Gamble was replaced by Judd Pillot and John Peaslee, who had performed the same role in the final season of Spade's sitcom, Just Shoot Me! The Friday night "death slot" ratings took their toll on 8 Simple Rules.
The third season finale was not aired for May sweeps.
After Ritter's death, it had slipped to 50th, but was renewed for a third season, in which ABC moved the series to Friday at pm as part of its TGIF comedy line-up.
The series' creator and showrunner, Tracy Gamble, left the series for a time over creative differences prior to the third season, but he later returned as a consulting producer midway through the third season. Even before the third-season finale's airing, rumors began circulating that 8 Simple Rules was facing cancellation due to Ritter's death and poor ratings.
He said he was inspired to create a twist on the usual type of dad post after talking to a “grown ass man who was He later explained that the reason he wants his daughters to be empowered is because of his upbringing.The series was aired uncut on subsequent channels following its cancellation by Disney Channel.Both Channel 5 and 5* aired the series in its originally-produced widescreen format.After three seasons, ABC cancelled 8 Simple Rules in May 2005 due to low ratings.The third season (after Ritter's death) took a creative turn, revolving more around cousin C. (David Spade) and grandfather Jim (James Garner), than the immediate Hennessy family, more specifically not revolving around the raising of the Hennessy girls.