While fans of Bridgerton, Cobra Kai, and several popular Netflix original shows will get to see new seasons of their favorite characters, the streaming platform has announced the cancelation of some other shows so far in 2021. The pandemic presented new opportunities for streaming services in the past year as movie theaters struggled to stay open under state guidelines, leading to a rise in competitors for Netflix. Yet, companies all across the movie and TV industry faced challenges such as budget cuts and filming postponements. This, plus Netflix’s tendency to make cuts and remove content from its platform, has led to the abrupt conclusion of some of its original programs.
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In 2020, Netflix canceled 20 major series, according to Refinery 29. Among the original shows that Netflix brought to an end during the pandemic include the popular supernatural show The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and the controversial series Insatiable. The streaming service also announced last year that several shows will conclude with the release of their upcoming seasons. These titles include some popular favorites like Ozark, Atypical, and The Crown, though The Crown will conclude after seasons 5 and 6.
While Netflix’s newest cancelations may come as a shock, and while many fans are still upset over last year’s announcements, the streaming platform has decided to renew some titles this year. From Selling Sunset to On My Block to Ginny and Georgia, several original Netflix shows have confirmed upcoming seasons. Some, however, will not be returning – and the streaming giant just made several of those announcements within a short time frame. Here is every original show that Netflix has canceled so far in 2021.
Perhaps the most surprising original show that Netflix canceled is The Irregulars, the British detective drama set in the Victorian era that had just one eight-episode season on the platform. The series was based on the Baker Street Irregulars from three of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes novels. During the show, the titular characters work for Dr. Watson to defend the city of London from supernatural forces while also trying to track down the elusive Holmes. Netflix announced on May 4, 2021 that a second season would not happen.
The Irregulars garnered a mighty fanbase and achieved some success in its short run on Netflix, thereby making its cancelation a confusing subject. The show managed to take the number one spot on Nielsen’s weekly Top 1o chart for original streaming shows, beating out The Falcon and The Winter Soldier for minutes streamed after Marvel’s new Disney+ miniseries held the top spot only one week prior to The Irregulars’ release. Some have speculated that the title of the series may have played a factor in its short-lived stint on Netflix as it doesn’t indicate anything about Baker Street or Sherlock Holmes lore. Though the exact reason for The Irregulars getting canceled is unclear, perhaps a decline in views after its initial release contributed to the decision.
On April 29, 2021, Netflix also officially canceled The Duchess, another one of its original British shows, after the first season. Created by and starring Katherine Ryan, the series centered on Ryan’s character as a chaotic mom who doesn’t know what she wants – especially whether or not she should have another child with her ex. Intended as a mix of a quirky comedy and a drama, the show did not do well with critics, with one reviewer for Variety dubbing it “a tasteless misfire” for the titular character’s “showy amorality.”
It’s likely that these negative reviews led to a decline in streaming, leading The Duchess to get the ax from Netflix. To be sure, Ryan spoke on an episode of Vicky Pattson’s The Secret To… podcast about the specific reasoning behind the show’s cancelation, saying that “[Netflix] didn’t want to make any more, not enough people watched it. I think something like 10 million people watched it in 28 days and that wasn’t enough.” Despite her heavy involvement in the project, Ryan revealed that she wasn’t too upset about it coming to an end. “I’m not terribly sad about it,” she told Pattson. “I feel like it’s a whole lot of work, a whole lot of time to make a sitcom. I was so grateful to able to make it, but I think it speaks for itself. I kind of like the way it ended.”
The Mexican drama Moncara is also coming to an end, though its creators didn’t receive any official news at first. The first season of Monarca premiered on Netflix in September 2019, and the second season was released over a year later on January 1, 2021. Creators of the series, including Osvaldo Benavides and Irene Azeual, had taken to Instagram in March to say their goodbyes when a return seemed unlikely, and the official announcement came through the Mexican culture and entertainment outlet Sensacine just a couple of days later. This came as a surprise considering the cliffhanger that concluded the last season.
La Révolution is a French-language drama on Netflix that blended supernatural elements with reimagined history, and unfortunately, the series got the chop from the streaming service. La Révolution was released in October 2020, and the plot centers on a devastating virus that invades the aristocracy and prompts its higher-up members to kill laypeople. While it was one of the biggest Netflix productions to come out of France, apparently it didn’t do well enough to make it to a second season.
The Last Kingdom (With One Upcoming Season)
While The Last Kingdom began as a BBC series in 2015, the show is now a product of Netflix, though the service recently announced that it will be coming to an end. This historical fiction series came to Netflix in 2018 and is based on The Saxton Stories novels by Bernard Cornwell. Set during the period of time when Danish rule was established in Jórvík and East Anglia, the storyline highlights the struggle between the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex and the incoming Vikings that continuously attack southern England.
Unlike other cancelations so far in 2021, The Last Kingdom is set to have one more season. The upcoming fifth season was announced in July 2020, and there were no plans to make that its final run until this year. While filming is currently in process in Hungary according to Deadline, the final ten episodes of the show do not have a specific release date just yet. The Last Kingdom received positive acclaim during its run on Netflix, and fans are no doubt eager to see how the story will wrap up.
Special (With One Upcoming Season)
Netflix is also removing a comedy show from its browsing selections. Special, the original short-form series which is based on the I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves memoir by Ryan O’Connell, will have a second and final season premiere on May 20, 2021. In addition to writing and executive producing, O’Connell stars as the titular character Ryan in Special, which tells the uplifting tale of a gay man with mild cerebral palsy seeking to reclaim his identity and transform his life. While the second season had been announced some time ago, the plans to cancel the show’s renewal after the new season’s release were a recent development. With a favorable Rotten Tomatoes score and generally positive reception, it’s unclear why Netflix chose to cancel Special.
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