedian said in a Facebook post on Monday.
“It’s official! The Chris Gethard Show is canceled. Kaput. No more!” he wrote. “I write this with a strange mix of emotions: sadness, worry, uncertainty, but also pride, excitement, and relief.”
Originally an Upright Citizens Brigade live show that eventually made its way to public access television, “The Chris Gethard Show” has had a troubled life on commercial TV. In 2013, Gethard shot a pilot episode of the show for Comedy Central, which opted not to give it a series order. It then ran for two seasons on Fusion before finally making its way to truTV.
The final episode of the show aired in May.
“Some executives from truTV sat me down a few weeks after this most recent batch of episodes and said, ‘We’re getting the sense from your final speech, and from some of our behind the scenes conversations, that you might be done with this project,'” Gethard wrote. “I told them they were right.”
Gethard called the cancellation a “mutual decision,” explaining that the viewership demands of commercial television were incompatible with the spirit of the project and were having a negative effect on both his personal life and the final product.
“If we moved forward, I don’t know that the episodes would have been totally ours anymore, and I know for a fact our dedicated fans would not want that,” he wrote. “And look, if you don’t have numbers, things have to change. That’s how it goes with commercial tv, right? So the longer the show went on, the more peoples’ opinions were getting involved in it. That’s the nature of the beast.”
Gethard described having a “full on panic attack” before one of the truTV episodes after a tense discussion about the direction of the show with producers and network executives.
“That was when it started to dawn on me that this project had taken some turns where the pressure was at times outweighing the fun – and this show is too important to me to ever let that be the case,” he wrote. “This season was really, really hard. It was tough on my health at times, and I saw it getting tough on the health of some of my long time collaborators as well.”
A fusion variety-talk series that aired live every week, “The Chris Gethard Show” was well-regarded in the comedy world for its unique brand of controlled chaos. Guests throughout its run have included Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler, P. Diddy, Lena Dunham and Paul Giamatti. The final episode featured a special appearance by “Ant-Man and the Wasp” star Paul Rudd.
However, despite critical acclaim and a passionate core fanbase, the show struggled to gain traction in the ratings. Even on the comedy-oriented truTV, the show was regularly the lowest-rated program in the lineup.
“I’ve been thinking a lot about how my more recent work is of a very different tone than TCGS. It’s a little slower and calmer and reflective of the fact that I’m now pushing 40,” Gethard wrote, explaining that the show may have “hit a ceiling” in terms of evolving with his own brand of comedy. “The show is the show and it isn’t changing anymore. We could all feel it on the inside. Part of the exhilaration, fun, and uniqueness of this show is always that it reflected us, the people making it.”
“I’m different. The show isn’t. It’s time to see what’s next,” Gethard wrote.