Monday, June 18, 2018

Cancelled?!? “Leave it to Beaver”

Today, Leave it to Beaver is remembered as a classic, successful sitcom that reflected the way America saw itself in the 1950’s. Everyone must have watched it every week, right? Well, the truth is that the quintessential 1950’s family sitcom was actually canceled after its first season on CBS. Originally, the show had middling ratings and was on the bubble ratingswise. CBS decided to pop the bubble after the show’s first season.

Had CBS’ cancellation stuck, Leave it to Beaver would probably have been seen as just a strange artifact of the 1950’s, remembered only for its rose colored view of family life. ABC, however, decided to step in and pick up the show from CBS’ scrap heap. The network was younger and more desperate than CBS, so even if Leave it to Beaver merely retained its middling ratings, it would be good enough for ABC. Fate would intervene, however. America had grown to love the show and its ratings soared in its second season. The classic show would eventually end on its own terms, going out on top in 1963.