Ben Elton and Sue Perkins sitcoms axed – Daily TV round-up

Jo Brand's Bafta-winning Getting On is also cancelled

Ben Elton and Sue Perkins' BBC sitcoms have been axed.

BBC1's 'The Wright Way', which starred David Haig as a health and safety boss and was written by Elton, was hammered by critics, and will not be renewed for a second series.

Perkins' show, 'Heading Out', about a lesbian vet struggling to come out to her parents, suffered a similar fate as well as dwindling ratings on BBC2.

The BBC's comedy boss Shane Allen said that the battering on social media was among the factors that has seen Elton's 'The Wright Way' axed.

“Ben was really bruised by the reception. He felt, ‘If people aren’t loving this, I am not going to put myself through it again’,” he said.

“Maybe ten, 15 years ago, you might have gone, ‘What did people like about it? Which are the characters that worked?’ but people are quick to crucify these days.

“People feel passionate and that’s good, but I do worry in a world of social media and Twitter that people are saying, 40 seconds in, ‘This is s***’.

“A lot of things are loved retrospectively. 'Only Fools And Horses' took two series before it bedded in. The danger is people give up and channel controllers lose their nerve. I find it quite depressing.”

But he defended Elton's panned offering, despite its roundly terrible reviews.

“It didn’t catch fire with the audience but it wasn’t what you’d call a flop - over a week it had 3.5million to four million viewers,” he added.

“Ben set out to write an old-fashioned comedy and he did exactly that. It was a valiant effort from the guy who co-wrote Blackadder and The Young Ones.”

It also emerged that Jo Brand's BBC4 Bafta-winning sitcom 'Getting On', set on an NHS hospital ward, will also not be returning.

Meanwhile, those waiting for the new series of 'Miranda' could have to wait as long as two years before it's back on screens.

“They might have to wait a while,” said Allen. “It’s a way off yet. She’s really, really busy. There isn’t even time to make a Christmas special this year.”

Similarly, 'The Royle Family' will not be returning for its annual Christmas special in 2013. [The Sun/Daily Mirror]

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