“Last Man Standing” has been axed by ABC after six seasons.
The Tim Allen-starrer followed the life of Mike Baxter (Allen), a conservative sporting goods executive whose values oftentimes clashed with those around him. Mike is married to Vanessa (Nancy Travis), and they were blessed with three children: Mandy (Molly Ephraim), Eve (Kaitlyn Denver) and Kristin (Amanda Fuller). Mike also often had disagreements with his son-in-law, Ryan (Jordan Masterson).
“Last Man Standing” has been occupying the 8 p.m. EST timeslot every Friday on ABC. The sitcom averaged 6.4 million viewers and 1.1 demo rating among audiences aged 18 to 49. The final episode for “Last Man Standing” aired in March, but it wasn’t until Wednesday, May 10 that ABC made the decision to cancel the show. The finale episode for Season 6 also featured guest star Jay Leno, according to TV Line.
The finale episode for Season 6 wasn’t the first time Leno graced the ABC sitcom. The funnyman reprised his role as a mechanic and car aficionado named Joe on the Sept. 30 episode, titled “Gameday Forecast: Showers.” Also in the installment, Mike was upset after learning that his daughter Mandy’s bridal shower will be held on the same day as the Broncos-Chargers game. In order to watch the game with Joe and their friends, Mike convinced the couple to hold separate showers.
Meanwhile, the Season 6 renewal for “Last Man Standing” came late last year. According to TV By the Numbers, ABC already released all the shows that have been picked up, but the sitcom didn’t make the cut. At the time, ABC had been finalizing their negotiations with 20th Century FOX TV. Due to this, some fans thought that ABC was just taking its time to renew the sitcom for Season 7.
The cancellation also came as a shock because “Last Man Standing” was dubbed as the perfect sitcom for the Trump era, according to Deadline. The publication claimed that the central character, Mike, who is a political conservative and a devout Christian, was embraced by viewers in the Heartland. However, none of these things were considered by the network, and despite its success, “Last Man Standing” was ultimately canceled.
Deadline also claimed that the cancellation of the sitcom serves as a financial hit for 20th Century FOX TV, which had sold LMS in syndication where “Last Man Standing” has been doing very well.
In other news, Allen spoke with Deadline in 2011 to share why he decided to accept ABC’s offer to star in “Last Man Standing.” At the time, the actor just finished starring in “Home Improvement” and said that he received countless offers from different networks to star in a series. According to the actor, he accepted the starring role because of the show’s unique concept. “I was not going to fall into today’s stereotype of the TV husband, a man in flannel shirt with a gray t-shirt over it and a wife much prettier than he deserves. We are not going to do that show,” he said.