Why won’t Netflix give ‘Anne With an E’ a well-deserved season 4?
“Isn’t it amazing how every day can be an adventure?” Oh how we miss hearing Anne’s heartened expressions of true joie-de-vivre. The wide-eyed red-headed protagonist of Anne With an E sets our souls ablaze as kindred spirits watch her stumble through youthful adventures in her coming-of-age tale.
The endearing Netflix series is derived from the sprawling pages of the turn-of-the-twentieth-century Canadian novel Anne of Green Gables, and its charming content has continued to make for a stirring & relevant story throughout all three seasons. The progressive Anne With an E adaptation has been applauded for its resolute portrayal of slavery, Indigenous boarding schools, sexual assault, and feminism.
While the Anne With an E season 3 finale certainly has moments of exciting resolution, fans were crushed to hear that Netflix pulled the rug from under such a precious show and that there would be no season 4. We’re left shaking our fists at Netflix asking, “why – why take Anne With an E away from us?”
When Anne With an E was cancelled in 2019, fans as well as the cast & crew of the series were up in arms, organizing petitions (which got over 1.5 million signatures), hashtag campaigns, and even inspired hotshot celebrities like Ryan Reynolds & Sam Smith to stand up for the show.
But alas, all of the tremendous efforts were in vain because the plug was inevitably pulled, and there’s currently no intention of bringing Anne With an E to our screens again. Hopes for an Anne With an E season 4 are tragically unrequited for the time being, and nothing on the horizon appears to change the show’s fate.
Why was it cancelled?
Who do we have to blame for cutting off our connection to the delightful tales of Anne & friends? What does Netflix have to say for itself? Here’s how the Canadian Broadcast Company and Netflix said goodbye in a joint statement:
“We’ve been thrilled to bring the quintessentially Canadian story of Anne with an E to viewers around the world. We’re thankful to producers Moira Walley-Beckett and Miranda de Pencier and to the talented cast and crew for their incredible work in sharing Anne’s story with a new generation. We hope fans of the show love this final season as much as we do, and that it brings a satisfying conclusion to Anne’s journey.”
Well Netflix, we’re not satisfied with the conclusion, and the creator wasn’t ready to give up on the series either. “Please know that we fought,” creator Moira Walley-Beckett wrote on Instagram. “We tried to change their minds. We tried to find a new home. We tried for a finale movie . . . We tried our best . . . Art and Commerce is never an easy marriage.
“I often find it inexplicable,” Walley-Beckett continued. “This is one of those times. But it’s impossible to argue with words like Economics, Algorithms, Demographics, etc., etc. But those words and others like them are the reason why the Networks don’t want to continue.”
With no network willing to invest in Anne With an E, producer Miranda de Pencier could only concur with Walley-Beckett, assuring fans that the series was indeed over. However, Anne With an E season 3 came out on Netflix around the same time CBC cut ties with Netflix, so some theorize the series was simply caught in the crossfire. With the huge adoring fanbase, we doubt the cause was all about numbers.
Justice for Ka’kwet
With plenty of source content and intriguing storylines, we could make so many arguments to give Anne With an E a season 4 or movie or something, but we’re going to focus on one glaring plot point we simply cannot give up on. The most prominent question on our mind is: what happens to Anne’s Indigenous friend Ka’kwet?
Anne’s future may be tied up all neat in a pretty bow with her family history known, her romance with Gilbert finally ignited, and her educational future all ready to go, but Ka’kwet’s story was left on a despairing cliffhanger.
Anne With an E season 3 added Indigenous Mi’kmaw characters, casting Indigenous actors to play the important roles. According to Mi’kmaw writer Kispesan, Anne With an E excels as a settler show due to the “care and respect put into representing the peoples they are using in their stories.” Ka’kwet & Anne are fast friends in the show, truly treasuring how diversity broadens the mind.
Honoring an accurate telling of history, Anne With an E depicts the horrors of Canada’s Indigenous residential schools as Ka’kwet faces deeply traumatic experiences in one of these abusive assimilation institutions. At one point she is able to escape from the school and reunite with her family, but sadly, like so many true stories of the time period, she is captured again.
Characters of diverse races & sexualities who face discrimation like Bash & Cole get a taste of resolution throughout the series as they develop, but no such justice is given to Ka’kwet or her parents who are shown waiting indefinitely outside of the school, praying for a moment they can rescue their daughter. Leaving Ka’kwet’s ending unknown & unsafe is a great injustice that Anne With an E season 4 would undoubtedly resolve.
Are you praying for Ka’kwet and Anne With an E season 4? Let us know in the comments.