Lifetime has announced that it has cancelled Army Wives, the longest-running scripted series in network history, after seven seasons. The series finale, which aired this past June, won’t be the end of the road for the show, however, as there’s a two-hour retrospective planned for next year.
“There is no denying how special Army Wives has been to both Lifetime and the television landscape,” Lifetime GM Rob Sharenow said in a statement. “By taking on a very relevant and timely issue, it has brilliantly captured the challenges our military families endure and the bravery they and their loved ones display while serving our country. It has been an honor to be the home of Army Wives. We also want to thank Army Wives’ passionate legion of fans and everyone involved with the series: ABC Studios, Mark Gordon and Jeff Melvoin, Tanya Biank, every single cast member, as well as the crew and community of Charleston, South Carolina. Without their dedication, effort and loyalty, Army Wives’ seven wonderful seasons would not have been possible; and for that we are very grateful.”
The writing was on the wall for the series during its sixth season hiatus, which saw original stars Kim Delaney and Sally Pressman departing and taking a reduced role, respectively. Generally, a series only goes through such significant cast changes when its financials are nearing the point of being too steep to continue, but Army Wives ended up restocking its cast with several new additions this season and got to wrap things up, more or less, on its own terms. Ratings for the final season were reportedly down by about 20%.
Undoubtedly, Army Wives leaves Lifetime in better shape upon its departure than it arrived, as Devious Maids became a breakout hit this summer, The Client List posted strong numbers for two seasons (it’s yet to be renewed for a third), and Drop Dead Diva came back from cancellation thanks to a dedicated fanbase. Lifetime will next premiere supernatural drama Witches of East End on Sunday, October 6th.
Do you think that Lifetime made the right decision in bringing Army Wives to an end? Are you satisfied with how the show wrapped up this summer? Which of the Wives will you miss the most?