Memphis Beat: We Hardly Knew Ye, Really.

Memphis Beat starring Jason LeeAccording to Deadline, “off-beat” (see what they did there?) cop drama Memphis Beat is being canceled after its second season.  Huh?  We felt like we never heard about this show, but here’s what TNT says about it:

Memphis Beat centers on Dwight Hendricks (Jason Lee), a quirky Memphis police detective with an intimate connection to the city, a passion for blues music and a close relationship with his mother. He is “the keeper of Memphis,” a Southern gentleman who is protective of his fellow citizens, reverential of the city’s history and deeply rooted in its blues music scene. . .

[It] was created by Liz W. Garcia (Cold Case) and Joshua Harto (The Dark Knight), who also wrote the first two episodes. Harto, who grew up in the South and has spent a lot of time with his country-musician grandfather, sees the show’s setting as a chance to spotlight one of America’s great cities. “Memphis has been largely forgotten in film and TV today,” he says. “It’s where the blues and Johnny Cash and Elvis came from. It’s where Martin Luther King was assassinated and where Isaac Hayes and Aretha Franklin were born and raised. It’s the perfect blend of drama and humor for our show.”

In addition to the Memphis blues soundtrack, legendary Keb’ Mo’ wrote original music for the series, too.  Sounds like it coulda been kinda good, right?  Maybe?  Did you watch this one, and if so, what did you think?  Is it a gem that slipped through the cracks?

(Meanwhile, the news blurb also says that Franklin & Bash, which we thought was already canceled, was just renewed.)  It’s a fast, fast world where things you never heard of are already gone after already having been around long enough to be old news.


  1. Susan Policoff

    It was a good show verging on very good. The actors were all great, the music was wonderful. It had a lot of heart. I wish they hadn’t cancelled it.

  2. Ron Hogan

    I was also a fan. Great cast, and the writers gave it just the right amount of overarching continuity — enough to reward regular viewers, but not so much that you couldn’t walk into just about any episode cold.

    Apart from the B-roll footage, it turns out most of the show was actually filmed in New Orleans, which made the episode where Dwight and his mama did go to New Orleans funny in retrospect.

  3. Percy Parker

    Hate to see the show go. It was one of my favorites.

  4. Saundra Peck

    I LOVED this show… a side of Jason Lee I never expected and loved each episode… I never have gotten into Franklin and Bash, so it just figures!!!

  5. Terrie Farley Moran

    Absolutely a favorite of mine and for all the reasons cited by the fans who’ve already posted here. So sorry we didn’t do a big Memphis Beat blog and attract lots of fans to keep the show running for a few more seasons. Opportunity lost. ;(

  6. Clare 2e

    Between here, Twitter, and Facebook, there are A LOT of people piping up to say how they really liked this show. Maybe the network made a mistake. I don’t know how I missed it until now. Some others of us at HQ saw ads, but never an episode. Our loss.

  7. Manda Collins

    I really enjoyed the first season, but this past season just didn’t hold my attention as well. I think because they focused more on Dwight’s singing, which was so painfully, obviously dubbed that I cringed through every musical number.

    There were so many great character actors on the show, though. And I thought Jason Lee was great (aside from the singing). It was a decent show and I’m bummed to see it go.

    Franklin & Bash, however, I really love. Not mystery at all really, but it appeals to the GenX-er in my something fierce to see Zach Morris and the stoner kid from Clueless on the same show.

  8. Yolanda Washingtin

    I am very disappointed, but not surprised that they cancelled this really good show. I’ve been a fan since day one. As usual, TNT messed up. Not at all a fan of Franklin and Bash, so I’m surprised that didn’t get canned.

  9. Mary Saputo

    I, too, enjoyed this show but just realized with this article that I haven’t seen it lately. My cable is set to tape it and it hasn’t. Perhaps that’s a mark of why it hasn’t been renewed. Included in this article was a mention of Franklin & Bash. It’s going to be renewed? There is absolutely no justice in the world. This is a silly, stupid show. Too bad the network didn’t stick with their first decision.

  10. Louise321

    Have been a fan. I always like funky offbeat shows with every-day looking characters with twitches in their get-alongs. This one was just starting to become a must see and I’m sorry Franklin and Bash was chosen for renewal cuz what the world needs now is not more drunken carousing sleazeball lawyers.

  11. earlsgirl40

    I loved this show, am a big fan of Jason Lee. In this TV world of warmed over old shows, this was original and fun. I thought the cast was great.

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