8 Ways Test Audiences Changed TV Shows

These TV shows very nearly looked completely different before test audiences saved the day.

The Big Bang Theory

As you've probably already spotted if you've had the pleasure of clicking on various other articles available on this glorious website, it's not uncommon for a big screen feature to go through a certain amount of changes on the back of being initially screened in front of a test audience.

These focus groups have seen everything from abs being digitally altered, to whole endings being completely chopped and changed over the years. But it's not just movie madness that can be swiftly shifted in the wake of some negative responses from a few chosen test subjects.

As you'll discover over the course of this list, the very fabric of some of your favourite TV series was thoroughly switched up or replaced thanks to a few folks colouring in the "hated it" circle on the feedback sheet. After all, when's there's money on the line, you better believe your voice matters, folks.

From those in attendance not wanting to say goodbye to their favourite character so soon, to seemingly crap jokes unexpectedly going down a treat later down the line, these test audiences had much more of an impact than you likely ever knew.

8. Audiences Didn't Want To See Boyd Crowder Bite The Dust - Justified

The Big Bang Theory

As his storied career on the big and small screen has taught us time and time again, you can never have too much Walton Goggins in your life.

And the focus group chosen to initially test FX's Western crime drama Justified clearly felt that very same way as their response to the star of the likes of The Hateful Eight and Ant Man and The Wasp made a huge impact on Goggins' role within the series.

Had it not been for those select few in attendance, the producers of the show would've kept as faithful to the short story, written by Elmore Leonard, as possible when it came to adapting the tale into a series. But this would've also meant killing off the mesmerising Boyd Crowder.

With audiences feeling he was one of the best parts of the show, the ending which would've seen him killed off by Raylan was promptly reshot and Goggins would later go on to pick up an Emmy nomination for his frequently compelling work as the white supremasist-turned-born-again-Christian.


Lifts rubber and metal. Watches people flip in spandex and pretends to be other individuals from time to time...