There was a long stretch of time when Netflix was the greener pastures of television productions. Really, it still is, but things are a changing. For a while, no shows got cancelled. These days, it’s still rare that a show gets cancelled once they’ve been started on the streaming platform. But, we should expect more soon. According to Netflix’s CEO, Reid Hastings, the platform’s cancel rate is too low. This statement has several meanings. For one, he believes that the cancel rate is bound to increase, which will force them to cancel more shows. He also wants his team to take more chances with the material that gets green-lit. Yes, the other side of that coin means more failures and more cancelled shows, but it also means bigger successes.
Lately, we’ve seen some Netflix shows go down. This is a new turn for the company, but we should start to get used to it. At this point, seven shows have gone down. We wanted to explore the reasons why these seven shows in particular got the axe. There are also some shows that haven’t been renewed that we’ll discuss. Lastly, we want to look at which shows are next in line for cancellation. We know the axe is going to fall again and probably soon. We listed the six shows that we’re sure are next. Sure, we could be wrong on these predictions, but we’d be surprised if any of these shows last for their entire runs. If you’re a fan of one of the shows on this list, any reasons for it being cancelled would sound ridiculous. Depending on your perspective, the reasons for cancellation may be ridiculous. Or, the reason the show was cancelled was because it was ridiculous. Here are 7 Netflix Shows Cancelled for Ridiculous Reasons and 8 Others That Are Next.
15. Marco Polo – Cancelled
After a first season that was plagued with poor reviews, Marco Polo had a very steep uphill climb to try and make it work on Netflix. When the show was greenlit, everyone expected big things. Harvey Weinstein, one of the producers, bragged that the show would be “one of the most expensive shows ever done for pay TV.” It was. The budget was incredible. Yet, after spending at least $180 million over two years and shooting all over the world, Marco Polo was struck down after two disappointing seasons. Actually, most who stuck around for season two were more pleased, but the show had lost too many viewers by that point. Truthfully, the show was just boring. The most successful shows in the historical drama realm are successful because they infuse a strong and powerful narrative into a historical setting. Marco Polo seemed intent on focusing on history and forgot about story and character. The result was one of the most dreadful efforts put forth by Netflix.
14. Bloodline – Cancelled
Even though Netflix’s Bloodline was said to have “concluded” after three seasons as opposed to being cancelled, this show was cancelled. Let’s get that clear. This one was a surprise to many, especially since the first season was well-received by audiences and critics. Hell, the show was nominated for numerous awards. It was also the first cancellation by Netflix of a show that was fairly prestigious. So, what happened? Well, this one, like many others on this list, came down to money. The first season came out and looked great. People loved the style and the drama. If it could have kept this up, the huge price tag, reportedly between $7 million and $8.5 million per episode, would have been manageable. But, Bloodline couldn’t keep it up. At least, the writers couldn’t. The second season was a shell of the first, and the third, the series’ last, is even worse. If you consider that Netflix shelled out about $90 million to $110 million for the first season and $70 million to $85 million for the ten-episode second season, that means that the three-season run cost Netflix about a quarter of a billion dollars. That’s insanity for a show that had a mediocre audience and was clearly fading from one season to the next. Don’t cry because it’s gone, smile that it was even greenlit in the first place.
13. Hemlock Grove – First Show Cancelled By Netflix
If you never sat down and watched Hemlock Grove, you probably never will now. The show is one of the strangest produced by Netflix and the showrunners seemed intent on trying to make each successive episode weirder. In the end, this decision led to Hemlock Grove being the first show cancelled by Netflix. Let’s just say it had it coming. Everything from the performances to the narrative were questionable in this mess of a show. Since Netflix never does anything the standard way, Hemlock Grove’s cancellation was announced in the same breath that the show’s third season renewal was announced. Since the show had plans for at least a fourth season, the few final episodes of Hemlock Grove were some of the most rushed and asinine television shows one could watch. Unlike many others on this list, Hemlock Grove wasn’t cancelled because of money. It was cancelled because Netflix wanted to wash its hands off a completely terrible TV show.
12. Lilyhammer – Second Show Ever Cancelled By Netflix
The second show ever cancelled by Netflix was the Norwegian-American show about a gangster starting a new life in Lillehammer, Norway, Lilyhammer. In a way, the story of Lilyhammer is the TV version of John Wick. The first season of this show came out and it was an enormous success in Norway. One-fifth of that country’s population tuned in and watched the premiere, with many binge-watching the entire season straight through. The second season was greenlit. It came and went. It was well-received, but fans began to notice that it was losing momentum. The third season was a bust. Although we can’t confirm the numbers, it appears that the third season viewership was considerably lower than the previous two. It was here that Netflix cut ties. For many, this all but confirmed that Netflix only cares about the North American audiences. For others, it was expected.
11. Longmire – Cancelled
Longmire is a strange show that most people thought would be cancelled a long time ago. In fact, it was cancelled a long time ago. It was Netflix that picked it up from A&E and revived it after it was cancelled. So, no, no one was really surprised that this small show was cancelled again by Netflix. It was very slow-paced and angled for a small niche market. It probably cost peanuts to make, so it wasn’t about money. To be completely frank, the cancellation of Longmire after six long seasons was probably more about just putting it out of its misery. The show is not nearly as bad as we’re making it seem right now, and we apologize to the 13 fans who loved it, but this show was never a must-watch either. Netflix seems to be intent on creating cutting-edge content, and not yeah, this is alright content.
10. Sense8 – Cancelled
Since we don’t get to see a detailed report of Netflix’s viewership numbers, we can never be sure about who watches what. By the loud outcry of fans that voiced their displeasure with the recent cancelling of Sense8, it would seem that there are plenty of viewers, but that’s not what Netflix makes it sound like. Call it ridiculous all you like, but the real reason that Sense8 was cancelled is because it was a niche show with an enormous cost. It’s been reported that it cost $9 million per episode to make. That’s insane. Plus, if you’ve ever seen Sense8, you would know that the first season dangerously borders on being incomprehensible and mind-numbingly boring. While this show is one that would really benefit from multiple seasons, it lost far too many viewers between the start of the first season and the second season to be ever be considered worth the exorbitant price tag. Just to be clear, we’re not saying that the show’s cancellation is ridiculous. We’re saying the reason it was cancelled—the cost—was ridiculous.
9. The Get Down – Cancelled
Much like Sense8, Baz Luhrmann‘s The Get Down was axed because it had a ridiculous budget. Estimated at around $12 million per episode, the shooting budget for this show is something usually set aside for major shows with incredible special effects. The budget for Game of Thrones season six, for example, was roughly $10 million per episode. The Get Down was a musical drama. Sure, it was incredibly stylish and vibrant, and, at times, it’s almost brilliant. But again, like Sense8, it’s a mess. It’s narrative bounds all over the place, and, even aided by binge-watching, this is troubling for audiences. There’s no doubt that if the production costs were a fraction of what they were in reality, this show would find a suitable audience and thrive. At the ridiculous price tag of $12 million an episode, this show would need to be one of the most popular on television to make it worthwhile for any business.
8. Between – Prediction: Soon To Be Cancelled
In Canada, Between is just a normal show, but outside, it’s presented as a Netflix Original. After the first strange season, interest waned completely and utterly for Between. As with the other shows, we don’t have precise numbers; but it’s not hard to see that no one watched the second season after such a disastrous start. Still, at this point, Between hasn’t technically been cancelled. It just hasn’t been picked up for a third season yet. If we were betting folks, we would put all our money on the notion that if it does get another season, it’ll be its last. The reason for this is simple: Between is far too focused on concept and not focused enough on content. While they may have started with a good idea, the showrunners were unable to flesh it out with anything resembling quality.
7. Pompidou – Prediction: Soon To Be Cancelled
Pompidou may not be cancelled, but it certainly isn’t not cancelled. There’s probably an easier way to say that. Either way, Pompidou was pawned off on audiences as a Netflix Original even after it was aired on BBC Two. It bombed on BBC Two, and when it came to Netflix, it bombed there as well. Known as the lowest rated original series on Netflix, Pompidou may be the least funny comedy show on television in the last few years. If you’re looking for a ridiculous reason why Netflix cancelled it, look no further than the first episode. What in the world is going on in this world that a show like this can get by test audiences? Nothing could be less funny than Pompidou. Nothing.
6. Iron Fist – Prediction: Cancelled After Second Season
It would shock us greatly if Iron Fist was actually cancelled outright. That would require a lot of effort from Netflix, so we’re going to suggest something else. While the other shows in the Defenders series will likely get several independent seasons, we think that Iron Fist will only get two. Even now, the second season for Iron Fist hasn’t been greenlit, but we’re certain the announcement will come soon. The show will get a second season. It will be better than the first, which will be easy considering that the first was one of the worst seasons in Netflix history. But, it won’t be enough to make a third season make sense. There’s just too many good shows on television, Netflix included, for people to waste time watching bad shows too.
5. Real Rob – Prediction: Cancelled After Second Season
The second season of Real Rob has been greenlit, and here we are talking about how it will be cancelled. Written by, directed by, and starring Rob Schneider, this show is one that doesn’t seem to know who it’s made for. Well, actually, it does know who it’s for and that’s part of the problem. Schneider said of the show, “Like my time on Saturday Night Live, we want to make a show that makes ourselves and our friends laugh, and a show that we would want to watch.” Well, we hope you have a lot of friends, Schneider, because the show isn’t making the average TV fan laugh. This sitcom about Schneider’s life is exactly what we pictured it would be—full of stereotypes and reused bits from other shows. Netflix giving this a second kick at the can was a surprise. But after that first season, it will need a miracle second season to have any hope of surviving beyond that.
4. Flaked – Prediction: Soon To Be Cancelled
We were shocked that Will Arnett‘s comedy, Flaked, got a second season. It is likely that the only reason it did was because it’s Arnett’s passion project, and he’s done well for the network. It’s also a pretty low-cost vehicle. Still, it wasn’t close to a critical darling and barely anyone watches it. It’s a show that speaks to a very, very specific audience. Everyone else feels like an outsider and that’s not a comforting feeling. Of course, the second season could see the show really hit its stride. But, at this point, this is probably just a courtesy season for Arnett.
3. Marseille – Prediction: Cancelled After Second Season
So far, one of the common elements to Netflix’s cancellations is simple to understand. If the show has a big budget and big stars, it better also have a big audience. Well, the French political drama, Marseille, has two of those things. While we don’t have the numbers, it’s clear that Marseille costs a lot to make. It has a big-name cast and looks stunning. But critics hate it, and it’s a French political drama. Niche markets are nice when your show is inexpensive, but they don’t work when your budget is through the roof. Though Netflix has already given this one a second season, we can all but forget about any plans to watch a third at this rate.
2. Girlboss – Prediction: Soon To Be Cancelled
At this point in the life of the Netflix comedy Girlboss, it’s anyone’s guess how long the series will get. It certainly doesn’t look very good for it. After the first season, critics and audiences were left perplexed. The comedy has its funny moments, but the majority of the show is tough to watch because the protagonist is incredibly selfish, and the show seems totally unaware of it. The worst part of the show’s confusion is that it clearly thinks this lead, Sophia, is taking control in the name of feminism when she’s actually just rude and obnoxious. While the showrunners are hoping hard for multiple seasons, crossing as many fingers and toes as they have, this one will likely be chopped off at the head shortly.
1. Buddy Thunderstruck – Prediction: Soon To Be Cancelled
To be completely honest, this show is kind of fun to watch. The problem is, Buddy Thunderstruck, the stop-motion comedy doesn’t appeal to the masses. It wouldn’t be wise to bet against the animation team who does Robot Chicken, but it’s expensive and involved process to make this type of show. As it stands right now, Buddy Thunderstruck (think Talladega Nights for kids) seems to be caught in between in terms of audiences. It might be something that parents can watch with older kids, but what kind of parents are looking for a show to watch with older kids and vice versa anyway? We expect that this show will get a second season, but it’s hard for us to believe it will go any further than that.