How many viewers does it take for NBC to keep a program on Monday night television?

You'd get the same answer if you asked the amount of licks it takes to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop.

First they cancelled Surface, then Heroes and now the latest fan favorite The Cape.

All three of these shows averaged over 5 million viewers per episode, but that is just not good enough in today's TV age. No, it's over 10 million viewers or, quality be damned, you will be cancelled.

Forget giving shows a fair shake to gain a fan base. The Cape was cancelled after only 8 episodes! 8 episodes! Could you imagine if an on-going comic series was cancelled after only 8 issues? Okay, maybe it has happened a few times, but it is FAR and few between.

Surface, at least, received 15 episodes before getting the can. Of course, Heroes received four seasons prior to it's abrupt end, but truly the first three seasons averaged over the coveted 10 million viewers mark. The fourth and final season received over 9.5 million viewers and STILL it was cancelled! Close just isn't close enough with these people.

Could you imagine if NBC in the 1990's would have given the same treatment to Seinfeld? Seasons 1 & 2 did not achieve anywhere near 10 million viewers. But somebody there had the foresight to stick with it. We would literally be living in a different world today if the first two seasons of Seinfeld were held to this same ridiculous standard, causing history's greatest sitcom to never have a its time to shine.

Not that The Cape was destined to change the world or anything. The show is what it is. A straight forward, slam-bam, super hero action serial. It's a little campy at times, but I don't think that is entirely unintentional, and it really works. It's a show where the good guys are good, and the bad guys are the bad guys (and nowadays, by "Hollywood" standards that just doesn't sell). The Cape has action and pay-off, two elements desperately missing from most of the recent super hero television programs.

Y'know what the worst part of all this is?.. We won't get to see Summer Glau every week! First Firefly, then Sarah Conner Chronicles, now The Cape. NBC really just needs to go back on their recent Wonder Woman casting decision and give  the role up to Ms. Glau. Okay.. okay... that's a terrible idea... NBC is just going to cancel the Wonder Woman show after a few episodes anyway.

If you feel so inclined, please join me in voicing your disdain to NBC directly:

NBC Studios Address:
3000 W. Alameda Ave.
Burbank, CA. 91523

NBC Street Address:
30 Rockfeller Plaza
Room 1802
New York, NY 10112