Two years ago CBS premiered the event-series Under the Dome to huge numbers. The network initially planned the series to tell Stephen King’s story on the small-screen in just one season. However, given the ratings the show received, CBS made the executive decision to grow their new summer event-series into something more than a one-and-done limited series scenario. In an attempt to maintain the series hype in its second season, CBS brought in Stephen King to write the premiere episode.
This renewal may have been seen as a smart move at the time, as the summer event-series in question seems to have opened the doors for other such programs — I’m looking at you Extant and Zoo — to be picked up by the network. However, after its first season came to a conclusion, the viewership for Under the Dome steadily continued to dip.
Two years ago, Under the Dome broke new ground in the summer and became an instant hit on CBS, as well as with viewers around the world. Dome’s event storytelling and multi-platform business model paved the way for more original summer programming with the successful rollouts of Extant and Zoo. We’re excited to present the final chapter in Chester’s Mill as the story comes full circle, with the Dome coming down as dramatically as it went up.
In an age of television where revivals and movie adaptations seem to be all the rage, the concept of a limited event-series has its perks. Exploring a BBC-like single season story narrative that has a beginning, middle, and end is something relatively new for American programs. And while shows like American Horror Story and Fargo are examples of a new trend of programs that focus on fresh stories and characters in each iteration, it feels like broadcast TV networks cannot grasp the overall definition of what the term “event-series” means.
For example, NBC’s kooky medical drama The Night Shift was meant as a single season summer series when it premiered last year but the over-the-top silly nature of the drama won viewers over and those ratings drove the network to re-up the series for a second outing, which sadly, hasn’t delivered in the same wonderfully stupid way it did in 2014. And don’t get me started on Fox’s desire to bring Wayward Pines back for more episodes…
CBS may be on the right track with bringing the Stephen King-inspired event-series to an end. It’s too early to tell what this will mean for shows like the James Patterson-inspired Zoo, but it’s pretty possible that the crazy series will stay around for awhile. That all being said, it doesn’t look like the series is disappearing anytime soon. After its series finale airs on September 10th, all three seasons of Under The Dome will be available for your viewing pleasure on Amazon Prime Instant Video.
(Via CBS News)