9 Recent Shows That Ended Before Their Time

9 Recent Shows That Ended Before Their Time
Screenshot: Aisha Jordan

The lifespan of the television show is dwindling. The rise of original programming from streaming services has shifted the TV landscape, making room for more shows with fewer episodes per season, and larger content-driven platforms like Netflix can quickly move on to the next thing before we, the TV-loving public, are truly ready.

Take Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, which was only approaching the heights of its narrative when Netflix decided the teen witch drama could wrap it up in four, thanks. The pandemic has affected production dates worldwide, too, leading more shows to early ends: After a production delay for GLOW, for example, Netflix called it quits on the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling dramedy altogether. Television shows like Superstore and Claws will be also soon be gone before their time, leaving behind stellar seasons we can, at least, watch on repeat. Here are some of the recent shows ending or cancelled in 2020, so you can make sure to say a proper goodbye.

Superstore

The charming television series from NBC about employees at a chain retail store in St. Louis mixes modern with classic sitcom style. This unassuming comedy, originally starring starring America Ferrera and Ben Feldman, captivated audiences who could relate a little too well to the struggles of a customer service job. In the wake of Ferrera’s departure the show was recently cancelled, meaning the remaining episodes (which have incorporated the pandemic into the plot) are worth savouring that much more.

GLOW

It was a sudden goodbye for the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. Inspired by true events, this comedy-drama about the creation of the first all-women’s wrestling television program premiered on Netflix in the summer of 2017 and drew widespread critical acclaim. The show had just begun filming season four when the pandemic forced production to cease. Ultimately, Netflix decided to stop production of the planned final season for good. This cancellation hurts like a bodyslam.

Claws

After three short years, TNT and creators of the hit show Claws will finish the series off with season four this year. Like someone dropped Breaking Bad into the steamy South Florida heat, the show follows Desna (Niecy Nash) and her friends as they run a drug ring through their Palmetto, Florida nail salon. A fan favourite, this show is definitely quitting while it’s ahead.

Black Lightning

There was great excitement for the CWs first Black superhero lead when Black Lightning premiered back in 2017. The show chronicles the story of the DC comics character’s return to crime-fighting after an extended hiatus. Unfortunately, the show could not stick around as long as its superhero companions; the CW did not renew it for a fifth season. You can watch three seasons on Netflix now; the final season will air in February of 2021.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

After absorbing the crushing footage of the Spellman home being torn down, fans knew for sure the teen horror show was not coming back. Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, which offers a more mature take on the popular comics about half-mortal/half-witch Sabrina Spellman, caught on quickly, but its dark magic was not strong enough to survive the revolving door of cancellations from Netflix. The fourth and final season will be available to binge on December 31.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance

The 1982 cult classic film The Dark Crystal received an unlikely prequel last year in the form of the lavish Netflix original series The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance. The show’s logline promised an epic dive into the film’s backstory, revealing how the gentle Gelflings first launched a rebellion against the evil Skeksis, and the series delivered in the form of elaborate (and reportedly very expensive) puppetry and special effects. Unfortunately, Netflix couldn’t justify continuing at that expense, ending the show after just one season. But all hope is not lost: “We know fans are eager to learn how this chapter of The Dark Crystal saga concludes and we’ll look for ways to tell that story in the future,” says executive producer Lisa Henson in a report by Variety.

Drunk History

For more than seven years, celebrities have been getting drunk and retelling (to the best of their ability) some of the greatest moments in history, and watching them do it has been massively entertaining. The hilarious reenactments first appeared on the comedy site Funny or Die before being picked up by Comedy Central. Although the network has cancelled the series, creator Derek Waters told Deadline it could yet find a new home. As long as people are willing to get drunk and tell stories on camera, Drunk History should continue to exist, and hopefully, it will.

Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj

To great shock this year, Netflix also cancelled the informational news comedy Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj. Hasan Minhaj delivered fact-based news in a relatable way, with humour and depth, tackling corruption in international governments, the realities of race and inequality, and the spread of (and government response to) the coronavirus pandemic. Although fans appreciated the program, it couldn’t evade the Netflix cancellation wave.

The Venture Bros.

After an intermittent 17-year run, The Venture Bros. seemed like it could go on forever on late-night’s Adult Swim, but it was cancelled. The satirical adult cartoon featured young crime fighters Hank and Dean and their team as they fend off a myriad of super villains. The cancellation came as a shock; the creators were prepping for season eight when the hammer fell, CNN reported. Fingers crossed the show finds a new home.

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