In recent years, reality TV producers have taken strides in introducing a "really real" reality to the primetime schedule, although most implode soon into their runs. (Remember how big Utopia was supposed to be?) The latest of these midhandled disaster projects is the British series Eden, in which a group of people were tasked with spending a legitimately assistance-free year in the Scottish wilderness. This week, the final remaining contestants at last left, one year after arriving, and you know what they found out? The network had only aired four episodes last summer, without a real plan for airing more.
Here's the quick rundown for this non-success story: last March, 23 contestants ventured out to the Ardnamurchan peninsula in Inverness-shire, Scotland with the single goal of building a community. It was an area picked specifically because of how cut off it was from the rest of society, and that reclusive style of living kept everyone out there unaware of what the U.K.'s Channel 4 had planned for airing the series, which basically came down to: Air four episodes over the summer and then just hold off and not really say anything else about it until someone else brings it up, like maybe all of the miserable people that are still out there. Not the best plan.
Only ten contestants were left to exit the Scottish wilderness, as the other 13 had all previously quit the competition for one reason or another, including hunger, boredom, anger, in-fighting and more. (Some left simply because it wasn't anything like what they envisioned, which is so very understandable.) The last episode aired on August 8, 2016, when some were still in the process of leaving, and then nothing since. It was never cancelled, though Channel 4 did confirm to The Press and Journal that Eden had "drawn to a close," and that no date was determined for when more episodes would air, but that they would.
I'm still having trouble coming to grips with all things Eden, as it sounds like a situation that would have occurred in the first decade in which television existed, rather than in 2016-2017. Was there really no plan to do something with any of these people when they came out? Was there a prize in a box somewhere? A free shower at least? The way the locals were talking, they won out more by having the show end, since it was nowhere near the tourist-bringing win that was planned.
So, we don't know if or when the world will ever get to see more from Eden, although it's easy to assume that all the horror stories that come out of those victims will be ample fodder for some ridiculously wild footage. Maybe Channel 4 will skip all the boring shit and skip right to the cannibalism. Or, you know, whatever. While waiting, head to our midseason premiere schedule and our summer TV guide to see what's coming to the small screen here in the U.S.