The NBC sitcom Up All Night was pretty promising when it debuted last year: A very strong cast, led by Will Arnett, Christina Applegate and Maya Rudolph, all of them likable with a history of sitcom success. A decent premise- a couple adjusting to first time parenthood. It premiered to so-so ratings, but did well enough to gain a second season.
Here’s what happened since that second-season began: The series was abruptly pulled from NBC’s schedule, with the idea that it would be retooled as a multi-camera show. Creator Emily Spivey left. And then, last week, Applegate did too, throwing the series into further peril, since, you know, it’s about a married couple and she’s part of it.
So is the show cancelled? No! According to Deadline, the network plans to produce one episode of the series, without Applegate, and directed by TV legend James Burrows.
It’s unclear what form the show will take: Will Applegate’s character be killed off? Starting a sitcom episode with a main character’s death isn’t so funny, especially since there’s only a commitment to one more episode. Will the role be recast? Will the Applegate character just disappear with no acknowledgement?
I can see none of these scenarios succeeding, and I certainly don’t see the point in trying to salvage a series that, honestly, was never all that great to begin with.
I guess there’s one thing that could work: Move the show to USA and hire Rhonda Shear.