WASHINGTON — A ground-breaking reality TV show about Arab Americans is being canceled after one season in the face of flagging ratings, cast members and the cable channel behind the program said Wednesday.
TLC’s “All-American Muslim,” the first series of its kind on US television, followed the lives of five families of Lebanese heritage in a middle-class Detroit suburb — stirring some controversy along the way.
“It was not renewed for a second season,” a spokeswoman for TLC, owned by Discovery Communications, told AFP by email, as cast members blamed the cancelation on a slump in viewership.
“We are well aware that, at the end of the day, it’s a business decision for any network,” Suehaila Amen, a judicial executive and event planner who appeared on the show with her sisters, told the Detroit Free Press newspaper.
“All-American Muslim” enjoyed mostly favorable reviews from TV critics, and pulled about one million viewers when the first of its eight weekly episodes aired in November, two months after the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
It weathered a furor when Lowe’s, a national chain of home improvement stores, withdrew its advertising in the face of an email campaign waged against sponsors by an obscure Christian outfit in Florida.
“All-American Muslim” went on to tackle the September 11, 2001 attacks in its penultimate episode, with its participants seething anger at Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda for upending their lives.