How We Roll is a recently canceled CBS sitcom. CBS has had some incredibly popular sitcoms. From How I Met Your Mother to Big Bang Theory, CBS is no stranger to hit shows. While they have had these highly-rated shows they have also had several shows canceled after one season.
In addition to How We Roll, there have been several other quickly canceled comedies. My Big Fat Greek Life (a show continuing the plot of the popular movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding) and $#*! My Dad Says (based on the Twitter feed of the same name) are two of the many others. But why was How We Roll canceled? And what was the journey from production to cancelation like?
How We Roll Production
Believe it or not, the show How We Roll was actually based on a true story. It follows the life story of the real person, Thomas Smallwood. In fact, the original title for the show was The Tom Smallwood Project (It was then changed to Smallwood before landing on the final and official title, How We Roll). Tom Smallwood is a real-life professional bowling champion who has been playing for over 20 years.
In March of 2021, the pilot for this show (under the name The Tom Smallwood Project) was greenlit. This pilot episode was written by Mark Gross. Later in May of 2021, the show was greenlit for its first season under the name Smallwood. Mark Cendrowski would be directing the pilot episode. It was decided that this show would premiere in a mid-season timeslot in the 2021-2022 television season.
Late November in 2021, it was announced that the official title of the show would be How We Roll. The first season was set to have 11 episodes total. The show would be filmed in Los Angeles.
Pete Holmes was cast in March of 2021 as the lead character for the pilot episode. Chi McBride and Katie Lowes joined the cast in April of 2021. In November 2021, Julie White also hopped on board for the show. Finally, in December of 2021, Mason Wells was also cast in a role, solidifying the main cast.
Characters in How We Roll
The main cast of How We Roll consists of five main characters. The main cast is full of hilarious and talented actors. The lead character is Tom Smallwood. He is played by comedian and actor, Pete Holmes. He is a father and professional bowler. Katie Lowes plays the character Jen Smallwood. This is Tom’s wife. She also works as a professional hairstylist. Mason Wells is the actor who plays Sam Smallwood. This is Jen and Tom Smallwood’s son. The family is completed by Julie White playing Helen Smallwood. She is Tom’s mother and Jen’s mother-in-law.
The main cast is rounded out by Chi McBride. Chi plays the character Archie Betts. Archie Betts owns the bowling alley, Archie’s Lanes. He is also a friend and mentor to Tom. There are also several recurring characters in this sitcom. These characters are employees or customers at the bowling alley and hair salon.
The plot of this CBS show is honestly really interesting. Tom Smallwood is a man in his mid-thirties living in the midwest. He is a husband and a father. Unfortunately, he loses his job at the auto plant. Instead of trying to find another similar job he decides to pursue a career in bowling. He has always dreamed of becoming a professional bowler.
This career path is not always easy for Tom and his family. His wife has to take on extra hours as a hair stylist to make ends meet. With the support of his family and friends, however, Tom Smallwood is able to make this work.
Why Was How We Roll Canceled
After only 11 episodes How We Roll was officially canceled by CBS. This decision ultimately came down to the extremely low ratings of the show. This television season, CBS aired seven sitcoms. Unfortunately, in every category of judging these sitcoms, How We Roll ranked last. Many viewers felt that the show improved with every episode as writers and actors got more comfortable, but it would not prove to be enough.
Some also blame the spring release for this show’s failure. It is inherently more difficult to gain traction for a show that has a mid-season release. People are not really looking for new shows airing in the spring.
CBS may have canceled How We Roll, but this sitcom is still really interesting to look into. The fact that it was based on a true story is really cool. We are so used to movies being based on true stories, but it is less common in TV shows.
This also makes the characters in this show so much more interesting. In most sitcoms, it is easy to think “no one would actually do that” when they get into zany situations. But in this show’s case, they did! How We Roll is a very wholesome show. While it may have been canceled it can still be found on CBS’s website.
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