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American Pickers' Ratings Dropped A Staggering Amount And It Isn't A Secret Why

"American Pickers" has finally returned from its brief Labor Day hiatus, which means fans of the History program can dig back into the action of its current season. After years in the field, antiquer Mike Wolfe knows how to get the best bargain for what he wants. Over the course of over 20 seasons, he's been able to turn a neat profit on the finds he's managed to score from various collectors. It's a formula that's been successful for years running and it's made the series one of History's most bankable hits.

But there's been a recent shift in the program's chemistry. And it's hard to deny that fans of the show haven't noticed it. After a long period of success, it appears that the ratings for "American Pickers" are on a downside (via The Sun). What's caused the show's sudden fall from grace? If you know anything about the turbulent 2021 its cast faced, then those low ratings aren't a big surprise to you.

Audiences sorely miss ex-host Frank Fritz

It seems that fans are turning away from the once-popular History show. Season 23 of "American Pickers" has been on a fairly steady decline since its summer 2022 debut. Per The Sun only 928,000 viewers turned in for the show's September 10 installment, which is a rise in viewership after the show fell to 829,000 viewers for their August 27 episode. Per Showbuzz Daily, that plunges the program all the way down to 71st place, crushing it under a tidal wave of college football games. It bowed at just over a million viewers on July 7. The reason seems clear — a timeslot switch to 8 p.m. and, much more seriously, the departure of co-host Frank Fritz.

We've heavily covered what the loss of Fritz has meant to "American Pickers." Fritz had a stroke on July 14, in the wake of having had back surgery, which led to an exposure of lingering ill will between himself and Wolfe when Wolfe announced the news of Fritz's stroke to the public apparently without obtaining permission from Fritz first. Wolfe later announced on Twitter that Fritz wouldn't be participating in the filming of Season 23. Danielle Colby and Mike Wolfe's brother, Robbie, have come in to pick up the narrative slack left behind by Fritz.

But the move has not been popular with fans of the show. Per The Sun, Twitter fans have decided to boycott Season 23, and the ratings suggest they're taking this vow seriously. But while "American Pickers" is down at the moment, one should never count Wolfe and his crew out. As television fans know, it's not over until the Cancellation Bear eats.