LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- ABC is pulling the plug on its freshman drama "Life on Mars" after 17 episodes.
The series nevertheless will continue to air on Wednesdays at 10:00/9:00c through its finale on April 1. The network had previously announced "The Unusuals" will assume the slot on April 8.
A modest 5.5 million viewers tuned into the show's most recent broadcast, including a 2.0 rating among adults 18-49 - tying its worst numbers to date. "Mars" opened to a 3.8 rating in the key demographic on October 9.
Said downturn came despite a consistent lead-in in "Lost" - which matched its season premiere numbers (5.1 rating) on February 18.
Josh Applebaum, Andre Nemec and Scott Rosenberg - along with Jane Featherstone and Stephen Garrett of Kudos Productions - were the executive producers of the series.
Despite the cancellation, the trio are already at work on a new project for the Alphabet - the two-hour drama pilot "Happy Town," about the inhabitants of Haplin, Minnesota, who had enjoyed a seven-year peace after a series of kidnappings until it is hit by another crime.
Amy Acker, Dean Winters, Geoff Stults, Jay Paulson, John Patrick Amedori, Lauren German and Robert Wisdom are among its co-stars. Gary Fleder, who helmed the pilot to "Mars," is on board to direct.