Life in pieces seasons

These Are the Most Surprising TV Renewals & Cancellations Of 2019

Each year, generally in May, the network TV series that air during the regular school season are either renewed or canceled, depending on numerous factors (though mostly ratings). The big announcement for most (but definitely not all) of these shows came on Friday, May 10 this year. While there were some expected renewals like ABC sitcom Fresh Off the Boat and sad, yet assumed cancelations like Fox film-adaptation Lethal Weapon, others were more shocking. Here are a few of the most surprising thus far.

Renewed: Station 19

We’re fired up! #Station19 is coming back for Season 3!

— Station 19 (@Station19) May 10, 2019

This firefighter-focused drama on ABC is the second spinoff of record-breaking medical series Grey’s Anatomy. It follows Ben Warren, formerly a doctor at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, on his new career path at the titular Seattle firehouse.

Station 19 has been doing OK in its ratings, but it’s certainly not a powerhouse like its predecessor. Previous Grey’s spinoff Private Practice lasted a respectable six seasons before its own cancelation back in 2013. A number of well-received crossover events paired with a new showrunner (Grey’s Anatomy’s Krista Vernoff) have apparently given the network enough confidence to renew Station 19 for a third season.

Canceled: Life in Pieces

Never really a bright side to getting cancelled but…on the plus side though, CBS still has episodes to air. Quite a few in fact. So there’s still some laughs to be had. Hope you enjoy them. And thanks again #LifeInPieces

— Colin Hanks (@ColinHanks) May 10, 2019

This is a cute CBS sitcom with an ordinary premise but unique execution. Life in Pieces follows the Los Angeles-based Short family, which is made up of a set of grandparents, their three children, and several grandchildren, in a series of vignettes. Each episode features four smaller stories, many of which tie together eventually.

The series has a fairly respectable cast including James Brolin, Colin Hanks, and Betsy Brandt. It’s Modern Family-esque, but with less diversity, and a lot of great guest stars. Despite having a solid fan base, the ratings for Life in Pieces have dipped a bit, resulting in its cancelation after four seasons.

Renewed: Single Parents

Apple juice all around! We’re coming back for Season 2! #SingleParents

— Single Parents (@SingleParentsTV) May 10, 2019

When it comes to sitcoms, the first season is definitely a make-or-break situation. Single Parents has a cute premise, which can be gleaned from its title, but doesn’t have a lot that makes it terribly unique, so it was definitely one that managed to squeak by when it was renewed for a Season 2.

Fortunately, the series has a lot on its side. Single Parents was created by New Girl showrunner Liz Meriwether and writer J.J. Philbin (yes, the daughter of Regis Philbin). It also features a solid cast, including Taran Killam, Leighton Meester, and Brad Garrett. After having a full 23 episodes to establish its direction, this is a show that is definitely on an upswing.

Canceled: The Passage

Book adaptations are always a risk, and The Passage was no exception. The Fox thriller series starred Mark-Paul Gosselaar as a federal agent working to help the scientists of Project Noah as well as the experiment’s young test subject, as an apocalypse looms nigh.

The series managed to garner a dedicated following, but sadly, the numbers just weren’t there. After its 10-episode first season ended in March, fans eagerly awaited renewal news — until now. Gosselaar posted a tribute to the now-canceled series on Instagram, sharing that he is “truly saddened” that it won’t continue.

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CBS comedy Life in Pieces returns Thursday, April 18. It represents the fourth season for the show. The season starts with two episodes.

This season the Short family welcomes new family members and deals with an unexpected health crisis, and long-hidden secrets are revealed as well.

Dianne Wiest, James Brolin, Zoe Lister-Jones, Colin Hanks, Angelique Cabral, Thomas Sadoski, Betsy Brandt, Dan Bakkedahl, Niall Cunningham, Holly J. Barrett, Giselle Eisenberg and Hunter King are in the cast.

Related: CBS Orders More ‘Young Sheldon’

The show is about “one big happy family and their sometimes awkward, often hilarious and ultimately beautiful milestone moments as told by its various members,” according to CBS. “As the family’s lives unfold in four short stories each week, they try to savor these little pieces of time that flash by but stay with you forever, because these moments add up to what life’s all about.”

Justin Adler, Aaron Kaplan, Jeff Morton and Barbie Adler are executive producers for 20th Century Fox Television in association with Kapital Entertainment.

Life in Pieces Season 5: Premiere Date, Cast, Recap, Update

‘Life in Pieces’ is an American sitcom television series that airs on CBS. The show is created by Justin Adler and first premiered on September 21, 2015. This series follows the lives and stories of three generations of a family. It is produced by 40 or 50 Years, Inc. and Kapital Entertainment in association with 20th Century Fox Television. Adler also serves as the showrunner, while the executive producers include Justin Adler, himself, and Aaron Kaplan, Jeff Morton, Jason Winer, Brad Copeland as well as Barbara Adler. The show has seen four successful seasons so far. Here’s everything we know about its next season.

Life In Pieces Cast: Who is in it?

Colin Hanks plays the role of Greg Short while Betsy Brandt essays the role of Heather Hughes. Thomas Sadoski plays the role of Matthew ‘Matt’ Short. Zoe Lister-Jones appears in the role of Jennifer ‘Jen’ Collins Short and John Bertram Short is played by James Brolin. Angelique Cabral appears as Colleen Brandon Ortega and Hunter King, the elder sister of Joey King of ‘The Conjuring‘ fame, appears in the role of Clementine Hughes. While this includes the main cast of the series, ‘Life in Pieces’ also has recurring stars which include notable names like Jordan Peele. Joey King joined the cast in fourth season, where she plays the role of a pregnant teen who wants to give her child up for adoption.

Life In Pieces Plot: What is it about?

‘Life in Pieces’ is all about the family members of three generations of the Short family. The format of the show ensures that each episode has four short stories about each of the generations. The family is closely depicted with all its bonding, strength and pitfalls. As we see each branch of the family, the episodes are centered around the day to day activities of what the Short family does in the Los Angeles County, including their interactions.

Breaking the stories up and narrating them through each of the family members is an excellent technique since we get a perspective into all the characters and often see the same situation through different eyes and thus colored by different perceptions. This makes instances of misunderstanding among the members even more comic. CBS describes ‘Life in Pieces’ as being about, “one big happy family and their sometimes awkward, often hilarious and ultimately beautiful milestone moments as told by its various members.

Of the three siblings, middle child Matt has finally married his true love, Colleen. The coddled youngest brother, Greg, and his wife, Jen, are struggling to find the balance between work and raising their toddler. The eldest, Heather, and her husband, Tim, have their hands full with three children. To make matters crazier, their oldest son and his wife are living on their property in a tiny house. Their parents are Joan, the family’s adoring matriarch who would do anything for her kids—as long as she agrees with it—and John, the gregarious patriarch who’s searching for ways to spend more time with his family. As the family’s lives unfold in four short stories each week, they try to savor these little pieces of time that flash by but stay with you forever, because these moments add up to what life’s all about.”

What is remarkable about the show is how the plot reflects the title ‘Life in Pieces’. As they say, life is not about the minutes, but the memories. These memories do not always have to be grand occasions and mostly creep up in our everyday lives. The comedy shows us exactly that as it revolves around the Short family, this big and happy, but awkward family. The Shorts try to cherish the beautiful milestone moments in their daily lives and we are told about this through the eyes of the different family members. Think of it as a window into the person’s mind where you can see what effects the character the most and the moments that they will cherish from that particular day. Each week, in a new episode, the family’s life is divvied up into four short stories.

The Shorts always try to savor all the little snippets and bits of time that seem to flash by but stay in the minds forever, since it is these moments that add meaning to life. There is truth in the fact that we are a sum of all our memories, and the Short family tries to actualize each day, making it memorable through their interactions with others and among themselves. However, if this gives you the idea that the show is more of a drama, then you have another thought coming. The episodes are interspersed with a good amount of humor that will have you laughing and you will soon find yourself falling in love with the adorable and occasionally awkward Short family.

Life In Pieces Season 5: Release Date: When will it premiere?

Life in Pieces Season 4 premiered on April 18, 2019. As far as the next season goes, we have bad news for the fans. On May 10, 2019, CBS announced the cancellation of the show. Considering the declining viewership of the show, it was expected that CBS may not continue for another season. Though, fans should not lose all their hopes. There’s still a possibility that some other network picks up the show. If that happens, we will update you about Life in Pieces Season 5 release date.

Life In Pieces Trailer:

While we wait for any positive news on Life in Pieces Season 5, check out the season 3 trailer to refresh your memories. If you haven’t seen the show yet, head over to CBS to catch all the episodes of the previous seasons.

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Dan Bakkedahl, Betsy Brandt (CBS) TV ReviewsAll of our TV reviews in one convenient place. PrevNextView All

By its fifth episode, “Babe Secret Phone Germs,” the Life In Pieces formula is well established—four mini-sitcoms in one, good comic actors lending individuality where they can, everything wrapped up in a brisk, forgettably pleasant 20 minutes. Initial thoughts that the show was going to use its short story structure (of a family, never forget, named Short) as a more thoughtful storytelling device—while certainly stoked by the novelty of the pilot—turn out to be a case of reviewers (like me) overestimating creator Justin Adler’s ambitions. Which wouldn’t be a problem if the show were using its four-in-one structure to hone sitcom formulas to diamond brilliance, or deconstruct sitcom premises, or even simply go for broke with inventive silliness. Instead, the show has revealed itself as a complacent would-be crowd pleaser with an overqualified cast. And, even under the weight of those diminished expectations, “Babe Secret Phone Germs” sags, thanks in equal measure to lazy writing and some unaccustomed ugliness that comes along with it.


The middle two stories tonight fall under the “cute and forgettable” tent. In one, Tim and Heather’s daughter Sophia (Giselle Eisenberg) manipulates her pop-pop John (James Brolin) into getting her a cellphone against her mom’s wishes. The overly precocious little kid lines aren’t Eisenberg’s fault, but the concept of a small child expertly delivering adult putdowns like “You guys lose your phones every time you go to a wine tasting,” and expertly manipulating grownups was already tired in the pilot. And Brolin—gamely doing the twinkly macho patriarch thing—is as good at playing flustered and secretly afraid to confront the women in his family as it is amiably dull to watch him do so.

Ken Marino, Angelique Cabral, Thomas Sadoski (CBS)

Similarly, Thomas Sadoski and Angelique Cabral bring what they can to their “we’re coworkers forbidden to date” office blackmail plot, as Matt and Colleen are caught smooching in the luxurious “forbidden executive lounge” by office sleazebag Ken Marino (bringing the grinning jerk energy he can do so well). Again, if Life In Pieces could find anything new to do with this threadbare conceit, I’d be all for it, but, apart from what the performers can squeeze into their brief running time, there’s not much there. (Sadoski and Cabral continue to give fine, sly banter, and Marino has a nice, sustained piece of butt-work with a picture frame on Cabral’s desk.) As with their wedding hall story from the second episode, Matt makes a goofy romantic gesture—publicly quitting and then planting a juicy kiss on Colleen before striding triumphantly out of the office—which makes the relationship feel genuine and fun (Sadoski and Cabral really do have chemistry).

Thomas Sadoski, Hunter King, Giselle Eisenberg, Niall Cunningham, Holly J. Bartlett, James Brolin (CBS) Advertisement

In the other two stories, though, Life In Pieces’ essential inconsequence gives way to unexamined creepiness, in two different ways. In the first, Tim and Heather’s teenage son Tyler (Niall Cunningham) brings home his first girlfriend, only for literally every gathered member of the Short family to turn into jibbering ninnies because she has fairly large breasts. The girl, Clementine (Hunter King) has no other function—she’s just the boobie girl. She doesn’t act provocatively (or, indeed, do much of anything at all)—she’s just a normal, slightly older, attractive teenage girl who turns all three generations of her new boyfriend’s family into babbling, leering, wisecracking weirdoes. Granted, the weirdoes are played by some very funny people—Dan Bakkedahl’s Tim becomes so self-aware of his inability to stop acting stupid around the girl that he eventually just hands Tyler a handful of money and flees—but the whole concept is so misconceived as to be sort of creepy. (If I were Clementine, I’d be out of there even before Betsy Brandt’s Heather concludes her welcoming toast with, “To boobs!”)

James Brolin, Thomas Sadoski, Colin Hanks, Niall Cunningham (CBS) Advertisement

The last story is creepy on a whole other level, as Colin Hanks’ Greg and Zoe Lister-Jones’ Jen call a pest control guy (second Party Down alum of the evening Martin Starr) to take care of the skunk that’s been freaking Greg out, and then spend the rest of the episode treating the good-natured (if undeniably gross) workman like garbage because he has the nerve to ask if he can use their bathroom. Like the Clementine story, this is supposed to be another breezy example of how eccentric and quirky and goofy the Short family is, but, in practice, its unexamined privilege and self-absorption makes them come of like jerks. Starr (nearly unrecognizable under scruffy beard, exaggerated country accent and novelty teeth) may be playing a buffoon who licks the catfood skunk-bait off his thumb and tracks muddy footprints on the floor of the couple’s pristine home, but he’s also friendly, helpful, and, you know, someone they hired to do the unpleasant job Greg and Jen are too quirky and wealthy and ineffectual to do.

When Jen (who also comes off as a scold in the Clementine story) sneers at the fact that Starr’s exterminator mistakenly calls her baby “he” (after he’s glimpsed the infant for exactly two seconds), it’s supposed to get us on the couples’ side—this hick doesn’t even know what sex their baby is! Instead, it’s an example of the show miscalculating audience empathy. Throw in the fact that, once Starr leaves, they frantically scrub their house with extra strength cleaning products, of which Jen states, “I bought it at the Mexican market—there are no rules there,” and the show’s comfortable biases become even clearer. Hanks and Lister-Jones have had to do most of the show’s physical comedy heavy lifting so far, and they’re good at it (opening this segment, Hanks does some great fly-swatting contortions that’d make The Money Pit-era Tom Hanks proud), but once the couple starts mugging to us about how yucky their hired help is, Life In Pieces’ easily digestible comic recipe goes sour.


Stray observations

  • Starr’s workman has some great, strange lines, telling Greg and Jen that he has nine kids, “all boys and girls,” helpfully clarifying that “john” means “terlet,” and telling Greg admiringly that Jen “smells like Japanese candy, you know, the kind with the tic-tac-toe game on it.” He’s written to be grubby, but he’s not a bad guy.
  • I cannot over-stress how offputting the Shorts’ collective reaction to Clementine is. Jen takes one look and says, “Yeah, I’m not standing next to that,” and then forbids her husband from even talking to the 18-year-old girlfriend of his nephew. Tyler’s uncles and grandfather all group hug him once they find out the girl is over the age of consent. Even the little girl makes cracks about the poor girl’s chest. It’s supposed to be, again, endearingly loopy, I guess? (I kept expecting a cartoon “booooinggg” sound effect whenever the camera cut to her.)
  • Joan (Dianne Wiest)‘s advice on parenting: “You let the first two go and you baby the third one until you die.”
  • There’s another body type joke in passing later, as Matt lies that he’s actually got a crush on an overweight coworker instead of Colleen, which is supposed to be funny. Because fat people.


  • Life in Pieces season 4 is set to premiere on CBS on Thursday, April 18.
  • On the night of its return, the hit sitcom will air two new episodes.
  • Fans can expect to see some new characters and surprising storylines this season.

Longtime fans of popular CBS sitcom Life in Pieces know that the show — and, with it, the Short family — usually makes its annual season premiere sometime between September and November. So, when fall 2018 came and went without any word of a season 4 air date, many were left wondering: Is Life in Pieces cancelled?!

The good news: Life in Pieces was, in fact, renewed for a fourth season, and it will make its highly anticipated return to weeknight TV very soon. In the meantime, here’s everything we know about season 4 so far.

Life in Pieces season 4 will return April 18 with TWO new episodes.

Not only is Life in Pieces not cancelled, but fans will also be in for an extra treat on the night of the show’s return: On Thursday, April 18, CBS will premiere not one but two new episodes of the sitcom, with the first one (titled “Jungle Push Resort Anniversary”) airing at 8:30/7:30 p.m. CT and the second (titled “Demo Nosebreath Surgery Match”) airing at 9:30/8:30 p.m. CT.

The following week, the sitcom will return to its regular 9:30 p.m. time slot.

The Life in Pieces cast is growing by at least one.

Che RosalesGetty Images

Expect to see all of your favorites — Dianne Wiest, James Brolin, Colin Hanks, Zoe Lister-Jones, and the rest of the Short family — return this season. But you’ll also want to keep your eyes peeled for a new recurring character. Back in August, TVLine reported that actress Joey King would join the show as Morgan, a “pregnant 17-year-old who plans to place her baby with adoptive parents” Matt and Colleen (who are played by Thomas Sadoski and Angelique Cabral).

Fun behind-the-scenes fact: Joey is the real-life sister of Hunter King, who has played Tyler’s girlfriend Clementine since she was introduced during season 1 of the show.

The first two episodes will jump right in to the silly and the serious.

According to episode synopses available on TV Guide, the first episode of season 4 will follow the Short family’s vacation in the Yucatan, then the second episode dives deeper into Matt and Colleen’s adoption journey and Greg and Jen’s pregnancy. Read: Things are going to get super real for the Short family super fast.

CBS Photo ArchiveGetty Images

And the Short family might face some rough patches.

Not much else has been revealed about the plot of Life in Pieces season 4 just yet, but a cryptic teaser from CBS suggests that it might not be all silly shenanigans for the Shorts: “This time around, they’ll be welcoming a few new family members, weathering an unexpected health crisis, and revealing some long-hidden secrets in an unexpected way,” an official CBS blog post reads. As for what that really means for Heather, Matt, Greg, and their families … only time will tell!

If You Like ‘Life in Pieces’ … Heather Finn Content Strategy Editor Heather Finn is the content strategy editor at Good Housekeeping, where she heads up the brand’s social media strategy and covers entertainment news on everything from ABC’s ‘The Good Doctor’ to Netflix’s latest true crime documentaries.