Netflix too often cancels shows too quickly, never letting them grow and instead, they have given up on them way too quickly.
With the streaming war and the quest for marketable content well underway, streaming services are trying their hardest to find their next big show. The race for content is here to stay, and with that, many shows never get the chance they deserve, seeing their time in the limelight fade quickly. Netflix is probably the guiltiest of that. Over the years, they have cancelled many shows too quickly, never allowing them to grow from word of mouth and leaving those who had watched them from the beginning hanging without a proper conclusion.
The list of cancelled shows by Netflix is long, but some hurt more than others. Here are nine shows that Netflix just gave up on too quickly and deserved another season.
A group of teenagers finds themselves at the center of the rise of hip hop and disco music in the 1970s. The group must find a way to balance their love for music and their desire to make it out of The Bronx while also trying to survive the life that their circumstance seem to be leading them towards.
The Get Down was Baz Luhrmann’s baby, a show he spent more than a decade trying to make. He put all of his time and efforts in and was poised to be Netflix’s next big thing. At the time, The Get Down was the streaming service’s most expensive show, having cost around $120 million to make, exceeding the $7.5 million that the show was initially supposed to cost them.
Released in two parts, the first — and only — season had a lot of expectations, not only because of the person behind it but also because of the massive budget. Less than a month after releasing the second part, Netflix announced that the show would not return. It was understandable but still disappointing since The Get Down was incredible in all aspects and deserved a second chance to conclude the story it was trying to tell.
Everything Sucks! (2018)
When a member of the A/V club destroys the Drama Club’s set for this year’s play, the two clubs join together to film a movie. Through the filming, the teenagers are forced to deal with their issues such as finding their sexualities, mental health, and growing up.
After the release of Stranger Things, banking on nostalgia was something that many shows tried their hand at. Not all succeeded, but a few found a way to be original in the wave of it. Everything Sucks! was a prime example of that, banking on nostalgia while also trying to be authentic in many ways. It tried to tackle important subjects representing what most go through in high school. It was a breath of fresh air and had the flavor of shows like Freaks and Geeks or even Dawson’s Creek.
It was a show that got better and better with every episode and perfectly set up the second season it never got, a show that had the potential to be around for a long time, with a lot of the characters being first-year students in the first season. It was another example of Netflix simply giving up on a great concept instead of letting it maybe grow into something bigger and better.
The Society (2019)
When everyone in their town disappears, a group of teenagers must learn how to run their community. Incapable of contacting anyone with a telephone or the Internet, the teenagers must create their own rules to survive on the limited resources that the town has. The teenagers find themselves trapped in their town after a dense forest appears around it and the outside world no longer exists.
The Society, unlike most shows on this list, was quite popular and had a very active following after the first season premiered. It even got a second season renewal, with the cast making a video announcement to reveal it. It looked great for the show’s future until the pandemic happened. This forced Netflix to backtrack on its renewal; the pandemic had taken a toll on their budget. With the struggle to find a way to schedule the cast with the uncertainty that the pandemic brought, the streaming service had to decide what to do with the show.
To this day, the show’s fans continue to petition for the show to come back. Their love for it never flattered, and while the chances of a revival are slim, they will not hear of it. It is one of those cancellations that, looking back, still make no sense since it was so popular, but the pandemic’s uncertainty created an environment where the cancellation made all the sense in the world.
I Am Not Okay With This (2020)
Sydney must navigate the trials and tribulations of high school while also dealing with her complicated family dynamics, sexuality, and the mysterious superpowers that have started manifesting within her.
From the producers of Stranger Thingsand The End of the F***ing World, I Am Not Okay With This was praised when it was released and looked like it would have a long run. Based on the comics of the same name, I Am Not Okay With This was poised to bring the fans of both shows together. And for the most part, the first season was a success. The performances were praised, and the show was popular on social media. Still, just like The Society, instead of renewal like everyone expected, Netflix decided to cancel the show because of the pandemic.
This was the second time Netflix cancelled a successful show because of the pandemic, opening the possibility of more shows finding themselves cancelled. The cancellation was surprising, mainly because of the team behind the show, a team that had worked with Netflix previously. On top of that, I Am Not Okay With This was popular, and many believed the show to have already been not only renewed but that the second season was already almost done being written.
Julie and The Phantoms (2020)
When Julie, a teenage girl who has a passion for music, meets a group of teenage boys in her mom’s old studio, she finds herself surprised when she realizes that they have been dead for the past 25 years. Together, they try to figure out what happened and bring each other closer by doing what they all love the most: playing music.
Julie and The Phantomswas one of those shows that arrived without much fanfare, but soon gathered a small but dedicated fanbase over the few months it lived in limbo. And that fanbase was vocal about wanting the show to continue. While it was marketed for a younger audience, Julie and The Phantoms found itself adored by the generation that had followed creator Kenny Ortega since his High School Musical days.
It wasn’t surprising when Ortega broke the news that the show would not be coming back after a year of no words about a second season. It was, however, disconcerting that it took so long to know what most fans of the show already guessed. This show had a positive message, a following, and actually grew over time, and yet, Netflix still decided to stop it before it even had a chance to start.
The Irregulars (2021)
In Victorian London, a group of street teenagers is manipulated into solving crimes for the sinister Doctor Watson and his mysterious business partner, the well-known Sherlock Holmes.
Sherlock Holmes adaptations are not new; they have been done repeatedly, to the point where there is market saturation. The difference was that The Irregulars decided to do something different with its subject. Instead of focusing on Holmes and Watson, it made them supporting characters and focused on kids, making Holmes and Watson antagonists in their story. It was original and intriguing to watch, a show that diverted expectations and brought supernatural elements to a setting we already knew.
The show was rumored to be renewed, with reports that it would start filming during the summer, until Netflix announced in May 2021 that they had cancelled the series. No reasons were given why they had decided to cancel the show, but with the number of shows that the streaming service had released during that year, it was clear that The Irregulars got lost in the grand scheme of things. It’s a shame because the show had a lot of potential and the possibilities were endless in terms of story with how much world-building had been done during its first season.
1899 follows the crew and passengers aboard a steamship named Kerberos and the mysterious events that unravel on deck as they embark on a voyage from Europe to New York. The promise of a bright and promising future at a new destination suddenly turns bleak when they encounter another emigrating ship adrift at sea. Their unexpected nightmarish discovery sets off a chain of mysterious events that leaves Kerberos‘ passengers frightened to their bones, giving rise to more questions than they can answer.
The mind-bending show was created by the team behind Dark, Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar. It was clearly planned to span multiple seasons, as the Season 1 finale left many unanswered questions. However, that was not to be; Netflix announced the cancellation of the series in January 2023.
With the revelation in the finale that the whole thing was part of a simulation, a second season would’ve likely been an entirely different show. It would’ve been interesting to see what Friese and bo Odar had in store for our characters, but sadly, now we’ll never know.
The Midnight Club (2022)
Mike Flanagan and Leah Fong’s The Midnight Club follows a group of terminal young adults spending the last months of their lives together at a hospice. To help them pass the time and deal with their very complicated issues, the patients of Brightcliffe gather around in the library every night, just as the clock marks midnight. There is a pact among the patients, through which they promise to send signs from the beyond when they die, but the Midnight Club is mostly about telling horror stories. It’s an anthology series in a way, and some of the stories are truly terrifying.
The series ends with a classic cliffhanger, which, due to the show’s cancellation, we’ll never know the resolution for. According to Flanagan, the series was meant to last multiple seasons. “This is the first time we’ve ever designed anything to be ongoing,” he told Collider. “And it’s strange, it’s a whole new vibe, because you want the season to wrap up and be satisfying. But you need to leave enough on the field that people might want to come back.”
Just before the cancellation, Flanagan announced that he’d signed a deal with Amazon Studios, though it’s not clear if this had anything to do with The Midnight Club‘s cancellation.
Warrior Nun (2020-2022)
Though most shows on this list only lasted one season, Warrior Nun deserves its place of honor for the sheer fan outrage at its cancellation. The show premiered in 2020, and was cancelled shortly after Season 2 debuted on the streamer.
The show follows Ava (Alba Baptista), an orphaned teenager who wakes up in a morgue to discover she now has superpowers as the “chosen one” for a secret society of demon-hunting nuns. The show earned a devoted fan base for its unique lore, compelling plot twists and its multi-dimensional characters, including the Season 2 beloved ship of Ava and Beatrice (Kristina Tonteri-Young), known by fans as Avatrice. Season 2 set up this powerful relationship, only to deny fans what was sure to be an epic conclusion.