The revival of “Last Man Standing” was a rating success Friday night as the debut of its seventh season — its first on Fox — was the highest rated show for the night.
“Tim Allen and Fox are waking up to some very good news this morning,” wrote EW’s James Hibbered. “ABC not so much.”
Viewers across the nation were disappointed when ABC canceled the popular show in the spring of 2017 after six seasons. The show was off the air for a season and was then picked up by Fox.
On Friday, “Last Man Standing” averaged a 1.8 rating in adults 18-49, Variety reported.
The 8 p.m. show drew 8 million viewers.
The show’s Fox debut outstripped its season six debut on ABC, when the conservative-themed comedy scored a 1.1 rating with 6 million viewers.
“Like with the huge ratings return of ‘Roseanne’ last spring, the strong numbers for LMS likely indicate an appetite for shows that provide a different perspective to most fare on TV,” Deadline explained.
According to EW, “this was Fox’s most-watched comedy on any night in nearly seven years.”
“The comedy was not expected to grow because, frankly, older shows rarely improve year over year, changing networks usually does not boost an audience and Fox has long struggled to get viewers to their Friday night lineup. But LMS has had the benefit of more press attention than usual thanks to the network shakeup, so perhaps that helped matters.”
As noted on AOL, the show included some not-so-subtle digs at the fact that it was canceled by ABC.
“Why would they cancel a popular show that everybody loves?” character Kyle Anderson says as he unsuccessfully searches for his favorite TV show.
“Maybe they’re a buncha idiots,” calls out Mike Baxter, the character played by Tim Allen.
When Anderson finally find the show he wants, Baxter asks, “Am I wrong or is it like way better on this network?”
He then turned to the camera.
“Well, it’s pretty rare, but the show must have a lot of loyal, kicka– fans, huh?” he said.
The theme of the show was essentially that people need to learn to stick together and respect each other’s views, no matter how different they may be.
Many have speculated ABC executives cancelled the show due to its conservative politics. Indeed, the show’s lead character played by Allen — Mike Baxter, a conservative father — often makes light of liberals and progressive politics.
Politics isn’t the goal of the show, though, Allen revealed to Fox News. The show is similar to his other television shows, such as “Home Improvement,” for which Allen is most well-known.
“When it comes down to it — we legitimately have more liberal writers than we have conservative writers,” he revealed. “They write funny stuff, and everybody has learned a little bit about how to tweak it and give people a little zest here and there — but it’s all about the theater,” he told Fox News.
– wire services