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Recently it seems like Netflix has been on a war path of cancellation. It seems rather bold and unpredictable for a streaming service that was almost sure to hand out a season 2 to all original content. Netflix lately seems to be off course with both their decisions of renewal and cancellations. I will hereby examine a few cases.
'The Good Cop'
This one garnered mix reviews but it seemed like a stable bet to secure itself a second season thanks to some solid lead actors and a cool concept. Perhaps negative word of mouth hurt this more than anything else which left another talented cast looking for work. This is another case where seeing the viewership numbers compared to other shows would have given potential viewers a chance to realize sooner this cop caper was a goner.
Perhaps this one is a bit of a stretch because it had three seasons and complaining about a series that actually had a send-off seems greedy but this was a great show that made its own mistakes through the narrative but Netflix had the ability to maybe recreate it with new writers and a new focus. I enjoyed the cast and will always follow Kyle Chandler's career.
This show is the funniest and most creative show in years so I am grateful for a second season and both heartbroken that it is over. Comedic and well timed, it allowed for the immature nature of the case to be overshadowed by the amazing cinematography. This led to the immature jokes being even better and even easier to laugh at. Thanks to an incredible cast and crew for two amazing seasons and it is definitely a show that deserved at least two to three more compelling mysteries and even more comedy.
This one, I believe, came down to viewership not reaching the numbers execs were expecting. Led by a very talented Naomi Watts, the narrative was a bit cramped for timing and lead to some pacing issues but these are all issues that seemed easily fixable given more time to create a more flowing narrative.
'Iron Fist' and 'Luke Cage'
These two are going to be coupled together because they suffered the same fate. I believe these are the first of many cancellations coming for Marvel and Netflix and I believe it happened because of oversaturation of comic book characters. These shows were hints that even the lesser known characters were being given the chance to shine but their cancellations reaffirm that these worlds are so large we as audiences may not have the time for all they offer us. It is a setback but definitely not a deterrent for future characters to be adapted. Perhaps this news would not have hurt so bad had they been given one more season each to wrap things up properly. Marvel is going to be front and center of the new Disney Plus service so it seems like this move was made just to assert some sort of creative dominance.
These are examples that come to mind when realizing Netflix is not the stable force in the world of original content anymore. It seemed destined that a show that garnered mediocre reviews and favorable audience approval ratings would receive a second, maybe even a third season in some cases. It seems even more than ever TV is a throwaway world where people's visions can be ended in an instant because it had 100K less viewers than a show of similar structure. Personally the world of TV audiences has always been baffling. A show can score 10 plus million viewers while another can score 4.5 and the latter will receive a renewal because of the age group of the audiences.
Netflix has become a sinking ship for television series, I find. Most of the quality programs they have had ended up being 5 or fewer seasons (even those bought from another network only seem to last a few seasons at best). As a viewer, it tends to lead to me scrolling through various titles, unwilling to take a chance on a rookie show for fear I will binge watch the first seven or eight episodes only to learn three days later it has been cancelled without a real reason given to the fan base it accumulated in such a small run.
There are two quick fixes that come to mind. Release the first week viewership numbers within 30 days so audiences can get a general feel for the safety of a particular series or option 2, which is the more risky move: Give a new show a two-season greenlight (which was done for the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) from the get-go without worry for audience numbers. Those are my two answers on the spot so if Netflix execs have a better solution I am one who is all for hearing it and seeing it implemented sooner rather than later.
This is the first instance since the day I opened my 30 day free trial that I am debating cancelling my Netflix account. In the past three months, the most activity my account has seen has been Paw Patrol and Trolls: the Beat Goes On. With a massive amount of shows seemingly always ready to be chopped at any instance and the price of Netflix having steadily increased annually since I opened my account, I can definitely see a future where I change over to Disney Plus and other more niche streaming services.