Sitcoms have been a television staple for ages having a strong influence on daily lives. Such early sitcoms are still reminisced due to the show’s impactful popularity. Amongst all the high-ranking fantasy sitcoms like The Addams Family and The Munsters was the Elizabeth Montgomery starer Bewitched. Let’s Know Why Was Bewitched Cancelled.
Bewitched was a show about the struggles of the ‘non-conventional couple’ Samantha and Darrin. Samantha is the nose-twitching witch, while Darrin is an ordinary mortal. The seasons were about how Samantha’s family disapproved of the couple and their attempts to break them up. The sitcom was aired in 1964 and stopped airing in the year 1872. The public went feral when the show stopped ending. Countless conclusions were made regarding the sitcom’s abrupt closure. The believed rumor was the falling of TRP, but was that really why it was canceled?
One of the main reasons for the show getting canceled was the lead actress herself. It is said that the actress had planned to put her acting career to an end even before signing up for the sitcom. Due to the husband (later ex-husband) Asher who saw immense acting talent in his wife, she signed up for Bewitched. Even though all the seasons were a hit, and there were plans for a season 9 and 10, Elizabeth withdrew from the show, putting an end to it.
She had grown tired of her role in the fifth season itself but stayed due to ABC offering her an undeniable offer. She was offered a similar amount again before the ninth season but she firmly refused and proceeded to sign up for much more contrasting roles. It was also during this time that her marriage was starting to unravel and she divorced her husband a year later.
One of the major reasons for the show’s ending was the complex relations involved. A major reason for the Asher Elizabeth divorce was the couple being unfaithful. Asher had constant extramarital affairs, which made Elizabeth also revert to other people. One of her affairs was the director of the show Richard Michaels. Richard was smitten by her beauty and truly fell for her. Another one of her admirers was her co-star, Dick York. The situation was quite a hot topic in the media after her divorce.
The replacement of Dick York changed the chemistry of the actors.
Dick York was replaced by Dick Sargent in the sixth season of Bewitched. York had to be replaced as he sustained serious back injuries which made him pass out on set. After casting Sargent, the viewers claimed to have noticed a slight difference in the on screen chemistry of the couple. The ratings of the show also dropped to some extent.
Romantic affairs weren’t the only thing contributing to the end of the show. The cast of the show is said to be very dysfunctional off-screen. The actors barely got along and had a bad temperament, Agnes Moorehead (on screen Endora) was rumored to be the most problematic actor on the set of Bewitched.
Elizabeth was pregnant thrice throughout the shooting of Bewitched. Her first pregnancy was hidden through sly camera angles, while her other two pregnancies were incorporated into the plotline. The shooting during her first pregnancy was very hectic as she had to shoot the scenes she missed again after giving birth, becoming one of the reasons for her wanting to stop doing the role.
Uncertainty and Character
As mentioned before, Montgomery wanted to end her acting career even before signing up for bewitched. She has always had a love-hate relationship with acting which caused her a lot of stress. She was also very fed up with portraying the monotonous character of the friendly neighborhood witch, trying to live a normal mortal life.
Regardless, of all the said reasons, Bewitched was a very loved show due to its impeccable plot, and light-hearted comedy portrayed by the over-the-top scenes. It was also a revolutionary sitcom in terms of visual effects as the spell casting scenes comprised visual and audio effects, a concept very new to the crowd. The show also strengthened Elizabeth’s acting career and as much as she wanted to run away from the character of Samantha Stevens, it surely is one of the most memorable and celebrated characters in American Television.
Q1) Is the cast of Bewitched still alive?
No, all the leading actors are deceased. The only living cast is the child actor playing Tabitha, Erin Murphy.
Q2) Did York and Sargent get along?
Yes, despite of them having rocky relationships with Agnes Moorehead they were good friends for a long time until York passed away.
Q3) Who was Pandora Spocks?
Pandora Spocks was the pseudo name given to Selena, Samantha’s wild cousin. Selena was another character played by Elizabeth.