By MARK LINDSLEY
Season one of “Kevin Can Wait” was all about the lives of Kevin Gable and his wife Donna, played by Kevin James and Erinn Hayes respectively. The sitcom focused on their lives and the lives of their family and friends. The show’s second season began very differently.
When the second season premiered, Donna was missing and James had a new co-star, Leah Remini, who played his wife on the show “King of Queens.” Instead of focusing on two parents interacting with their family and friends, “Kevin Can Wait,” is now going to be all about a single father figuring out how to raise his children by himself while also coping with the death of his wife.
Many of the sitcom’s fans are now boycotting the show and announcing their boycotts on Twitter, according to the New York Daily News. Although Hayes hasn’t publicly made any negative comments about her abrupt removal from the show, she has been liking a lot of these boycott tweets.
There are three main reasons that have been cited
for these boycotts. Fans say they were big fans of Hayes’ character, the show now just feels like a “King of Queens” remake, or they didn’t feel like Donna Gable’s death was acknowledged adequately. They started season two a year after Donna’s death, never explained how she died and only mentioned her death two brief times in the first episode of the season before moving on as if a major plot twist hadn’t just happened.
James, who is also one of the show’s producers, has taken a lot of flak for this move, but explained the reasoning behind the change up in an interview with the New York Daily News. “The plot of the show didn’t have enough drive. If we got through a second season, I wouldn’t see us getting through a third one. We were literally just running out of ideas” James said.
The executive producer of the show, Rob Long, attempted to create some excitement for their new direction when he was interviewed by TVLine.
“The goal was to give Kevin’s character a real drive and a real predicament [involving] how a family comes back together [after tragedy],” Long said.
Long also explained why the show didn’t tell the audience how Donna Gable was killed.
“Out of respect for the character of Donna — and certainly the way that Erinn Hayes portrayed her — it seemed like the only right and fair way to treat her character,” Long said.
The comments from James and Long don’t appear
to be working, as the show’s viewers continue to tune out. “Kevin Can Wait” had 10.2 million viewers watch the season two premiere, 6.6 million watch the second episode and the size of their audience is now at nearly half of its original amount after five episodes, according to the International Business Times.
Although the ratings continue to drop, the show
hasn’t been cancelled yet. People can still tune in to see if Kevin Gable gets back together with his former partner and current coworker Vanessa Cellucci, played by Remini. Anybody who wants to find out, or just wants to see what all the fuss is about, can see “Kevin Can Wait” Monday nights at 9 p.m. on CBS.