ABC has renewed the Tim Allen fronted comedy Last Man Standing for a fifth season. The pick up, which is for a further 22 episodes, comes after pro-longed negotiations between the network and series producer 20th Century Fox Television, which were not able to close in time for ABC’s recent mass-renewal.
Unlike it’s Friday night time-slot companion Cristela, the fate of Last Man Standing has never been in any real doubt. The show has proven to be a strong performer for ABC, being one of the only shows in recent memory to defy expectations and not only survive but (to some degree) thrive on Friday nights.
In fact, 20th Century Fox Television was so sure that Last Man Standing would be returning next season that they recently tapped Matt Berry to serve as showrunner on the upcoming season, replacing the outgoing Tim Doyle. He becomes the fourth showrunner for the comedy, following in the footsteps of Doyle, Kevin Abbott and series creator Jack Burditt.
There is absolutely no question that Last Man Standing will be returning to its long-time Friday night time-slot, but with Cristela Alonzo’s Cristela not returning all eyes turn to which comedy might be paired with Last Man Standing on the typically lower rated night. ABC will make it official on Tuesday, but based on what I’m hearing either The Middle or new Ken Jeong comedy Dr Ken will be heading for Friday night.