By Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist Published Oct 17, 2011 at 11:00 AM

ABC has made official what many of us knew when the reboot of "Charlie's Angels" was first announced: It was a dumb idea.

The network pulled the "Angels" from its schedule on Friday and effectively canceled the show.

Ratings had been declining – although last week's show had an uptick in viewers. That wasn't enough to save the show. But this one was never going to pull in good ratings.

You hear about shows like this throughout the process, even before the pilot is filmed, and you just know they'll flop.

NBC made a wise decision dumping "Friday Night Lights" alum Adrianne Palicki's "Wonder Woman" remake before it actually aired. Yes, there's a comic book fan audience out there, but that's more of a cable TV niche audience than one that can support most network shows.

Another young actress who cut her teeth on NBC's critically acclaimed "FNL" is Minka Kelly, the best known of the three "Angels."

They're both talented actresses and their careers won't be tarnished by failed shows. But the network folks who signed off on these shows ("Wonder Woman" wasn't dumped 'til the last moment), deserve to have their programming duties taken away.

You have to wonder who thought 2011 was the right time for re-assembling a team of hot babes to resurrect the very 1970s idea of "Charlie's Angels." Yes, there were a couple big-screen remakes, but a series? Now?

Does anybody out there think "Charlie's Angels" deserved more time to establish an audience?

If you see "Charlie's Angels" pop back onto the schedule, don't assume it's coming back. ABC is expected to burn off the un-aired episodes of "Charlie's Angels" at some point.

It's done for good.

As for shows that should go, there's NBC's unpleasant "Whitney," which was given a full-season pickup despite ratings numbers that are going in the wrong direction. And ABC's cardb0ard-character "Pan Am," which actually does better when when Nielsen Media Research's DVR ratings are included.

On TV: As long as we're talking cancellations, Jason Lee's "Memphis Beat" has been axed after two seasons by TNT.

  • If you'd like to catch NBC's "Grimm" before its Oct. 28 network debut, you can follow the show on Twitter and watch the fairy tale-themed pilot in advance.
  • Fox is airing its first "America's Most Wanted" special, the two-hour "50 Fugitives, 50 States" on Oct. 29 at 7. John Walsh will host as usual. The regular show will pop up on Lifetime later in the season.
  • Based on the weekend's "Saturday Night Live," it looks like the show is off until Nov. 5, when Charlie Day of FX's "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" will host and Maroon 5 will be the musical guest.

A dicey bit of sports coverage: ABC moved into quiet and serious mode Sunday afternoon after a 15-car pileup which led to the death of Dan Wheldon.

While the video of the crash was replayed, it wasn't overdone and the wait for word that Wheldon had died (that word was bouncing all around Twitter), was handled tastefully.

Here's Wheldon's conversation with David Letterman from June, after he won the Indianapolis 500, a chance to see more than just a clip of him:

Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist

Tim Cuprisin is the media columnist for He's been a journalist for 30 years, starting in 1979 as a police reporter at the old City News Bureau of Chicago, a legendary wire service that's the reputed source of the journalistic maxim "if your mother says she loves you, check it out." He spent a couple years in the mean streets of his native Chicago, and then moved on to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and USA Today, before coming to the Milwaukee Journal in 1986.

A general assignment reporter, Cuprisin traveled Eastern Europe on several projects, starting with a look at Poland after five years of martial law, and a tour of six countries in the region after the Berlin Wall opened and Communism fell. He spent six weeks traversing the lands of the former Yugoslavia in 1994, linking Milwaukee Serbs, Croats and Bosnians with their war-torn homeland.

In the fall of 1994, a lifetime of serious television viewing earned him a daily column in the Milwaukee Journal (and, later the Journal Sentinel) focusing on TV and radio. For 15 years, he has chronicled the changes rocking broadcasting, both nationally and in Milwaukee, an effort he continues at

When he's not watching TV, Cuprisin enjoys tending to his vegetable garden in the backyard of his home in Whitefish Bay, cooking and traveling.