CNN limited series ‘King Charles’ ending

CNN has announced that its Charles BarkleyGayle King helmed show is ending as planned without any further episodes planned.

The weekly “King Charles” talk show, which aired on select Wednesday evenings, aired its final episode in April 2024.

CNN’s decision is hardly surprising; the show’s premiere episode attracted just 501,000 viewers, making it the smallest audience of any primetime debut of 2024 on the network.

“King Charles” sometimes outperformed the show that normally airs in its 10 p.m. eastern timeslot, “CNN NewsNight,” but ratings never were impressive, mirroring an overall ratings slump at the network. 

CNN notably labeled the show as a “limited series” when it was announced, with an expected end date of spring 2024, which appears to be in line with what’s happening.

That said, if the show had performed better, CNN may have opted to move forward with more episodes.

CNN has pointed out that the show did perform strongly in some demographics, including younger and more diverse audiences, which can often be coveted by advertisers. 

“King Charles” was first envisioned by now-former CEO Chris Licht, who left in June 2023 after a short tenure.

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In some ways, CNN appeared to be targeting a different type of viewer for its 10 p.m. timeslot, formatting the show more like a late-night talk show, which could have been meant to mirror what Fox’s conservative cable channel did by launching “Gutfeld!” 

While each show has unique characteristics, both are formatted to be more conversational and less formal that a traditional newscast. 

Meanwhile, Barkley is still expected to remain on TNT’s “Inside the NBA,” which is produced by Warner Bros. Discovery’s sports division but covered under a separate deal with the former NBAer. CNN is also owned by WBD.

King, also known as Oprah Winfrey’s best friend, will also continue to serve as co-anchor of “CBS Mornings” on CBS. She signed a separate agreement with CNN to host “King Charles.”

CNN will shift back to producing five episodes of “NewsNight” per week to fill the small gap in its schedule.