• Judd Apatow on Crashing cancelation: HBO told us to stop making it.

    Crashing crashed its last crash at HBO. The Pete Holmes sitcom about an aspiring stand-up comedian will end after the Season 3 finale this Sunday.

    HBO confirmed the news after Judd Apatow appeared on Conan Thursday night. On the late night show, he was very explicit that Crashing is not canceled. “We’re just going to stop making it.”

    Conan O’Brien asked, “What stopped you from making more?” The famed filmmaker comically replied, “They told us we should never make any more [episodes.]”

    Crashing was a hit comedy series with stand-ups due to its realistic portrayal of up-and-coming stand-ups in present-day New York City. Regular comedy pains like barking, bringer shows, and miscast auditions on the series showed the world that stand-up comedy is fucking hard. Previous sitcoms like Seinfeld, Maron, and Maria Bamford’s quirky Netflix series Lady Dynamite showed the lives of working comedians. At least for this writer, open mic-level stand-up comedy is depicted no more honestly than on Crashing.

    Crashing showed the gritty New York stand-up scene

    Many New York City stand-up staples were featured on the series. Because Crashing was about up-and-coming comedians, they didn’t just shoot at the infamous Comedy Cellar. The Grisly Pear, a Greenwich Village bar with a comedian-ran room in the back, gained name recognition with interior and exterior scenes shot in the same place countless unknown comics cut their teeth.

    Apatow and Holmes made three seasons of the HBO show. Many big-name comedians made appearances as themselves including John Mulaney, Sarah Silverman, Jeff Ross, and Amy Schumer. Critics enjoyed Artie Lange’s moving role as himself, a ‘big brother’ figure to the fictional Pete.

    Even fictional roles relied heavily on stand-up talent. Aparna Nancherla, Jamie Lee, Jermaine Fowler, and more regularly starred on the series.

    Crashing became that TV show that friends and family would see, then ask the comedian in their life, “You watch Crashing? Is that real?” The audience for the show actually grew this season, or at least according to Nielsen. Crashing averaged 369,000 live viewers, up about 4.5% from Season 2. That doesn’t count what is likely an even bigger audience watching on other platforms.

    Pete Holmes faces second cancelation

    Holmes always seemed nervous about getting picked up for another season, as he would frantically remind listeners of his podcast, You Made It Weird, to watch it and to watch it live on HBO. He’d frequently make mention that the “numbers matter” and that live viewers help determine if they’ll get picked up again.

    This is not Holmes’s first time losing a series to network executives. The Pete Holmes Show, his late night talk show, ran for 80 episodes on TBS before getting canceled due to insufficient audience numbers.

    Will there be a Crashing movie at HBO?

    Despite not getting picked up for a fourth season, Apatow floated the possibility of a Crashing movie. HBO has gone this route with beloved shows they “did not pick up but also did not cancel” in the past. LGBTQ favorite Looking enjoyed two seasons on the premium cable channel before concluding with a longer “special” (read: movie).

    It’s a sad day for fans of the show and the New York-based comedians who will go back to living the lives they depicted on screen.

    Billy Procida

    Laughspin editor-in-chief Billy Procida is a stand-up comedian in New York City. He hosts The Manwhore Podcast where he talks to women he's hooked up with about sex, dating, and why they didn't work out. Reach him on Twitter.

    WP-Backgrounds Lite by InoPlugs Web Design and Juwelier Schönmann 1010 Wien