HomeOur ObsessionsFandom: What do ‘The OA’, ‘Krypton’, and ‘Cloak and Dagger’ have in common?

Fandom: What do ‘The OA’, ‘Krypton’, and ‘Cloak and Dagger’ have in common?

Ever felt the heartbreak of your favorite show getting cancelled? Here are some recent shows that just ended too soon.

Fandom: What do ‘The OA’, ‘Krypton’, and ‘Cloak and Dagger’ have in common?

2019 has truly been the year of the cancellation. There’s a long, varied list of great shows, average shows, and shows that were not able to reach their true potential before the network pulled the cord. The battle of the streaming platforms has placed these shows in a weird kind of limbo, with the potential for series to face a second life on CBS All Access or NBC’s Peacock, but right now, the future seems grim.

Here’s our rundown of this year’s casualties so far in all their inglory.

American Vandal

Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%

Efforts to save the show

Netflix’s American Vandal was two seasons of incredible storytelling, focused primarily on genitalia graffiti and poop pranks. It was canceled before we could see the madness of a third season, despite the Peabody Award and Emmy nomination.

Why it should be saved

American Vandal took the mockumentary to new levels, then spraypainted a penis on it. It was funny and absurd and deranged and took itself so, so seriously. Worse than that, will we ever truly resolve the Turd Burglars of America case?

What the fans say

The show received critical acclaim, and fans have been vocal about the injustice of stopping these stalwart investigators before justice is served.

How it’s looking

Netflix thanked the creators and everyone involved with the series, which always sounds like a death knell – but there has been a series of talks at CBS TV Studios to give American Vandal a new home. Deadline reported other platforms were also interested. 

BoJack Horseman

Rotten Tomatoes score: 93%

Efforts to save the show

BoJack Horseman actor Aaron Paul revealed Netflix cancelled the animated series back in September, which has not given fans the same amount of time to mobilize as The OA fans, with their billboards and websites and attempts to sever the bridge between space and time, but there has been an outpouring of support and love for BoJack.

In between the #cancelNetflix tweets, Paul revealed that a number of fans have spoken to him about how important it was to see an asexual character represented onscreen with Paul’s Todd Chavez.

Why it should be saved

BoJack Horseman is the perfect mix of bitter and sweet as a sharply satirical study of self-loathing people (and horses, and dolphins and cats and dogs). 

What the fans say

While this one stings, consensus among fans is mixed. Some are rightfully upset that a wonderful show is ending, while others have pointed out Bojack Horseman ran for twice as long as other Netflix shows with its six seasons. More than that, BoJack has maintained its high quality from the first season to the last.

How it’s looking

Yeah, it’s not coming back.

Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger

Rotten Tomatoes score: 89%

Efforts to save the show

There was a massive outcry from fans over the cancellation of this series, the topic trending on U.S. Twitter for several hours. There are the seemingly requisite online petitions as well. Fans are also tweeting to Disney+ and Hulu in order to get Cloak & Dagger saved. Hulu would probably be the best bet as the series will cross over with its popular Runaways

Why it needs to be saved

Cloak & Dagger told one of the best superhero stories on television. It was brave enough to talk about racial profiling, sexual assault, sex trafficking, and more over its two-season run. It featured thoughtful conversations on what it means to be a woman and an African-American in present day America. It elevated itself as a standout show in the Marvel canon and its story deserves to continue.

What the fans say

The fans want Freeform’s metaphorical head on a platter for cancelling Cloak & Dagger. Right now, however, they’ll settle for the show to be saved. Showrunner Joe Pokaski dedicated a wonderful Twitter thread to the series. He reminded fans that you “can’t keep Tyrone and Tandy in a drawer”.

How it’s looking 

As the news is still relatively recent, there’s hope someone may save Cloak & Dagger. Remember, Lucifer wasn’t saved until the last possible moment. It will just take some persistent and dedicated fans to get a network or service to care enough to snatch it up. 

Deadly Class

Rotten Tomatoes score: 64%

Efforts to save the show

SyFy cancelled Deadly Class back in June and co-creator and executive producer Rick Remender announced the bad news on social media, in addition to confirming they were not able to find a second home for the series. The first season ended on a cliffhanger, but Remender urged fans curious to know what happened to the Kings Dominion students to pick up the comics to continue with the story.

Why it should be saved

We are in a golden age of teenagers with superpowers and an attitude towards authority, and despite killer action scenes and a (literal) killer cast, Deadly Class failed to garner the same media attention as other shows about disaffected teenagers with superpowers, such as Stranger Things.

What the fans say

While fans have expressed their support for the writing and characters, the sting is a little less since the continuation of the comics means a continuation of the world of the story.

How it’s looking

Remender’s declaration that they were unable to find a second home for the series, in addition to urging fans to turn to the comics the show is based on, suggests there’s not going to be a second season any time soon.

Designated Survivor

Rotten Tomatoes score: 71%

Efforts to save the show

Designated Survivor has survived a few network changes at this point. After the show was axed at ABC, it was salvaged by Netflix and just concluded its third season, weeks after a new season with a new showrunner.

Why it should be saved

Designated Survivor had a remarkably strong debut on ABC, but over the course of the first season, viewership flagged. Despite a cult following that moved over to Netflix, it was unable to maintain its appeal to a wider audience. 

What the fans say

Fans expressed frustration that the show was cancelled on Netflix after only one season, particularly when the push of other shows like Netflix’s Luther received a much warmer reception on the service. 

How it’s looking

Netflix issued a statement to thank the show’s star and executive producer, Kiefer Sutherland, for his “passion, dedication, and an unforgettable performance as President Kirkman.”

Besides thanking the cast and crew, there has not been discussion related to pushing another platform to accept the show.

Divorce

Rotten Tomatoes score: 77%

Efforts to save the show

HBO’s Divorce is cancelled, and it’s splitting the family apart. The series toed the line between comedy and drama from scene to scene, as a divorcing couple struggled to keep it together as their marriage fell apart. It made a complete 180º from the first season to the second, as the black comedy became more hopeful and optimistic. For the third season, Divorce received its lowest episode order to date.

In addition to the lower episode count, HBO reported the show’s ratings have lagged as well.

Why it should be saved

The bleak black comedy of the first season changed notably in season two, giving fans genre whiplash. Still, Divorce was a refreshing take on a subject few seem willing to broach without a Parent Trap-style conclusion where the parents get together in the end.

What the fans say

Series lead Sarah Jessica Parker said concluding the show with six episodes for season three was important to the showrunners and crew, giving the sense that there will at least be a conclusion for the series.

How it’s looking?

Divorce is splitting up, but it doesn’t mean they love us any less.

Future Man

Rotten Tomatoes score: 91%

Efforts to save the show

Hulu renewed Future Man for a third and final season, with the goal to resolve all of the past and future storylines for its fans. The renewal was announced three months after Hulu released all 13 episodes for the second season. 

Why it should be saved

In a crowded TV landscape, it’s becoming more and more difficult for a show to stand out, and despite the actual time travel featured heavily in Future Man, the show faced some trouble finding its feet. Nevertheless, fans praise the series’s strong cast and irreverent, creative humor.

What the fans say

Fans expressed their hope the series would return, but the finality of the season three announcement (plus Disney’s stake in the service), makes it seem final.

How it’s looking

Disney holds a majority ownership stake in Hulu, and the new roster includes Disney+’s High Fidelity, Castle Rock, Four Weddings and a Funeral, and a host of others. It seems Future Man might have slipped through the (time travel) cracks.

Into the Badlands

Rotten Tomatoes score: 83%

Efforts to save the show

Into the Badlands’s subreddit is still hard at work figuring out how to save the stylish martial arts drama. There have been petitions to streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon along with a petition. The hashtag #saveintothebadlands was created in order to get interest in the series renewal going.

Why it needs to be saved

The series mixed a compelling character drama in a postapocalyptic world with some of the slickest and most beautiful fight choreography on television. Into the Badlands was a singularly unique series with a very devoted following of loyal fans. It wasn’t done unfolding the dangerous, yet compelling, world. 

What the fans say

Fans were expecting the cancellation when AMC announced it. Despite the original high hopes and interest for the series, it just didn’t perform like the cable channel hoped it would. Fans were upset that AMC didn’t see the value in the series once it was clear that it wouldn’t be the next The Walking Dead.

How it’s looking 

Into the Badlands is basically a writeoff. It was cancelled early on in the year. There has been no news on efforts to save the show. 

Krypton

Rotten Tomatoes score: 61% (S1), 100% (S2)

Efforts to save the show

Like so many cancelled shows on this list, Krypton fans took to social media to share their ire over its cancellation. There have been trending hashtags and petitions to have a network pick up the series, perhaps HBO Max or Amazon. Amazon has saved previously cancelled Syfy series The Expanse and HBO Max has a lot of DC content on its service.

Why it needs to be saved

Krypton had an ambitious 7-season arc planned. Many thought it was an excellent expansion of the Superman mythos, allowing for Krypton to feel more real than the doomed planet of Kal-El. Others thought there was a huge potential to see the series grow into something great.

What the fans say

Fans believe the cancellation unfair, that it has something to do with DC’s focus on streaming shows (presumably those not on The CW). Many believe Krypton got the short end of the stick by the network (Syfy) and their parent companies. 

How it’s looking 

Considering we haven’t heard much, things aren’t looking great for Krypton. HBO Max did do an unveiling of its DC content along with other series. While it had some DC Universe shows (R.I.P to DC Universe), Krypton did not seem to make the cut.

Lodge 49

Rotten Tomatoes score: 86%

Efforts to save the show

Lodge 49’s is probably the freshest cancellation out of the list that we’re bringing you. This critically acclaimed but low-rated series has a very loyal fanbase. Efforts to get the show saved in some capacity are ongoing and being organized. 

EW released a passionate plea on Lodge 49’s behalf and Twitter hashtags and subreddits have sprung up. Executive producer Paul Giamatti told fans to “make a hell of a lot of noise” in order to save the series.

Why it should be saved

This “modern fable” follows a former surfer dude named Dud (Wyatt Russell) who joins a fraternal order. Upon joining the Ancient and Benevolent Order of the Lynx, Dud finds himself unraveling mysteries hidden within the twisting passages of the building. Lodge 49 is an original concept with some great performances and imaginative writing, and it’s a shame that something so creative is ending.

What the fans say

Fans are ready and willing to fight tooth and nail for Lodge 49. In addition to Twitter and Reddit there are pleas from major publications asking for someone to save the show. Fans are ready and willing to fight.

How it’s looking 

It’s too soon to tell. The show was cancelled just days ago. We’ll have to wait and see if anyone snaps Lodge 49 up.

The OA

Rotten Tomatoes score: 84%

Efforts to save the show

Fans of Netflix’s The OA have done everything short of creating a hole in the timespace continuum to try to save the show. 

The first stage of grief is denial, and fans theorized the show was not actually cancelled, then petitions were created, artwork and video essays were made, hashtags were shouted into the void. They built a website in honor of the show, they mounted a billboard in New York City’s Time Square, and in a bizarre twist, they even reached out to actress Hillary Duff through Twitter to get her to watch the show.

Why it should be saved

The OA was different than any other TV show. Both seasons were engrossing to watch and headed in completely different directions than the viewers could expect. The OA creators Brit Marling and Zal Batmanglij reportedly planned the series as a five-season event, and without giving away too many spoilers, the end of the second season was going to introduce a truly insane third one.

What the fans say

The show and its fans are something special, and judging from Twitter and the aforementioned billboard, they’re not giving up easily. 

How it’s looking

Despite the fan pushback, The OA is DOA. However, Netflix Vice President Cindy Holland said the streaming service looked “forward to working with them again in the future, in this and perhaps many other dimensions.”

Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists

Rotten Tomatoes score: 100%

Efforts to save the show

PLL fans tend to go hard for anything connected to their beloved franchise. This one is no exception. There have been Twitter campaigns, online petitions, and begging for a streaming service to pick-up the series. They definitely weren’t afraid to put Freeform on notice for dropping the series.

Why it should be saved

Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists was a stylish and worthy predecessor to Pretty Little Liars. At the center was a fascinating mystery that compelled fans to keep watching. Maybe it didn’t have the same audience numbers as its predecessor, but it did have a dedicated fan base that would keep coming back. 

What the fans say 

The fans want PLL to come back. They’ve campaigned as hard as they possibly could in order to bring it back. They’re plenty mad at Freeform for ditching the show before it really had the chance to spread its wings.

How it’s looking

Not great: no networks or streaming services have shown interest in picking Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists up. This may be the last time we see any Liars again.

Santa Clarita Diet

Rotten Tomatoes score: 89%

Efforts to save the show

There was a pretty big backlash when Netflix, as they so often do, unceremoniously cancelled the cult-favorite zombie comedy (a.k.a. zomcom). There were the usual efforts like petitioning the site, Change.org petition, and taking to Twitter. Various entertainment outlets demanded the return of the series, which struck a balance between horror & comedy that very few have achieved.

Why it should be saved

Tired of the same old morbid zombie tale? Santa Clarita Diet offered a fresh take on the genre. Sheila (Drew Barrymore) wasn’t your shuffling member of a groaning horde. She’s bright, engaging, and fun, even when she’s snacking on various body parts. Her chemistry with Timothy Olyphant, who played her devoted husband Joel, is spot on. It was something new and different in the endless sea of doom and gloom apocalyptic scenarios.

What the fans say

Fans are still pretty burned over the cancellation of the beloved series. As it turns out, the axe in this case largely had to do with the rising costs to make Netflix shows. While Santa Clarita Diet had its fanbase, it wasn’t a smash hit like Stranger Things. Netflix is a cruel, cruel mistress in that regard.

How it’s looking 

Santa Clarita Diet was cancelled in April. The cast contracts have since run out, so it will make picking up the series that much harder. Given that it occupied a weird space, it was hard to say where the show would have ended up. Either way, it’s safe to say that Santa Clarita Diet is well in the grave. 

SMILF

Rotten Tomatoes score: 91%

Efforts to save the show

Series creator and star Frankie Shaw was accused by cast and crew of mishandling sex scenes and other inappropriate conduct on set. Given that controversy, it’s hard to find any real effort by fans or the behind-the-scenes team to save SMILF. We should note that Shaw was cleared of the allegations against her.

Why it needs to be saved

Despite the controversy, SMILF was an unflinching and very real look at what it means to be a young, single mother. That unique story was what drew in a lot of people to the Showtime comedy, which was praised for its “fresh perspective” by critics. 

What the fans say

After the fourth episode of the second season aired amidst the controversy, Showtime dropped the series claiming it was due to a “variety of factors”. Shaw said of the cancellation, “I can’t express how much I’ve loved making this show, how much I love the cast and crew and appreciate Showtime as creative partners.” 

How it’s looking 

We don’t think the series will come back. Shaw has moved onto other projects, such as Homecoming and the Jay and Silent Bob Reboot. 

Sneaky Pete

Rotten Tomatoes score: 96%

Efforts to save the show

This popular yet under-the-radar gem has at least four online petitions demanding its renewal. Critics definitely want to see more of Sneaky Pete as the series was a critical darling, even if it never showed up for awards season. Of course, there are just too many good shows on nowadays. This didn’t have the rabid pushback of some of the other shows on the list. 

Why it should be saved

Sneaky Pete, which follows con-man Marius (Giovanni Ribisi) assuming his former cellmate’s identity in order to escape a pissed-off mobster (Bryan Cranston), had a lot going for it. 

Cranston and David Shore (House) co-created the series, which was praised for its excellent cast and seamless blending of a family dramedy with crime capers. Sneaky Pete was different, fresh, and consistently turned out some amazing performances from its impeccable cast.

What the fans say

Fans would like to see Sneaky Pete return, but it was really hard to get made as it stood. It took Cranston years to find a home for the series, which was almost made on CBS. The fact that Sneaky Pete got three seasons was a miracle in and of itself. Fans would love to see more of this twisty series, but it doesn’t look likely.

How it’s looking 

Sneaky Pete was cancelled by Amazon in June, which means contracts for the series cast has run out. Series star Ribisi in working on the Avatar sequels currently. It looks like this one may not come back. Our fingers are tightly crossed for a wrapup movie one day. 

Tuca and Bertie

Rotten Tomatoes score: 100%

Efforts to save the show

Fans on Twitter have voiced their support of the show, adding that the animation style is easy and cheap to produce, so it makes no sense why Netflix would can the show after one season, before it was able to find its audience.

Why it should be saved

Sometimes things get cancelled and it’s a blessing: wars, debt, D&D’s take on Star Wars, the list goes on.

Other times, cancellations are the worst things in the world.

Netflix’s Tuca and Bertie consisted of one perfect season that was unjustly ripped away from this world before we got to see where it was headed next. It was popular with fans, critically acclaimed, and had a similar animation style to Bojack Horseman but veered off in a weirder, dirtier direction.

What the fans say

The people have spoken, and they have called bullsh**. Fans have rightfully pointed out that a show about a depressed horse ruining everything in his life gets a multitude of seasons, while a gloriously deranged show about avian female friendship gets canned after only 10 episodes.

How it’s looking

Show creator Lisa Hanawalt reported the cancellation on Twitter, adding Netflix would not order a second season but she was “hopeful we can find a home for Tuca & Bertie to continue their adventures.”

Whiskey Cavalier

Rotten Tomatoes score: 85%

Efforts to save the show

Executive producer Bill Lawrence (Scrubs) made such a good appeal to the ABC bosses that the show was briefly reconsidered for a renewal. It didn’t work, obviously. The fans of this much-loved and missed drama campaigned the best they could for a renewal. There were appeals to Netflix, ABC, and even Disney+ to see Whiskey Cavalier picked up in some fashion.

Why it needs to be saved

The freshman drama was a breath of fresh air in the spy genre. An agent from the FBI (Scott Foley) teams up with an agent of CIA (Lauren Cohan) for special inter-agency task force as they save the world and each other. 

Along the way, the duo has some steamy chemistry mixed with navigating harder things than defusing bombs, like office politics. Whiskey Cavalier was praised for its tone and the chemistry of its leads. Basically, it reminded us that spy stories can be fun again.

What the fans say

This was just cruel to fans. It did look like Whiskey Cavalier was going to get that season two renewal, but the hard fist of ABC shattered those dreams. Most of them have accepted that it’s not coming back.

How it’s looking 

Not great. Whiskey Cavalier has been “fully and finally cancelled”. Lauren Cohan agreed to return to The Walking Dead. Scott Foley doesn’t have any active projects listed on his IMDb, but we’re betting that will change when pilots for next season begin casting.

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Molly Harris is a riddle inside an enigma, wrapped in feminine wiles, and nestled in a soft, human skin suit with a blonde wig on top. She arrived to Chicago from the wild cornfields of Indiana and spends most of her time talking about science fiction and glitter and puns.

mharris@filmdaily.co

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