Larry Wilmore Called Cancellation Racist, But His Show Just Sucked

LarryThe cancellation of the show had nothing to do with purging “blackness” from late night TV; the fact is, the show sucked and people didn’t watch it.

Since the cancellation of The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore, the liberal media has taken to the soapbox to declare race as a motivating factor.  Media outlets such as The Daily Beast have cried foul over the decision, saying things like, “Just as Comedy Central made a huge leap for diversity in late-night by giving Wilmore his own show in the first place, the network is shoving the progress two steps back by canceling it.”

A writer at The Daily Beast also said, “No series should be kept on air for tokenistic purposes, but Wilmore was a necessary voice in late-night, and a determined one at that. ”  That’s right, no show should stay on if there is no audience, unless of course, you’re black.  Then it should stay on.

In a statement, Wilmore fueled the same sentiment, “But I’m also saddened and surprised we won’t be covering this crazy election or ‘The Unblackening’ as we’ve coined it,” he continued. “And keeping it 100, I guess I hadn’t counted on ‘The Unblackening’ happening to my time slot as well.”

The network (Comedy Central) had a very different story about their decision.  “We thank Larry and The Nightly Show staff for their tireless efforts across the past two years and the conversations the show generated by addressing social issues of great importance to the country, always challenging people’s attitudes, perceptions, and bias,” Comedy Central said in a statement. Comedy Central president Kent Alterman alluded to the show’s ratings on Monday, telling the New York Times the show “hasn’t resonated.”

“Even though we’ve given it a year and a half, we’ve been hoping against hope that it would start to click with our audience, but it hasn’t happened and we haven’t seen evidence of it happening,” said Alterman.

The Colbert Report averaged 1.3 million total viewers in February 2014, according to Nielsen. A year later, Wilmore’s recently launched Nightly Show was holding a respectable average of 812,000 viewers. Moving forward another year to this month, Wilmore averaged 580,000 total viewers each night in the first week of February.

In other words, Wilmore’s audience is 55 percent lower than Colbert’s was in the same timeslot and 29 percent lower than Wilmore was attracting a year ago.

larry3The struggle to keep viewers is not Wilmore’s alone. A year ago, Jon Stewart’s Daily Show was drawing 1.2 million viewers. In the first week of February, Nielsen showed replacement host Noah’s audience down by more than 30 percent, averaging 812,000 each night.

Here’s a look at the massive viewer exodus that the Nightly Show saw over the year and a half.

  • January 2015: 885,000
  • February 2015: 849,000
  • March 2015: 726,000
  • April 2015: 634,000
  • May 2015: 615,000
  • June 2015: 708,000
  • July 2015: 773,000
  • August 2015: 605,000
  • September 2015: 405,000
  • October 2015: 489,000
  • November 2015: 489,000
  • December 2015: 516,000
  • January 2016: 511,000
  • February 2016: 564,000
  • March 2016: 548,000
  • April 2016: 527,000
  • May 2016: 532,000
  • June 2016: 547,000
  • July 2016: 541,000

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