Will Pushing Daisies Return To ITV1?

Back in January, I was invited to the press screening for new ITV1 show Pushing Daisies. My write-up was extremely enthusiastic as you’ll see if you read the blog entry Why Anna Is The Real Friel. However, I also expressed a reservation that I am now inclined to view as incredibly portentous. I said: "I must admit, I can’t help feeling that this show’s UK success may be curtailed by the channel that’s bought it. It just doesn’t feel like an ITV1 series (more BBC2, Channel 4 or E4). I really hope I’m wrong…"

As it turned out, I was right. Ratings for the quirky drama dropped from a solid debut of 5.7million viewers to 2.4million for Corpsicle, the last season one episode. And not even a massive 13 million lead-in from the final of Britain’s Got Talent, the most-watched TV programme of the year so far, could help it.

Once upon a time, we were fed a steady diet of reputable American imports on ITV: Happy Days, Mork & Mindy (utterly lame – but that’s the benefit of hindsight), Laverne And Shirley, CHiPs (dance Ponch, dance!), TJ Hooker (calling all lovers of bad TV!) Soap, The Incredible Hulk, The Man From Atlantis (it didn’t last long, but it had cult status – even back then), The A-Team…Somehow, somewhere along the line ITV lost their Uncle Sam Midas touch. Oh they can do shows about obese children and finding the next new British ‘star’ until the cows come home, but getting a US series to work primetime on ITV1? As arduous a task as enduring Fiona Phillips’ Chelsea love-ins.

In a way, ITV were arbiters of their own doom. They splashed out on Pushing Daisies, their first imported peaktime drama since 1996’s Millennium (Chris Carter’s follow-up to The X Files), only to drop the second episode. According to the broadcaster, it had to be skipped because they could only fit in eight of the nine shows before Euro 2008.

What they didn’t anticipate was the absolute fury of fans whose posts on forums up and down the country forced the furore into the media spotlight (the BBC could barely contain its glee in its news bulletins). ITV had to publicly acknowledge their action: "Episode two was the only show we could drop without spoiling the storyline," a spokesman reportedly said. A promise to show the missing link at a later date was also dutifully dispatched. However the damage was done. ITV’s casual disregard for viewers led some to vote with their remote controls and boycott the rest of the series. Others headed for torrent sites and/or swore that they’d wait for the (June 23) DVD release.
Get Pushing Daisies on DVD here

Re-commissioned for a second US season, Pushing Daisies stars Lee Pace, Anna Friel (Goal!, Rogue Trader, Brookside), Chi McBride, Kristen Chenoweth, Swoosie Kurtz, Ellen Greene and is narrated by ‘Carry On’ star Jim Dale. I can’t see ITV1 sticking with it – not in a primetime slot anyway. The Pushing Daisies fiasco has illustrated yet again that US imports are ITV’s bête noire.

Today I am mostly lovin’ – Come Dine With Me. I prefer the old format, but the new Channel 4 shows are simmering along nicely (did you see what I did there?) and Dave Lambert’s sarcastic contributions are hilarious!

Today I am mostly hatin’ – Am I the only person creeped-out by 10 Years Younger’s Nicky Hambleton-Jones?

MSN Editor Coops
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38 Responses to Will Pushing Daisies Return To ITV1?

  1. Alex says:

    I was very annoyed by ITV dropping and it was basically a middle finger up to the fans
    what annoyed me more was when the final episode of the season aired they had a cheek the call the cut episode "a new bonus episode is up on our website". i have however resisted the urge to watch it and preordered the dvd. i think it would succeed if bbc2 or c4 brought the rights to season2 and any other seasons after that.

  2. Pete says:

    An utterly fantastic series with a wonderful visual style and quirky characters and humour. It\’s been a long time since I saw anything worth watching regularly on the TV and this was a breath of fresh air. It would be a serious loss if the program was not kept for the following series – and let\’s hope this time they get their planning right and manage to air every episode! 

  3. Coops - says:

    coops, totally agree with you on this one. I lost all faith in ITV after they dropeed episode two and didn\’t bother with the rest. I said to myself, if they can drop an episode now, they might do it again – what\’s the point in getting hooked just to be messed around? Screw ITV – I watched it online.

  4. colin says:

    I agree with all about the 2nd ep being missed,bit I think the real reason the numbers droped is because the show just lost its spark!
    I watched it until the end but by ep 4 I had just lost intrest,I reall dont care if it comes back on or not,and if by chance it does, I will give it a miss thank you.

  5. Luke says:

    I though the series was amazing i loved it. Would love there to be a second series was something i really enjoyed watching and would deffinatly watch it again. I missed the last episode, so will have to buy the DVD to catch it.

  6. E says:

    I thought the series was fab! Much better than what is on the box at the moment……Really looked forward to watching it and really do hope they do another 🙂

  7. Amber says:

    i love pushing dasies, and so does my family. i didnt even know they missed an episode, and tobe honest i dont care. i hope season 2 comes out over here, i loved it. although it really did remind me of ugly betty!

  8. Bev says:

    I adored this series i knew they had missed an episode and was outraged it was great to have something worth watching on the box at weekend .
    What is itv doing they cant treat consumers this way considering the usual dribble they put on tv i hope they bring another series to uk

  9. Donna says:

    I was so annoyed that ITV missed out an episode. What a bunch of donuts!!  I love Pushing Daisies and my Saturdays aren\’t the same without it.  I hope that Channel 4 show it instead.

  10. jon b says:

     Well… i was really looking forward to the series of pushing dasies ITV advertised it very well but when it came to watching it i\’d never seen so much crap in my life so i was one of the viewers that dropped out!!

  11. Warren says:

    Me and my girlfriend love this series. When ITV allowed viewers to watch the 2nd episode online, it proved to be the most integral part of the storyline. They allow sports programmes to overrun, so they could have shown the 2nd episode on another night easily. Just like Millennium, they don\’t care about their viewers as usual.

  12. adam says:

    A lot of people when they found out about the second episode not being shown looked for it on the internet and decided that they may as well download the whole series so they could watch it without the hit and miss programming of ITV.

  13. Abigail says:

    i absolutely LOVE pushing daisies. was a bit annoyed when i found out that they skipped an episode, so i went and found it on the internet. so good, and shouldn\’t really have been missed. i agree that ITV didn\’t come up to standards about it and i reckon it\’s a BBC2 type of programme. Tim Burton meets Roald Dahl! shame it\’s finished and i can\’t wait for the second series. Hopefully it\’ll be on a better channel……..

  14. Matt says:

    I loved the few episodes of Pushing Daisies I eventually saw but hate ITV. They have simply become a grossly incompetent nothing channel that deserves to be scrapped. Several years ago they screwed up our local TV on Sky (we cannot get our own local area and have to put up with the wrong one so we all boycott it around here and tune in to the Beeb for our local news instead because we can still get it (they even removed the Anglia channel from the high Sky channel numbers and left us another one that isn\’t local either). I caught this programme at a friends house and thought it good but after finding out just how little they still care about their viewing public after skipping episodes, I switched off and found something else to watch instead

  15. Unknown says:

    I have no complaints.  The series was fab and i think itv did a wonderful job of repeating the episodes so I didn\’t miss any ( i expect this was why viewing figures were lower on a saturday night!)  I remember i missed one episode of Ugly Betty and had no chance to catch it again and was bloody outraged with channel 4, but nevertheless i got over it.
    As far as missing episode two was concerned, i was upset but managed to catch it online.  These things happen people – get on with your lives (if, of course, you have one)!!!!

  16. paul says:

    I hpe it returns as I love this show but not to ITV, their treatment of the show and viewers because of Football, proves they have no respect for the audience or creators of such a great show.

  17. Unknown says:

    i hope that pushing daisies does return cause it was brilliant i really enjoyed and it was so unuseill  and i loved it

  18. katie says:

    i\’m sorry but wth? why does it matter what channel its on? what is the point in biycotting a perfectly gd show just because of the channel? all that means is the ratings will be low and then its unlikely it will come back because it will seem like its unpopular.
    boycooting a show because of teh channel is completly stupid, i agree skipping an episode because of the foot ball is unfair, but i also heard tht they skipped it because they felt it wasn\’t right for the timeslot (anyone who hasn\’t seen it look away now), and i can see why they did tht, as it did involve quite a few dead bodies hanging from a ceiling.

  19. Jacqueline says:

    ABSOLUTELY LOVE \’Pushing Daisies\’! So funny, so colourful, so original, so fresh – great new show.  It does seem to me to be on the wrong channel, but that could be because I am so used to watching US drama on Channel 4 and FIVE.  It was stupid of ITV to drop an episode – I\’m sure there was a better way to handle things.  But I\’m looking forward to season two – in its entirety – on whatever channel its on.  Hope it\’s better than the second season of \’Heroes\’ – what a let-down!!
    By the way, you are DEFINITELY not the only one weirded out by Nicky Hambleton-Jones.  What a total creepazoid! And I am a huge fan of \’Come Dine With Me\’.  I prefer the old format, too, but as long as the show stays on in some form – with the same narrator – I\’m as happy as a kiddie in a candy store!

  20. maire aka rhubarb the bemused aka aka madame sylvia, the second daughter of the moon says:

    Wth? Pushing Daisies really really ISN\’T original and it\’s so contrived! The touching dead people idea was a really good concept but why did they try and make it interesting by giving them all weird names and funny, tim burton-esque  costumes, its all been done before! And i could lived with that if it wasn\’t for the narrator and the whole pie-maker thing (a PIE maker -what were they thinking?) They could\’ve made it really original if only they came up with a decent script, some better plotlines and dropped the above things.

  21. DJ says:

    Its dope,(GOOD)!!!

  22. Unknown says:

    Was annoyed about episode 2 being dropped though, Was even more annoyed when they also dropped the repeats on Sundays!!  Missed the last few episodes because I went out on saturday nights and settled down on a Sunday to catch the 2nd showing, only to find there wasn\’t one… ITV are RUBBISH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. sam says:

    love anna friel,love pushing daises,hope to see more!! sure i missed last episode  though as the way it ended,weird.

  24. Laura says:

    I loved Pushing Daisies, but I was so annoyed with ITV I ended up buying all the episodes off iTunes. Possibly the best TV show in ages! I hope it comes back soon!

  25. tara says:

    Well i must say Pushing Daisies was a refreshing change to the usual crap or repeats shown on this channel, ITV used to be one of the front runners in tv i\’m affraid this is no longer the case in our house, if another channel does get it i hope it channel 5, They show some great TV, come on ITV pull your socks up!!

  26. Nathan says:

    I doesn\’t matter what channel it\’s on, the show just wasn\’t very good.
    The creators tried to hard and the whole idea of waking the dead got boring after the first episode.

  27. Hollie Louise says:

    I Thought Pushy Daisies Was Good To Start Off With, But Then It Started To Get A Bit Boring & Ridiculous. Let\’s Hope If & When It Returns, It Will Be More Appealing…

  28. Unknown says:

    I\’m writing from the US and I pulled up this article hoping to find out if the show had been cancelled in the US.  We have no word on whether it will be back in the fall.  I don\’t have much hope that it will so what we saw is all we are probable going to get. 

  29. sophie says:

    I though that it was good but could of been better with more thought. I think that itv where great to put it on on a saturday because there is usually nothing else on. I thought that the ending episodes could of been much better and i can\’t wait for a new series and to find out if they will love each other again.

  30. Nick says:

    There\’s a very simple reason why audiences plummeted for Pushing Daisies – the show is absolutely dreadful. Visually it looked like it was appealing to five-year-olds, and dramatically it felt like it had been written by four-year-olds. The fact that it was broadcast on ITV is completely irrelevant. Just because you broadcast dross, doesn\’t mean people are prepared to put up with it. Instead they will vote with their feet, or in this case remote controls. There is plenty of decent American drama which deserves to be shown primetime in place of this rubbish.

  31. Wendy says:

    I thought pushing dasies was Fantastic I watched every ep.
    What does it matter what channel it\’s on it is great to see ITV do something different instead of X-factor and Britain`s Got Talent! (I watch both) and it\’s good family entertainment…

  32. Carn says:

    I loved it despite the fact I\’m more into action shows (though to be honest I haven\’t found a lot of those worth watching recently,  Heroes in particular is awful).  Pushing Daisies is the best thing ITV have shown in years but I didn\’t watch it there.  I\’d downloaded it previously as I knew ITV would screw up somehow and skipping the second episode was a big mistake.  ITV1 is just a near totally terrible channel.  I couldn\’t stand all that Britain\’s Got \’Talent\’ garbage either.  ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4 at least show some great re-runs (usually of quality ITV shows from a time where they used to be excellent) and some decent movies now and then.

  33. Kelly says:

    I thought it was refreshing to escape into the world of pushing daisies, sure its not for everyone, but its corny, romantic and sweet and the visuals brightened my day, I look forward to a second series! Hopefully none of the episodes will be dropped this time!

  34. Sali says:

    The main problem with Pushing Daisies as far as I was concerned was the fact that it was scheduled up against Casualty, a long-running, popular series. I would gladly have watched Pushing Daisies over Casualty, but the rest of my family didn\’t feel the same way. And when it comes to disrespect for viewers, ITV are amateurs compared with C4/E4, who repeatedly push good quality American dramas into graveyard slots.

  35. janice says:

    i tried hard to like this series but found it hard to watch. however my children found it totally fab. must be my age ??????

  36. XO Jyoti says:

    i luv  pushing daises its a really fab program, hopefully it will be back on tv soon cuz im missin it!
    its the sorta film you cant get bored of watching!!
    xox 🙂

  37. karen says:

    I missed the last episode of Pushing Daisies due to being on hol but noticed an extra episode available only on itv carchup. Does anyone know if this was the \’missed\’ episode and will it be repeated on catch up as I missed that too!

  38. Coops - says:

    (no name), quick! You need to be watching ITV2. This Friday (25 July), the penultimate eisode \’Bitter Sweets\’ will air again at 8pm so you still have a chance to see the final episode. As for the second episode, it was indeed available on itv.com/catchup, but it\’s no longer available.

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