A couple weeks ago, the peacock network finally started airing their new Friends with Benefits sitcom. The pilot for the TV show was developed for ABC but they passed on the series and NBC picked it up. Now that the show’s debuted, is the alphabet network regretting their decision or will the sitcom flop and be quickly cancelled?
Friends with Benefits revolves around a group of friends who live in Chicago and their relationships are complicated to say the least. Ben Lewis (Ryan Hansen) is on the hunt for the perfect woman who can meet his impossibly high standards. His best friend, Doctor Sara Maxwell (Danneel Harris), just wants a compatible man and to raise a family with him. They end up turning to each other for both moral and physical support as they wait for their mates to come along. Others in the cast include Zach Cregger, Andre Holland, and Jessica Lucas.
The NBC sitcom debuted with a pair of episodes on August 5th. The first one brought a terrible 0.7 rating in the 18-49 demographic and only 2.34 million viewers. It was third in the timeslot, tying with a repeat of Bones on FOX. The episode that followed at 8:30 dropped 14% to an even worse 0.6 demo rating and 1.96 million total viewers.
The following week’s installments fell again to a 0.5 rating and an average of 1.84 million. They were in fourth place in the timeslot, only beating a repeat of The CW’s Nikita. Last Friday’s episodes didn’t do any better.
Friends with Benefits is easily the worst performing original series on NBC. To put it in perspective, Minute to Win It is doing terribly but still gets about twice the ratings of Friends with Benefits. The peacock network execs obviously didn’t have much faith in Friends with Benefits which is why they delayed it until summer. Still, just how badly the show is actually doing is likely still a shock.
There is absolutely no way that NBC will be renewing this sitcom for a second season. If anything, they’ll pull it before all of the episodes have aired. For right now, episodes 11 and 12 are scheduled to air on September 9th. That will leave one remaining installment but, with ratings like these, the network hardly has any incentive to want to find a spot for the season/series finale.
But what do you think? Do you like Friends with Benefits? Would you like to see it renewed for a second season or just quickly cancelled?