If I had a dollar for every time my wife and I discovered a great show on Netflix only to discover it was cancelled after one or two seasons, we would be stupidly rich.
Netflix recently revealed they’re losing subscribers. You probably already knew this because you’ve either cancelled your Netflix account, considered cancelling it or seen the numerous news stories about their untimely demise.
What some people don’t realise is Netflix, like other companies, pulled out of the Russian market over its unwarranted invasion of Ukraine and lost 700,000 paid subscribers. Between April and July, Netflix lost one million subscribers.
While losing subscribers is significant because it’s the first time since 2011 they have lost subscribers, it’s hardly the doomsday sky is falling scenario that people feared before the figures were released. Losses stemmed thanks to shows like Stranger Things.
One of Netflix’s biggest problems is its cancellation fetish.
Numerous shows have not given the appropriate amount of time to breathe on the platform. Despite being one of the best Marvel TV show adaptions to date, I am still quite upset over the fact that they cancelled The Punisher. Nobody else will ever play Frank Castle as Jon Bernthal did.
Despite making it to an impressive three seasons, Daredevil didn’t fare much better. But it was starting to get good and had a great cast too. Allegedly, Daredevil has been revived and coming to Disney+. Whether it retains the essence of the Netflix series will remain to be seen.
Perhaps the cruellest cancellation of them all was The OA. Allegedly the fanbase wasn’t that big, but from the backlash I saw online when it was cancelled, it seemed pretty big. The fanbase was highly-dedicated, even creating a change.org petition to try and save it, alongside a hashtag and other fruitless efforts.
Another show cancelled after only one season was Messiah. A TV series about a man claiming to be Jesus, who could do things like walk on water. It was a thrilling show that had the potential to grow into something much bigger. It was allegedly cancelled because of the international cast and different countries it was shot in because of the pandemic.
Another sad cancellation is Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Growing up, like many my age, the nineties version of Sabrina The Teenage Witch was a staple watch. The Netflix version was darker, had a great spin on Sabrina, also well cast. It made it to an impressive four seasons before being cancelled, a lifetime on Netflix.
Like The Punisher cancellation, another TV show called Altered Carbon which was set 360 years into the future where people could go into new bodies called skins, was compelling television and cancelled before its prime. Netflix seems to have a thing for cancelling its good sci-fi shows.
If Netflix can’t even commit to its content outside of Stranger Things, how can it expect its customers to commit to a subscription? There has to be a term for it when you find a great new show and discover it’s cancelled, on hiatus, or after you become invested gets cancelled.
While some continue to predict the fall of Netflix, I think they will be fine in the long term. Netflix has survived this long. I am sure they will work things out. Although, in the current economic climate, Netflix might want to think carefully about how they approach future content and retain subscribers.