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Rascals running CBS cancel ‘Vegas’

By: 11 May 2013 42 Comments

VegasThose varmints. Those rascals. Those weasels. CBS officials, on Friday, made the decision to cancel Vegas — an action-filled, retro romp set in an early 1960s Las Vegas when Chicago mobsters showed up, started killing people and set up some casinos in the process.

Perhaps the most irritating part of the decision to get rid of Vegas is that the show barely got a chance before its apparent fate was sealed. Bear in mind that Vegas stands as my favorite 2012 debut and I didn’t miss an episode. The show initially debuted on a Tuesday — Sept. 25, to be precise — and 14.85 million viewers tuned in. The show stayed in its Tuesday night slot until Feb. 26, when it was replaced by the also-cancelled Golden Boy. Vegas stayed off the air until April 5 when it was moved to Friday nights and remained there until the series finale on May 10.

The result was predictable — 9.52 million people watched Vegas on Feb. 19, but only 7.59 million viewers bothered to catch the show on April 5. It’s no surprise that the show lost a good chunk of its audience after CBS took the show off the air for about a month and a half and dumped it in a new time slot. It’s very strange that after the initial promotion blitz and obvious money thrown at producing the show, CBS would give up on it halfway through its first season.

Perhaps I’m living in a fantasy world (entirely possible), but it seems there was a time when shows that didn’t perform that well initially were at least given a sophomore season if they showed promise. And Vegas, indeed, showed promise. You had a couple of bona fide stars — Dennis Quaid as rough-and-tumble rancher and Sheriff Jack Lamb and Michael Chiklis as mobster Vincent Savino. In addition to the expected “cowboys vs. mobsters” theme, you had plenty of political intrigue, a few plot points hinting at the coming civil rights movement and the notion that the mob was willing to put women in powerful positions while the rest of the world was only warming up to the idea.

Yes, there were plenty of directions in which the show could have — and sometimes did — go. However, the plug has been pulled on this mighty entertaining program so all we’re left with is a bit of a cliffhanger for a series finale and, perhaps, another reality show or another morally bankrupt situation comedy to look forward to in the fall.

By the way, CSI: NY and Golden Boy also got the ax on Friday. You can read more about the cancellations here.

About: Ethan C. Nobles:
Benton resident. Rogue journalist. Recovering attorney. Email =


  • Susan Purtle said:

    Great article!

  • Ethan C. Nobles (author) said:

    Thanks, Susan. This is an outrage!

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