After a big promotional push to build buzz for the October 11, 2022 premiere of its new series, “The Renovator” starring business expert Marcus Lemonis, HGTV has pulled the show from its schedule without explanation after airing just two episodes. Here’s what you need to know…
Host Marcus Lemonis Now Says First Episodes of ‘The Renovator’ Were a ‘Sneak Peek’
Lemonis has found fame and fortune as a successful entrepreneur while also serving as CEO of Camping World and starring for a decade on CNBC’s “The Profit.” He has been excited about launching his new HGTV show because it’s given him a chance to highlight some of his lesser-known passions, including home design, personal finance, and interpersonal communication skills.
In the weeks leading up to its premiere, “The Renovator” was promoted by Lemonis and HGTV as a new eight-episode series to air on Tuesday nights at 8 pm Eastern/7 pm Central. The first two episodes aired as scheduled on October 11 and October 18.
But on October 21, Lemonis posted on social media that the series would return in 2023. He uploaded the 90-second “sneak peek” promo of the show that had aired during some shows on the network and was provided to select media before the series premiered.
Lemonis wrote, “We hope you enjoyed the Sneak Peek of #TheRenovatorHGTV… catch the first two sneak peek episodes on @discoveryplus and on demand @hgtv …see you early 2023 … We can’t wait for you to meet more families..enjoy the fall and holidays”
His wife of four years, fashion executive Bonnie Lemonis, who played an integral role behind the scenes helping to pick out furniture and decor with her husband, commented on Instagram, “We killed it hon !”
While many followers commented on Lemonis’ posts to say how much they enjoyed the first two episodes, others expressed confusion and frustration about the season coming to an abrupt halt.
On Twitter, one viewer responded, “Wait … What is this about? This was just a teaser? I have to wait til 2023 sometime for a full season or even just a new episode of #TheRenovatorHGTV???? Why am I just now learning this??? How long is the wait?”
Another wrote, “very bummed that we have to wait until 2023 to see more episodes!”
“We did enjoy the first 2 episodes, but we want to see more NOW,” one man commented. “Cmon Marcus, make it happen. We love this new show.”
Lemonis simply replied, “Everyone loves a peek.”
Instead of airing the third episode of “The Renovator” on October 25, which had been scheduled to lead into a new episode from season 7 of “Good Bones,” HGTV replaced the show with a “Good Bones” re-run.
Ratings for ‘The Renovator’ Decreased After Premiere Episode
Lemonis did a great deal of promotion to build interest in the launch of “The Renovator,” from sending gift boxes to HGTV hosts, some of whom shared shirts and goodies they got via social media, to conducting interviews with a wide variety of media. HGTV aired a 90-second “sneak peek” of the first episode and issued press materials announcing the new eight-episode series would debut on October 11.
Lemonis told Reality Blurred in early October that he pitched the idea for “The Renovator” to HGTV in early 2020, hoping to film a renovation show in which he would not only improve a family’s house but also improve their financial and interpersonal issues. Though network executives said it would be “very different” for HGTV, they announced in June 2021 that they had greenlighted the show to debut in 2022.
Lemonis told Reality Blurred that the episodes would grow “saltier” throughout the season.
He said, “We’re going to deal with a husband and a daughter who had death in their family and couldn’t move on. We’re going to deal with a spouse hiding $200,000 of cryptocurrency from their other spouse that comes out. We’re going to deal with mold and sickness the family didn’t know it, and the guy almost died. So the episodes are going to get a little saltier.”
Despite the heavy promotion, the premiere episode did not draw in as many viewers as HGTV’s most popular shows. According to USTVDB, the first episode drew 607,000 total viewers, but ratings went down the following week to 570,000, making it the least-watched new show on the network for the week of October 17, 2022. By contrast, the network’s most popular show of the week, the “Farmhouse Fixer” season finale, had 1,289,000 viewers.
At the time of publication, HGTV nor Lemonis had responded to Heavy’s request for comment about the status of “The Renovator.”