This past week saw the series finale of Bates Motel air on A&E, which turns out will be last scripted television show we will see on the network, who will now return to its roots and air only reality TV from here on in.
The move to unscripted television has been in the works for a while over at A&E, who has not put a scripted show on the air since 2015, but has gone on to launch a few reality shows including Live PD, which just got their season extended, and #LeahRemini: Scientology and the Aftermath.
A&E's General Manager, Rob Sharenow, talked to Deadline about the reasoning for making their schedule completely reality based:
I think it was a good time to say, ‘We are going to double down on nonfiction content where we are having a lot of success. The market’s really hungry for it.'
Rob also went on to talk about the scripted television shows that have had a steady presence on the network, more so in the last nine years.
“I am extremely proud of all the scripted that we’ve done. I think Bates Motel was one of the best shows on television"
Now that A&E has aired it's last scripted TV show, let's take a look at the TV shows that the network has given us over the years:
100 Centre Street
100 Centre Street was the first scripted show on A&E, and looked at the private and professional lives of staff of a New York City courthouse. It lasted two seasons from 2001-2002 and starred Alan Arkin (Argo), Paula Devicq (Party of Five) and Margo Martindale (The Americans).
A recovering drug addict uses his second chance at life to help people end their own addictions. Benjamin Bratt (Doctor Strange) and Grace Park (Battlestar Galactica) starred in the series that lasted for 26 episodes in 2008-2009.
One of the networks most popular series, Longmire was based on the Walt Longmire novels by Craig Johnson and is a modern western that revolves around a Wyoming sheriff. Robert Taylor (Kong: Skull Island), Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica), Cassidy Freeman (Smallville), Bailey Chase (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer) and Lou Diamond Phillips (SGU Stargate Universe) starred in the series that lasted for three seasons on A&E before being cancelled, ending on a cliffhanger and angering fans.
Matt Passmore (Satisfaction) played an ex-police officer from Chicago who moves to a small Florida town and ends up joining the state police force. The Glades aired for four seasons from 2010-2013.
Lasting for five seasons and 50 episodes, #BatesMotel was the longest A&E scripted show on the channel, and showed the life of a teenage Norman Bates and his relationship with his mother, Norma. Freddie Highmore (The Art of Getting By) and Vera Farmiga (The Conjuring 2) starred in this prequel to Psycho.
I think what will make this move better for the network is that A&E focuses on smart reality series' based on things like crime and lifestyle. Considering the network's ratings for unscripted shows have been going up and up for the last couple of years, it doesn't seem like this change anytime soon.
Do you think this is a smart move for A&E?
(Source: Deadline via TVLine)