Bob Hearts Abishola landed an early renewal at CBS in January.
The show’s continued resilience in the face of an ever-changing broadcast TV market meant that it was all but guaranteed a renewal.
As new details trickle out about Bob Hearts Abishola Season 5, it’s clear the show is preparing a major overhaul when it returns in the fall.
Deadline stunned fans of the comedy this week with the following announcement:
Billy Gardell and Folake Olowofoyeku are the only cast members returning as series regulars.
In a word? Whoa.
In a cost-cutting move, the other 11 series regulars from the current fourth season of the series have all been demoted to recurring status for next season.
Christine Ebersole (Dottie), Matt Jones (Douglas), Maribeth Monroe (Christina), Vernee Watson (Gloria), Shola Adewusi (Auntie Olu), Barry Shabaka Henley (Uncle Tunde), Travis Wolfe Jr. (Dele), Bayo Akinfemi (Goodwin), Anthony Okungbowa (Kofo), Saidah Arrika Ekulona (Ebunoluwa), and Gina Yashere (Kemi) are the 11 cast members getting demoted.
You might wonder what this means for the cast, and it’s not that good.
The recurring players will have five-episode guarantees, meaning they will each appear in at least five episodes of Bob Hearts Abishola Season 5.
At this moment in time, the series has been picked up for 13 episodes, too, which is undoubtedly a signal the show is on its way off the air.
Deadline notes that there has been conflicting information about the show’s future, including the possibility that the show will cease to exist after the 13-episode fifth season.
Given that the 11 affected stars will have reduced income thanks to this decision, they can take on other TV jobs.
Deadline adds that sources say the five-episode guarantees will remain in place even if the episode order is increased.
The episode guarantees for broadcast series are expected to become more common as economics continue to prove challenging thanks to viewership erosion.
What are your thoughts on the Bob Hearts Abishola cast getting demoted?
Do you think it’s a good idea?
Hit the comments.
Catch new episodes on Mondays at 8.30 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.