The Good Doctor Ending: Why ABC Cancelled The Medical Drama

ABC’s beloved medical drama, “The Good Doctor,” starring Freddie Highmore as the talented and autistic surgeon Dr. Shaun Murphy, is set to conclude with its upcoming seventh season, premiering on February 20, 2024. This announcement has left many fans wondering why the network has decided to bring the series to a close, especially when it has consistently been a source of compelling storytelling and has fostered important discussions on diversity and representation in the medical field.

Since its debut in 2017, “The Good Doctor” has captivated audiences with its heartwarming narratives, complex characters, and innovative portrayal of autism in the workplace. Dr. Shaun Murphy’s journey from a newly appointed surgical resident facing skepticism due to his condition to a respected surgeon at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital has been both inspirational and groundbreaking. So, why end a show that has achieved so much and touched the hearts of so many?

Financial Considerations and Ownership

One of the primary reasons behind the decision appears to be financial. Shows that run for as long as “The Good Doctor” tend to become more expensive over time, mainly due to increasing production costs and cast salaries. Unlike some of ABC’s other hit shows, “The Good Doctor” is not fully owned by the network internally. This distinction means that ABC does not profit from the show solely in the way it does from shows owned by its internal studios. The economics of continuing a show under such circumstances undoubtedly play a significant role in determining its fate.

Creative Closure

Another, perhaps lesser, aspect to consider is the show’s narrative arc. Over six seasons, “The Good Doctor” has explored numerous storylines, character developments, and ethical dilemmas faced by medical professionals. Concluding the show while it is still at the peak of its storytelling ensures that it ends on a high note, preserving its legacy as a pioneering series that challenged stereotypes and offered a fresh perspective on the medical drama genre.

The Changing Landscape of Television

The television landscape is continually evolving, with networks often needing to make strategic decisions about their programming to adapt to new trends and audience preferences. As streaming services and digital platforms become increasingly dominant, traditional networks like ABC must carefully consider which shows to continue and which to conclude to maintain their competitive edge.

Reaction From Cast & Crew

Freddie Highmore, portraying Dr. Shaun Murphy, expressed immense gratitude for the role, describing it as a privilege and a profoundly rewarding experience:

“Playing Dr. Shaun Murphy has been an immense privilege and one of the most remarkable and rewarding experiences of my life. I will always be grateful to David, Liz, and Erin as well as the hugely talented — and lovely — cast, writers, and crew who made this show possible. Caring deeply is what got us here. Thank you to Sony and ABC, and to everyone who has watched along at home. With love from Vancouver… tequila, stat!”

Showrunners David Shore and Liz Friedman stated the decision to conclude “The Good Doctor” was difficult but felt it was the right time to say goodbye:

“‘The Good Doctor’ has been a once in a lifetime opportunity, but it’s time to say goodbye. We are incredibly proud of the work we’ve done and the message we’ve been privileged to be a part of. We look forward to giving our fantastic fans, the truly extraordinary Freddie Highmore, the rest of our talented actors (and friends), and the best crew in the business the series ending that you all deserve. Thank you, Sony; thank you, ABC; thank you all.”


While the news of “The Good Doctor” ending may be disappointing to its dedicated fanbase, it’s essential to recognize the impact the show has had on promoting diversity and understanding of autism. The series’ conclusion offers an opportunity to celebrate its achievements and the ways it has enriched the television landscape. As we await the final season, fans can look forward to a fitting conclusion to Dr. Shaun Murphy’s story, one that honors the character’s growth and the show’s legacy.

Will you miss The Good Doctor? Did ABC cancel it too soon?

Fan of other ABC series? Track the cancel/renew status of other ABC shows.

3 thoughts on “The Good Doctor Ending: Why ABC Cancelled The Medical Drama”

  1. Yes, I will miss The Good Doctor.I feel it, was cancelled way to soon.As a matter of fact, it should not have been cancelled period. It was one of the few shows, that are on today, that was worth watching. ABC made a very poor decision, when they cancelled, this show. The cast that were on the show, were excellent.

  2. There is not enough shows with people with disabilities which I find very disheartening I really feel like it should’ve been given one more to see how Sean grow up to be a good dad

  3. It’s too bad ABC decided not to go ahead with the spin-off “The Good Lawyer” so that the cast from Good Doctor could have opportunities for cameos.


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