Katie LaPotin, Red Alert Politics, May 10, 2013
Sayonara, “1600 Penn.” NBC decided to cancel its political first family sitcom after just 13 episodes.
Co-producer Jon Lovett, a former Obama White House speechwriter, broke the news of the show’s cancellation Thursday via Twitter. Several other cast members, including Jenna Elfman and Josh Gad, also confirmed the cancellation via Twitter.
The show, which was originally billed as a “Modern Family” for the political crowd, focused exclusively on the personal life of President Dale Gilchrist (played by “Independence Day” actor Bill Pullman) and his quirky family.
Elfman, best known for her role as Dharma in ABC’s “Dharma and Greg,” played First Lady Emily Gilchrist, a former political strategist and stepmother to the president’s four children, while Gad portrayed First Son Skip Gilchrist, the president’s well-meaning but immature 25-year-old son. Gad, whose claim to fame was the Broadway musical “Book of Mormon,” also co-created, wrote and produced the show.
Among the show’s most memorable story lines were Gad’s romantic pursuit of White House staffer Stacy Kim, first daughter Becca’s unexpected pregnancy and the ensuing relationship between Becca and the (spoiler alert) presumed father, D.B., a retail worker at a D.C.-area Old Navy.
While the show originally received mixed reviews, nearly 7 million people tuned in to watch the December première. Ratings continually dropped as the season went on, however, and the network burned off the remaining few episodes back in March. The last two episodes only drew in 1.89 million viewers.