ABC Has Hank-erin' for 'King of the Hill'

The "King" is dead. Long live the "King"?

FOX may be letting go of "King of the Hill" after next season, but the show could live on after that. ABC is interested in picking up the long-running animated series, the showbiz trade papers report.

A handful of cable channels, including FOX sibling FX and Comedy Central, might also be interested, although the cost of acquiring a show for its 14th season could be a little steep for them.

ABC is launching "The Goode Family," an animated show from "King of the Hill" co-creator Mike Judge, later this season. "King of the Hill" could end up pairing with the new show to form an animated hour -- but that would take a while.

Because of the long production cycle for animated shows, the final episodes of "King of the Hill" on FOX won't air until the spring. Even if ABC were to pick up the show, it probably wouldn't make it on the air until at least fall 2009.

So far this season "King of the Hill" is averaging 7.5 million viewers a week. It had its best performance of the season on Sunday (Nov. 2), drawing 8.6 million viewers and a 4.3 rating in the 18-49 demographic.

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