“The Good Wife” creators Michelle and Robert King will step away from their show at the end of the series’ current season. CBS, however, isn’t ready to call it a day for Alicia Florrick just yet.
“We have a deep bench [of writers] on the show,” CBS Entertainment president Glenn Geller said Tuesday at the winter TV press tour. “Some of the writers have been there from the beginning. We haven’t made any determination. It’s just January, so we haven’t determined if there will be another season or not.”
The Kings have another show in the works at CBS, “BrainDead,” which will debut in the summer, and “a few other things going,” Geller says. He mentions Craig Turk, a fellow EP of “The Good Wife,” as someone who could step in as showrunner.
Whether that’s a good idea is very much an open question. Changing showrunners is a fairly common occurrence, and a lot of series survive it. When a creator or creators have been at the helm since day one on a long-running show, however, it’s a tricky proposition. “Supernatural” has thrived in the years since creator Eric Kripke gave up his day-to-day role, but for every show like that, there’s a “Gilmore Girls,” whose fans didn’t much care for the final season without creator Amy Sherman-Palladino.
The Kings have a reputation as hands-on showrunners: They still write several episodes every season and have a hand in the scripts they aren’t credited with as well.
As for ratings, “The Good Wife” is at the low end of CBS’ lineup this season, averaging a 1.06 same-day rating in adults 18-49. The network has said it can live with an older-skewing audience on Sunday nights, but for a seven-year-old show (i.e., one that’s not cheap to produce), its numbers are borderline.
If the Kings are ready to move on from “The Good Wife,” maybe CBS should follow their lead.