Sky One has decided to axe its historical sea-faring family-orientated action romp Sinbad after just one twelve-episode series. The Impossible Pictures series, generously-budgeted and lavishly-filmed on location in Malta, starring Elliott Knight as a teenage version of the legendary mythical hero, launched on Sky One in July 2012 with a rating of just under 2 million viewers, at that time a new high for an original Sky drama commission. But by episode three half the audience had fallen away and the show hovered just under the one million viewer mark for much of the rest of its run. Sky One controller Stuart Murphy explained, when announcing the show’s commission in August 2010, that Sinbad would offer an alternative to Doctor Who for “a younger, cooler family who like sexy, cool heroes.” Sinbad clearly was neither sexy nor cool enough; as his ship sank slowly beneath the waves during its run, the apparently deeply unsexy Doctor Who was back on BBC1 and attracting impressively-healthy audiences of over 8 million viewers for its five episode mini-season last September.
But the TV industry is notoriously reluctant to admit failure. Sinbad was clearly designed and expected to run for several seasons - many of the cast spoke of how they hoped the show and their characters would develop as it progressed - but Sky’s official statement attempts to paint a different picture.
“As a broad, family entertainment channel, Sinbad was the perfect drama to showcase Sky 1’s ambitions for long-running, blockbuster series. We were thrilled with the cast and the production team at Impossible, however, we feel that Sinbad’s story has now been told. We’re in development on a number of exciting new projects and look forward to sharing more news with our customers very soon.”
Starburst says: Yeah, right…
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