Netflix Has Cancelled Another Solid Show After Just One Season

One would think there are only so many times the feeling of pain and betrayal can happen after a TV show gets cancelled after only a single season. And yet every year, that pain strikes throughout, seemingly more and more even, given the sheer number of new shows debuting annually. Netflix gets pegged quite a bit for axing first-season shows (among others), with notable examples such as Cowboy Bebop.The streaming service has done it again by cancelling the sci-fi horror series Archive 81, just two months after its promising debut.

Starring Mamoudou Athie and Dina Shihabi as time-crossed souls caught on two sides of a mysterious apartment building and the tenants therein, Archive 81 was based on the popular podcast of the same name. Even though the stories varied in various story-changing ways — such as the live-action series mostly trading audio cassettes for a re-embracing of the found-footage approach — there was still more than enough material to keep the super-creepy moments coming in future seasons, but Netflix put the brakes on those thoughts with its cancellation.  

The Rebecca Sonnenshine-created series did jump up to the higher spots in Netflix’s Top 10 rankings soon after debuting on January 14. Granted, it didn’t settle in and post up shop there until today, but the wave of viewers seemed to be sizeable enough. Not that there seems to be any particular science known to laymen about how long things need to do well in the Top 10 for them to move on. Nor how many people are being accounted for in that Top 10 on a daily basis. Perhaps Netflix was just going through a quiet phase from mid-to-late January. Whatever the case may be, it’s a bummer. 

Especially since there were more than enough narrative elements to continue Archive 81 regardless of whether or not the podcast served as a guide. While I won't get into spoilers about the bonkers finale, since it's still worth watching even without a second season, I can safely say there were mysteries left to waiting to be explained with future episodes, and other mysteries that hadn't even been fully developed yet outside of clues left here and there.

Elsewhere this year, Netflix cancelled the young-adult series The Baby-Sitters Club, Katee Sackhoff's sci-fi drama Another Life, and the taco shop dramedy Gentefied, with all three ending after their second seasons had aired. Cooking with Paris was not so lucky, as it also faced a cancellation after its lone season aired. And it seems like fans might not get to see more from Nailed It! outside of only the most recently filmed episodes, since it shut down indefinitely due to issues behind-the-scenes.

Archive 81 can currently be streamed in its one-season entirety on Netflix, but here’s hoping some other service or network will swoop in and save this series before everyone involved moves on to other projects. Until then, check out other shows to fill the Archive 81 void

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.