'Keeping Up with the Kardashians' Will End After 20 Seasons

One of the longest running reality television shows is about to end its run. Why did they cancel 'Keeping Up with the Kardashians'?

Devan McGuinness - Author

Feb. 22 2021, Updated 4:27 p.m. ET

KUWTK Season 1
Source: E! Network

There are some reality television shows that seem to come and go almost as fast as the season aired, and then there are a few that seem to go on forever. Those long-standing ones are far and few between, but there's one show that's lasted far longer than anyone thought. So, why did they cancel Keeping Up with the Kardashians?

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'Keeping Up with the Kardashians' has been on air since 2007.

The television show, which airs on E!, made the Kardashian / Jenner clan household names. First airing in 2007, the show featured Kris, Caitlyn, Kendall, and Kylie Jenner alongside Kourtney, Kim, Khloe, and Rob Kardashian. Over time, others became main characters on the show including significant others like Scott Disick and Kanye West, as well as the family's best friends.

There's no doubt the show has been a huge success. While some people whine and complain, not understanding why the family is famous for just doing what they do, fans spoke by the millions in terms of views. It was one of the most successful shows on E! Network, but it's clear there have been some shifts in its popularity, particularly ahead of the show's 18th season. 

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Earlier in 2020, people speculated that the show may be nearing its end after the network announced the show would move from its Sunday timeslot to Thursdays, the first time in the show's history. Around the same time, some outlets began to share that the show was dropping in views. 

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"The first couple of episodes scored just about 1 million viewers, down from the 1.4 million KUWTK had fallen to in recent seasons," ShowBiz reported. From there, each episode continued to drop. The drama on the show started to feel forced, and the family didn't seem to be too into it anymore. 

In a Reddit thread, people questioned the drama on the show and the move to Thursday nights as a last-ditch effort to keep viewers. The critics were curious if the show had moved from Sundays so it no longer had to compete with other reality TV shows, like TLC's 90 Day Fiancé, which has grown significantly in popularity.

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Why did they cancel 'Keeping Up with the Kardashians'?

On Sept. 8, 2020, several members of the Kardashian-Jenner family announced on social media that the show was going to end after Season 20. 

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"To our amazing fans," Kim Kardashian West wrote on Instagram. "It is with heavy hearts that we’ve made the difficult decision as a family to say goodbye to Keeping Up with the Kardashians. After what will be 14 years, 20 seasons, hundreds of episodes and numerous spin-off shows, we are beyond grateful to all of you who’ve watched us for all of these years – through the good times, the bad times, the happiness, the tears, and the many relationships and children." 

She went on to say that she will "cherish the wonderful memories" and gave thanks to the people and businesses that were involved in the show. 

"Our last season will air early next year in 2021," she said. 

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There's been much speculation as to why the show has come to an end. For one thing, Kourtney had already made it clear that she quit the show, calling it a "toxic environment" and saying that she'd come to value her privacy a lot more.

Some also claimed that Kanye's recent presidential run and its residual fallout may have added to the decision to end the show. 

Season 19 of Keeping Up with the Kardashians is set to begin airing Sept. 17, 2020. 

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