The Axe Falls: ABC Chops 666 Park Avenue From Lineup

666parkavenue The Axe Falls: ABC Chops <em>666 Park Avenue</em> From Lineup

The show was nowhere near as racy and edgy as the posters might lead a person to believe.

It looks like 666 Park Avenue learned the hard way that the only thing harder to find than a sprawling rent-controlled apartment was renewal for another 13 episodes.

The supernatural evening soap opera, which was shameless when it came to the inaccurate portrayal of  Manhattan real estate, has been evicted from ABC’s Sunday night lineup for a lackluster performance, according to Variety.

There’s nothing scarier than failing to attract viewers.

Did viewers simply become fed up with having to pretend the Ansonia was on the Upper East Side? Were they angry that we never got to see that dramatic spiral stair featured so prominently in the ads (a spiral staircase that the real Ansonia actually has)?

Did they, like us, spend their time thinking that whatever miseries were visited upon poor Jane they couldn’t possibly be that bad. After all, she had a free Park Avenue apartment. We would watch her shiver and beg to leave and we’d feel nothing so much as disgust. Let her try a dingy studio in Washington Heights that costs half her income.

No, probably the cancellation had more to do with the erratic plot, the wooden acting, the lack of any sympathetic characters and for those who care about these kinds of things, the incoherence of the “evil” plaguing the building. Even The Shining’s Overlook Hotel, whose bag of tricks was all over the place, made more sense than the Drake’s evil. Maybe part of the problem was that the show spent half its time having the evil owners play fairy godparents to the two leads. Fancy dinners, diamond rings, designer dresses, job opportunities, all on top of that mouth-watering apartment.

Moreover, Jane and Henry were dull as dirt, their characters undeveloped. All they talked about was what a great opportunity for Henry this all was, how much the evil landlords had done for them, how much they loved one another and whether or not they should move back to Ohio. Jane, despite poking into all the odd corners of the building for us, was oddly complacent and complaint.

But now we’re betraying the fact that we’ve actually been watching. It was kind of addictive. For those wondering what will become of the evil box or Jane’s family secrets, ABC will screen the remainder of the first 13-episode order.

kvelsey@observer.com