19 of the Best Shows Cancelled in 2021 (and Where They Might Go Next)

19 of the Best Shows Cancelled in 2021 (and Where They Might Go Next)
Screenshot: High Maintenance/HBO

We currently have more broadcast and cable networks and streaming services that any one person or household or possibly small village could possibly watch, and all of them are desperate for content. That means that shows come and go faster than they used to, but it also means there’s more hope than ever that your cancelled favourite might find a new home.

Just because a show has disappeared from one network or service doesn’t mean it won’t soon reappear somewhere else. And some of the best and most beloved shows that ended, switched networks, got cancelled, or announced end dates in 2021 aren’t truly dead — some have already announced new homes, some still have episodes yet to air, and some have teased revivals. Let’s take a look at what’s next for some of the best shows that delivered the bad news over the past 12 months.

Absentia (2017 — 2020)

Status: Cancelled in absentia.

Stana Katic played FBI Special Agent Emily Byrne, who disappeared six years prior to the start of the series before turning up in a remote cabin with little memory of her time away. Though the last episode aired in 2020, Amazon just got around to confirming its cancellation in May, and it looks like it’s done for good. Nevertheless, the season/series finale wrapped up most of the show’s ongoing storylines, so there’s no reason not to check in with the show if the premise intrigues you.

Where to stream: Prime Video

All Rise (2019 — )

Status: Change of venue, from CBS to OWN.

Cancelled by CBS in May, this legal drama starring Simone Missick was picked up by OWN for a third season, set to premiere in 2022.

Where to stream: Foxtel Go.

American Gods (2017 — 2021)

Status: Gods is dead (short of a miracle).

After a heavenly first season, Gods stumbled under a series of creative shake-ups and budget cuts. Having largely righted itself by the end of the third season that ended in a massive cliffhanger…the show was cancelled by Starz. Though Neil Gaiman seemed confident about a revival back in March, there hasn’t been much chatter about a continuation since. Given that all the buzz now is about the forthcoming adaptation of the author’s Sandman on Netflix…it’s not looking great. But! The cast and creatives still have some hope, so we ought not give up our belief in them quite yet. You know where that leads.

Where to stream: Amazon Prime

Animal Kingdom (2016 — 2022)

Status: Officially done, but not for another season.

Oscar fave Ellen Barkin heads up a (literal) crime family in this popular TNT drama. The fifth season ended in October, but, back in January, the show was renewed for a sixth and final season. No airdate for that has been announced yet.

Where to stream: Netflix

Arthur (1996 — 2022)

Status: On his way out the door.

Let’s pour one out for Arthur, the charming aardvark protagonist of the second-longest running animated series in American TV history. In July, it was announced that the upcoming 25th season would be the little guy’s last. Still, executive producer Carol Greenwald has promised to continue Arthur in some other format, so we probably haven’t seen the last of him. :::clenches fist:::

Where to stream: ABC iView

Atypical (2017 — 2021)

Status: Done. (Typical.)

The popular comedy-drama about Sam Gardner (Keir Gilchrist), a teenager on the autism spectrum, ended back in July when its fourth season dropped. This wasn’t an abrupt cancellation, at least, so the last episode was a true finale.

Where to stream: Netflix

Better Call Saul (2015 — 2022)

Status: Ending on its own terms in 2022.

Better Call Saul has been a rare instance of a spin-off that’s approximately as popular as its beloved parent series…and, following its conclusion next year, BCS will have run for a year longer than Breaking Bad managed to. Given that track record (and the success of the El Camino spin-off movie), I won’t be surprised if there are further dives into Vince Gilligan’s sordid universe in the future — but, for now, this is it.

Where to stream: Stan

Black-ish (2014 — 2022)

Status: Done-ish.

There’s been a bit of a contraction in the -ish universe, with Mixed-ish having been cancelled back in May after two seasons, and the announcement that the parent series will end after an impressive eight seasons — the final one beginning in January. Meanwhile, Grown-ish is in the middle of its fourth season over on Freeform, and has been doing pretty well for that network. No word on a season five as yet, but it could well wind up being the last -ish standing.

Where to stream: Disney+

Brittania (2018 — )

Status: Moving to Epix in 2022.

The historical drama (set around the Roman invasion of Britain circa 43 CE) is an international co-production that’s been streaming on Prime Video in the US. The show moves to EPIX for its third season, with the premiere date currently set for Jan. 16, 2022.

Where to stream: Stan

Condor (2018 — )

Status: Moved to Epix.

The well-received, if lesser-known, spy drama based on James Grady’s Six Days of the Condor (and/or the 1975 film adaptation, Three Days of the Condor) aired on the now-defunct Audience, but moved to EPIX for its second season, which aired earlier this year. No news yet about a third season, however.

Where to stream: Stan

Conan (2010 — 2021)

Status: Ended, technically, but also moving to HBO Max.

Though Conan O’Brien’s long-running nightly TBS show concluded back in June, Conan himself is heading over to HBO Max for a weekly show sometime next year. This will be the fourth big show for Conan and, though his run has occasionally been a rocky one, he always seems to come out just fine.

Evil (2019 — )

Status: Moved from CBS to Paramount+.

It’s sort of X-Files meets the Exorcist, with a forensic psychologist (Katja Herbers), a seminarian (Mike Coulter), and a tech genius (Aasif Mandvi) investigating a series of supernatural incidents. The show started on the CBS broadcast channel before moving this year to the company’s streaming platform, Paramount+. It was renewed for a third season this past summer.

Where to stream: Stan

Genius (2017 — )

Status: A lateral move from NatGeo to Disney+

The National Geographic anthology series dramatizes the life of a different prodigy each season (Albert Einstein, Pablo Picasso, and Aretha Franklin so far). The fourth season, announced late last year, will focus on Martin Luther King, Jr., and move from Nat Geo to the Disney+ streaming service. (It’s all the same company.)

Where to stream: Disney+.

Grace and Frankie (2015 — 2022)

Status: Ending in 2022

It’s been a team-up for the ages, but the Lily Tomlin/Jane Fonda comedy is ending after a very impressive seven seasons. Half of that final year has already aired, but there are still 12 episodes to go, with a planned drop sometime (presumably early) next year.

Where to stream: Netflix

High Maintenance (2012 — 2020)

Status: Kicked.

A stoner comedy-drama with impressive heart, High Maintenance was too good for us. It ended its four-season run last year, but HBO only got around to officially cancelling it in mid-2021. It makes sense that a show built around an affable drug dealer going into a bunch of strangers’ homes feels different amid the pandemic, but we were hoping this one was just one a break. Alas. Given its start as a web series, though, it doesn’t seem impossible that The Guy will get back into the business someday, one way or another.

Where to stream: Foxtel Go

Pennyworth (2019 — )

Status: Move from Epix to HBO Max.

Thank God. More Batman content. As Epix has picked up a couple of shows cancelled by other networks (Britannia, Condor), it seems they needed to make some room, and has dropped Pennyworth (about the early days of faithful Bat-butler Alfred). No worries: It will join the rest of the DC shows on HBO Max for a third season, release date TBD.

Where to stream: Foxtel Go

This Is Us (2016 — 2022)

Status: Moving on.

It was announced in May that the buzzy, dramatic series is concluding with its sixth season, which will air on NBC beginning Jan. 4. A couple of series stars have teased the idea of a spin-off, and given the show’s popularity, that idea doesn’t seem far-fetched in the least. There’s nothing beyond speculation at this point, but I’d almost be surprised if we didn’t get more time with at least some of these characters.

Where to stream: Prime Video

Warrior (2019 — )

Status: Moving from Cinemax to HBO Max

The second season of the martial arts series got in just under the wire: It was Cinemax’s final series before the network gave up on original shows altogether. Nevertheless, it found a new home over on HBO Max with a third season on the way. The premiere date has yet to be announced, but the two existing seasons can be found on HBO Max already.

Where to stream: Foxtel Go

Surprise Revival: Party Down (2009 — 2010, 2022 )

Status: Cancelled (in 2010), returning next year

Capping off with an unexpected return: Party Down (justifiably) became an Arrested Development-style cult classic following its quick two-season run over a decade ago. Just this week, Starz announced a six-episode revival with original stars Adam Scott, Jane Lynch, Ken Marino, Martin Starr, Ryan Hansen, and Megan Mullally returning. No Lizzy Caplan though, alas — hopefully it will still feel like a party without her.

Where to stream: Stan

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