Pan Am Not Cancelled (Yet)

Is ABC’s Pan Am dead or alive? Multiple sources have reported that the 60s set series about stewardesses has been dumped by the network. SpoilerTV was the first to go with the headline “Pan Am Officially Cancelled.”

However, SpoilerTV based their article on a vague tweet by Pan Am star Carine Vanasse:

“Well we received THE call #PanAm is only coming back for one episode after Christmas. But up to the end we will give it our all.”

What Vanasse meant by “one episode” is unclear. Was she referring to filming one more episode after Christmas? Or did she mean only airing one more episode after Christmas? SpoilerTV’s article merely quotes the Tweet and does not follow up with anything from the network.

Thankfully, Jace Lacob of The Daily Beast did contact ABC for a clarification and tweeted that the series has not been cancelled and was still, according to ABC, very much in contention for renewal. New York Newsday critic Verne J. Gay followed up with a slightly stronger denial from the network:

Pan Am Not-repeat, NOT axed. Apparently some miscom (miscommunication) by a departing actor. One episode left this year; back in January.” followed up with a press release from ABC stating:

Pan-Am will wrap production on its first season in January after the completion of its 14th episode. A decision about a second season will be made in May.”

That said, a cancellation of the Christina Ricci led series would not be all that surprising. Pan Am launched to strong but not spectacular ratings in September, more than 11 million viewers but has since slumped to just over 7.5 million viewers throughout October and into the all-important November Sweeps period.

The series was a mostly middling take on the conventions of the 1960s and the attractiveness of stewardesses. Asides about espionage and the sudden disappearance of one stewardess gave the series a soapy quality very similar to the quickly cancelled nostalgia-fest The Playboy Club though the comparison the series creators would have greatly preferred was Mad Men.

TVLine notes that earlier this month ABC announced that the hour long comedy Good Christian Belles, starring Leslie Bibb and Kristin Chenoweth, would take over the Pan Am timeslot, Sundays at 10 p.m., beginning in March.