Summary List Placement
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“The Get Down” was an ambitious musical-drama that became the first Netflix show to get canceled after a single season.
Synopsis: “Set in New York in 1977, this music-driven drama series chronicles the rise of hip-hop and the last days of disco — told through the lives, music, art, and dance of the South Bronx kids who would change the world forever.”
Why it was canceled: As reported by Variety, “The Get Down” was plagued with behind-the-scenes issues before it even aired, including several stops and starts to production and a budget that ballooned from $100 million to $120 million.
The first season aired in two parts, but never gained the word-of-mouth buzz that other Netflix originals at the time (like “Stranger Things”) had achieved.
“Girlboss” was panned by critics, and became the first half-hour comedy series axed by the streaming service.
Synopsis: “‘Girlboss’ is inspired by the New York Times best-selling book #Girlboss by Sophia Amoruso, founder of the fashion brand Nasty Gal. The series centers on Amoruso, who began selling vintage clothes on eBay and, by the age of 28, had built the multi-million dollar fashion empire, Nasty Gal.”
Why it was canceled: “Girlboss” was less costly than other Netflix shows that had been canceled by 2017, including “The Get Down” and “Marco Polo.” But it was also one of the first series widely disliked by critics and based on an increasingly fraught true story.
Just one month before “Girlboss” was canceled, Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings told CNBC that he believed the company should have a “higher cancel rate overall” for its series.
“Gypsy” was, at the time, the fastest Netflix had ever decided to cancel a TV show after its premiere.
Synopsis: “‘Gypsy’ is a ten-part psychological thriller that follows Jean Holloway, a Manhattan therapist with a seemingly picturesque life who begins to develop intimate and illicit relationships with the people in her patients’ lives.”
Why it was canceled: Just six weeks after its premiere, “Gypsy” was axed. The drama was also given lackluster reviews by critics, and likely had a much lower viewership than Netflix had hoped for.
Netflix doesn’t release official numbers when it comes to how many people watch a particular program, nor how many of those watch an entire series (as opposed to the first few episodes). But outside observers could see that “Gypsy” never picked up momentum the way other successful Netflix dramas like “Orange Is the New Black” had.
“Disjointed” was a rare one-season series among producer Chuck Lorre’s many TV shows.
Synopsis: “‘Disjointed’ is a workplace comedy starring Kathy Bates as a lifelong advocate for legalization who’s finally living her dream as the owner of an LA-area cannabis dispensary.”
Why it was canceled: “Disjointed” had poor ratings among critics, and never seemed to pick up in popularity, even with its debut season split into two parts (giving it two “premieres”).
The show was produced by the prolific Chuck Lorre (“Two and a Half Men,” “The Big Bang Theory”), who has now made several series for Netflix. “This marks a rare early cancellation for Lorre,” the Hollywood Reporter’s Lesley Goldberg wrote at the time.
“Everything Sucks!” was a well-liked teen series that was canceled less than two months after it premiered.
Synopsis: “A quirky, funny coming of age story that follows two groups of high school misfits, ‘Everything Sucks!’ follows an A/V club and a Drama club who collide in 1996 Oregon.”
Why it was canceled: Netflix’s former vice president of original programming Cindy Holland told reporters that “Everything Sucks!” had a “very low completion rate.”
“We realized that it is very unlikely that we would be able to grow the audience, move a whole new audience through the show and have a large enough audience to justify a season two,” Holland said.
“Seven Seconds” was potentially going to be an anthology series, but was axed after one season.
Synopsis: “After a white cop accidentally hits and critically injures a black teenager, a northeastern city explodes with racial tensions, an attempted cover-up and its aftermath, and the trial of the century.”
Why it was canceled: The show premiered to mixed reviews, and Netflix canceled it after less than two months. Despite the choice to discontinue the series, Netflix submitted “Seven Seconds” for Emmys consideration that year.
Star Regina King won the Emmy for best lead actress in a limited series or movie for her performance in “Seven Seconds.”
“The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale” was the beginning of Netflix’s experiment with weekly programming.
Synopsis: “‘The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale’ is a weekly topical series featuring celebrity guests, comedy sketches, and insane video clips from every corner of the internet.”
Why it was canceled: Netflix’s TV show success was initially built around the binge-format. When the company started testing topical weekly talk shows like this one, the first attempts floundered.
“Obviously Netflix has trained their audience to binge watch, and we actually tried that, as well,” McHale said in a radio interview after the cancellation. “But so far people aren’t watching Netflix that way.”
“The Break with Michelle Wolf” was in the same boat as “The Joel McHale” show.
Synopsis: “‘The Break with Michelle Wolf,’ a weekly half-hour variety/sketch series, will have jokes, sketches, celebrities, and more.”
Why it was canceled: At the same time Netflix decided to pull the plug on “The Joel McHale Show,” it also canceled Michelle Wolf’s weekly talk-comedy series. Though her show found more buzz, thanks to the comedian’s divisive White House Correspondents’ Dinner set, it wasn’t able to break through.
Both shows weren’t building a big-enough audience to justify renewals. “Sources say neither show drew enough viewership,” Deadline reported at the time.
“All About the Washingtons” was yet another new Netflix comedy that only got tp debut one season in 2018.
Synopsis:“‘All About the Washingtons’ is an autobiographical scripted family sitcom that follows Joey Washington (Rev Run aka Joseph Simmons) and his wife Justine Washington (Justine Simmons), playing fictionalized versions of themselves raising a family of kids.”
Why it was canceled: Critics didn’t love “All About the Washingtons,” nor did it garner a big fanbase among subscribers. The show was one of the few Netflix originals that began at a different studio.
In 2016, ABC had originally picked up the pilot script, but eventually passed on the overall series. That’s when Netflix entered the picture and ordered a first (and eventually last) season to be produced.
“The Good Cop” added to Netflix’s growing list of canceled comedies in 2018.
Synopsis: “In ‘The Good Cop,’ Tony Danza plays Big Tony, a lovable yet not exactly honorable, former NYPD officer who never followed the rules. He lives with his son, TJ (Josh Groban) a brilliant, straight-laced NYPD detective who makes a point of always following the rules while solving Brooklyn’s toughest cases.”
Why it was canceled: “The Good Cop” was another comedy that premiered in 2018 to middling reviews from critics.
“‘The Good Cop’ will not return for a second season,” Netflix said in a statement. “We’re grateful to creator Andy Breckman and his fellow producers, writers, the incredible crew and especially stars Tony Danza and Josh Groban for bringing this classic odd couple father-son story to Netflix.”
“Turn Up Charlie” premiered in the spring of 2019, but the decision to cancel the series wasn’t made until over a year later.
Synopsis: “‘Turn Up Charlie’ centers on the titular Charlie, a struggling DJ and eternal bachelor, who is given a final chance at success when he reluctantly becomes a ‘manny’ to his famous best friend’s problem-child daughter, Gabby.”
Why it was canceled: Though Netflix never gave a specific reason for its cancellation of “Turn Up Charlie,” which starred Idris Elba, the decision was likely made for similar reasons to most of the streaming company’s axed shows: The internal viewing data didn’t justify (in executive’s eyes) the cost of a second season.
“Turn Up Charlie” also had very mixed reviews among critics.
“No Good Nick” is another sitcom that fell by the wayside after its premiere on Netflix.
Synopsis: “‘No Good Nick’ follows 13-year-old Nick, short for Nicole, who infiltrates a family with the intention to get revenge on them for unknowingly ruining her life. As she gets to know the family, she will find compassion for them and will struggle with whether or not she can ultimately go through with the plan.”
Why it was canceled: The show premiered to little fanfare and very few reviews. As Netflix’s volume of original content grew, shows like “No Good Nick” struggled to break through. The show’s creator, David H. Steinberg, released a statement announcing the cancellation and said it made their team “cry.”
“We wished we could have made another season but it wasn’t up to us, the network calls the shots!” he said in one tweet.
“Chambers” was a drama series costarring Uma Thurman that failed to draw a big enough audience.
Synopsis: “A young heart attack survivor becomes consumed by the mystery surrounding the heart that saved her life.”
Why it was canceled: At the time “Chambers” was canceled, Deadline reported that Netflix had an 80% renewal rate for its shows going from season one to season two.
Unfortunately “Chambers” was not among that majority, and was canceled just a couple of months after its first season had premiered to middling reviews from critics.
“Tuca and Bertie” was the first animated Netflix series to get canceled after just one season, and the decision caused an uproar among fans.
Synopsis: “‘Tuca and Bertie’ is an animated comedy series about the friendship between two 30-year-old bird women who live in the same apartment building: Tuca, a cocky, care-free toucan, and Bertie, an anxious, daydreaming songbird.”
Why it was canceled: With a nearly 100% “certified fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes among critics, “Tuca and Bertie” was one of the first Netflix single-season cancellations that resulted in a large backlash from audiences.
As the Hollywood Reporter noted at the time, showrunner Lisa Hanawalt tweeted somewhat cryptically about how the “algorithm” behind the cancellation didn’t take into account how beloved the series was.
In 2020, the show was revived for a second season by Adult Swim.
“The Society” was a teen apocalyptic drama that was canceled after Netflix had already announced a second season was on the way.
Synopsis: “When everyone else mysteriously vanishes from their wealthy town, the teen residents of West Ham must forge their own society to survive.”
Why it was canceled: In the summer of 2019, Netflix announced that “The Society” had been renewed for a second season. But a year later, in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the company reversed that decision. The announcement came at the same time that Netflix canceled “I Am Not Okay With This.”
“Both shows were well liked internally at Netflix in addition to the critical acclaim they received upon release, but the plug was pulled on both due to the uncertainty around when they could begin production due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” one source reportedly told Variety.
“The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance” was an unfinished prequel series meant to explain the lead-up to the iconic ’80s movie “The Dark Crystal.”
Synopsis: “As power-hungry overlords drain life from the planet Thra, a group of brave Gelfling unite on a quest to save their world and fight off the darkness.”
Why it was canceled: After more than a year of no news about a potential second season for “The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance,” i09 broke the news that Netflix had decided to cancel the show. It had just won an Emmy for best children’s program the week prior.
Though an exact reason for the cancellation was not made public, a Netflix-connected source reportedly told the Hollywood Reporter that the show was an “expensive disappointment.”
“Daybreak” was another apocalyptic teen drama, this time based on a graphic novel by the same name, that only lasted for one season.
Synopsis: “In this post-apocalyptic, genre-bending series, the city of Glendale, California, is populated by marauding gangs of jocks, gamers, the 4-H Club, and other fearsome tribes who are kicking ass as they fight to survive in the wake of a nuclear blast (on the night of Homecoming…ugh).”
Why it was canceled: Specifics around the “Daybreak” cancellation are unknown, but the show had mixed reviews from critics and likely low-viewership compared to other Netflix originals.
Earlier in 2019, Netflix had canceled “One Day at a Time” after three seasons, citing that “simply not enough people watched to justify another season.”
“Merry Happy Whatever” was Netflix’s first original holiday-themed TV show.
Synopsis: “Set during the happy but hectic days before and after Christmas, ‘Merry Happy Whatever’ follows Don Quinn, a strong-willed patriarch from Philadelphia doing his best to balance the stress of the holidays with the demands of his close-knit but eclectic family — and his family doing their best to manage him.”
Why it was canceled: The cancellation of “Merry, Happy, Whatever” largely flew under-the-radar. It wasn’t until the producer, Terry Cawley, posted the news on Instagram that people knew the show wasn’t returning for a second season.
“V Wars” was a vampire-zombie drama that got the axe among a slew of 2020 cancellations.
Synopsis: “Dr. Luther Swann enters a world of untold horror when a mysterious disease transforms his best friend, Michael Fayne, into a murderous predator who feeds on other humans.”
Why it was canceled: This is yet another series without a reported reason behind the cancellation, but its December 2019 premiere was met with mostly negative reviews from critics.
“V Wars” was produced by IDW Entertainment, a company behind two other Netflix originals: “October Faction” and “Locke and Key.” Of those, only “Locke and Key” was given a season two renewal this year.
“Soundtrack” was another December 2019 series that was canceled a few months into 2020.
Synopsis: “‘Soundtrack’ is a romantic musical drama that looks at the love stories connecting a diverse, disparate group of people in contemporary Los Angeles through the music that lives inside their hearts and minds.”
Why it was canceled: Originally developed for Fox before moving to Netflix, “Soundtrack” was a unique musical series. The show’s creator, Joshua Safran, said in a Twitter post that it felt like they had made a show that “all but disappeared” after it premiered on Netflix.
“Barely even got reviewed,” he said. “I personally feel like it never came out.”
By 2019 and heading into 2020, the number of original shows debuting on Netflix was increasing exponentially, making it harder for audiences to be aware of every new series coming out week to week.
“Astronomy Club: The Sketch Show” was a sketch comedy show that only lasted for one season.
Synopsis: “The members of the eponymous group, who first formed in 2014 and built a following through live performance in New York, include Shawtane Bowen, Jonathan Braylock, Ray Cordova, James III, Caroline Martin, Jerah Milligan, Monique Moses, and Keisha Zollar. Sketches will explore an array of topics ranging from pop culture and social issues to the Black experience.”
Why it was canceled: This is another cancellation that was underreported at the time. It wasn’t until halfway through 2020, more than six months after season one premiered, that the Twitter account for the show announced that Netflix hadn’t renewed it.
The show was well-liked by critics, and Netflix renewed its other original sketch series “I Think You Should Leave,” but fans were left mystified by the cancellation of “Astronomy Club: The Sketch Show.”
“Spinning Out” was one of the many 2020 Netflix originals to only get a single season.
Synopsis: “After a devastating fall threatens her competitive skating career, Kat Baker seizes an opportunity to pursue her Olympic dreams, but at the risk of losing everything. ‘Spinning Out’ follows Kat as she battles her personal demons and faces drama both on and off the ice.”
Why it was canceled: Just over a month after its premiere, “Spinning Out” was canceled. As Deadline reported at the time, the cancellation was “consistent with Netflix’s practice of evaluating a month worth of viewership data before making a renewal decision on bubble shows.”
“Spinning Out” was one of six Netflix originals to premiere in the first week of 2020.
“Messiah,” just like “Spinning Out,” was canceled shortly after its New Year’s Day premiere.
Synopsis: “When CIA officer Eva Geller uncovers information about a man gaining international attention through acts of public disruption, she begins an investigation into his origins.”
Why it was canceled: “Messiah” might have been one of the first Netflix shows to get canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
One source told the Hollywood Reporter that Netflix “didn’t feel confident about producing another season of the show, which features an international cast and filmed in several countries, given the current state of the world as it faces the coronavirus pandemic.”
“AJ and the Queen” was another one-and-done 2020 Netflix original.
Synopsis: “RuPaul stars in this outrageous series as a down-on-her-luck drag queen traveling across America in an RV with a tough-talking 10-year-old stowaway.”
Why it was canceled: The show’s creator and star RuPaul announced the cancellation of “AJ and the Queen” on Twitter. “End of the road for ‘AJ and The Queen,'” RuPaul wrote. “Netflix has decided to not extend our trip across America.”
Though no specific reason has reported, viewership for the show was likely too low for Netflix’s internal assessment to believe a second season was worth it.
“October Faction” was the second IDW Entertainment-produced series canceled in 2020.
Synopsis: “Monster hunters Fred and Deloris Allen hide their identities as members of a covert syndicate while their teenage kids, Geoff and Viv, are forced to live in a town trapped in the past.”
Why it was canceled: The decision to cancel this show was announced at the same time as “V Wars,” the other series produced by IDW Entertainment. The fantasy drama received poor ratings from critics, and never garnered a large fan base.
“Next in Fashion” was the first reality competition canceled by Netflix after just one season.
Synopsis: “‘Next In Fashion’ is a high-stakes competition series coming soon to Netflix featuring some of the world’s best and quietly innovative designers who compete for a chance to become the next big name in fashion.”
Why it was canceled: This was another quiet cancellation. The revelation that season two would not be made came when the show’s cohost Tan France (“Queer Eye”) mentioned the news in an interview with Variety.
“This is a one-season show, we don’t know what will happen in the future,” France told Variety.
“I Am Not Okay With This” was another COVID-19-related cancellation, despite having a second season ready to shoot.
Synopsis: “Angsty Syd navigates high school awkwardness, family drama and an unrequited crush on her best friend while trying to rein in her budding superpowers.”
Why it was canceled: In an interview with Insider, “I Am Not Okay With This” co-creator Jonathan Entwistle revealed that Netflix had already commissioned the writers’ room to prepare a second season of the show.
But when COVID-19 led to expensive logistics for filming, the streaming service reversed the decision and canceled the show. Read our full report on the details behind the show’s cancellation here.
“Teenage Bounty Hunters” was canceled after one season, despite favorable critics’ reviews.
Synopsis: “Rebelling against their buttoned-up Southern community, 16-year-old fraternal twin sisters Sterling and Blair Wesley team up with veteran bounty hunter Bowser Jenkins for an over-the-top adventure as they dive into the world of bail skipping baddies and suburban secrets while trying to navigate high school drama — love, sex, and study hall.”
Why it was canceled: Adding to the growing list of 2020 Netflix shows canceled after just one season, “Teenage Bounty Hunters” was axed just two months after its premiere.
Though Nielsen’s streaming ranking indicates the show was popular for at least one week in August, the series must not have met Netflix’s internal standards for viewership.
“Away” was another 2020 Netflix original to get just a single season.
Synopsis: “In the near future, a crewed spacecraft is sent to Mars. For this high-stakes mission, a team of elite astronauts are assembled from around the globe. They hail from the United States, Russia, China, India, and Great Britain. If all goes well, they will be away from the place they call home and the people they love for three years.”
Why it was canceled: Like with “Teenage Bounty Hunters,” the space-drama “Away” had solid viewership according to third-party analytics sites like Nielsen. But just over a month after its premiere, Netflix canceled the show.
Like so many other series, Netflix’s own internal system of evaluation seems to have led to the show’s abrupt ending.
“The Irregulars” was the first single-season show cancellation of 2021.
Synopsis: “Set in Victorian London, the series follows a gang of troubled street teens who are manipulated into solving crimes for the sinister Doctor Watson and his mysterious business partner, the elusive Sherlock Holmes. As the crimes take on a horrifying supernatural edge and a dark power emerges, it’ll be up to the Irregulars to come together to save not only London but the entire world.”
Why it was canceled: Deadline was the first publication to break the news of the show’s cancellation, and the report didn’t cite any known reason. Interestingly, “The Irregulars” did seem to have strong viewership for at least one week in April, according to Nielsen’s weekly US streaming charts. But that engagement clearly wasn’t enough for Netflix’s renewal formula.