Last week, Toonami fans were hit with a bombshell when Adult Swim announced cuts to the block’s schedule. Effective immediately, Toonami would lose an hour of programming. After what seemed like months of good news for the block, it seemed like a kick in the gut for the devoted fans.
The new schedule will run from midnight to 3:30AM, down from the 11:30PM – 5:00AM that the block was originally slated to be reduced to. As a result, Attack on Titan, Cowboy Bebop, Ghost in the Shell, and Space Dandy will be cut with no promises of returning.
Toonami cited low ratings in the later hours as the primary reason for the cuts, and promised that they would continue to add new shows for the foreseeable future.
The new schedule is as follows:
- 12:00 AM: Dragon Ball Z Kai
- 12:30 AM: Kill la Kill
- 1:00 AM: Naruto Shippūden
- 1:30 AM: InuYasha: The Final Act
- 2:00 AM: Gurren Lagann
- 2:30 AM: One Piece
- 3:00 AM: Deadman Wonderland
For Toonami fans, this is sure to be a painful moment. As we reported earlier, Toonami saw a ratings collapse after posting record-highs in June 2014. Adult Swim has made no attempts to hide that this is the driver of the changes.
At the moment, Adult Swim is scrambling. The ratings drop means that the slot has less value to advertisers. In a practical sense, this means that the amount the network can command for the block drops. And, with that, profits drop as a direct result.
Really, there’s little more that one can say aside from a simple admission that this is unfortunate. Hopefully, this leaner and smaller version of Toonami will perform to expectations. After the long fight that fans gave to finally see it return to the air, it would be a shame to see it die by a million cuts at this point.
Toonami was able to claw success from a truly anemic launch in 2012, to become a darling of fans and general viewers alike. Hopefully, it can find that special something and find a way to thrive once again.