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The shockwaves are continuing to reverberate following Netflix's decision to cancel the popular comic book drama Daredevil. One of the show's writers, Tamara Becher-Wilkinson, has opened up on why she thought the show definitely wasn't getting cancelled, saying she believed it was just too big. Becher-Wilkinson explained:
The reviews were so overwhelmingly positive that I thought there was no way they would cancel it. I don't know how well it does on Netflix or anything like that...[but] it was surprising to me they would cancel something that was so well received. I thought it was too big to fail.
This makes complete sense, and many Daredevil fans likely felt the same way that the writer did. The superhero drama kicked off the Marvel universe on Netflix in critically acclaimed ways. It has also maintained a devoted following and, as Tamara Becher-Wilkinson points out to iO9, a popular reception that peaked with Season 3. That puts Daredevil in a rarified category, but unfortunately, that fantastic reception did not end up saving it for Season 4..
Tamara Becher-Wilkinson also took fans behind-the-scenes of the moments leading up to Netflix revealing the execs' fateful decision. As it turns out, she was actually in the midst of blocking out a writing schedule for Season 4 when she got the bad news. Another sign that everything was business as usual for Daredevil's crew when the shocking cancellation came down. Becher-Wilkinson set up the scene, saying:
[Showrunner Erik Oleson] got a call asking him to go down to see the Marvel executives, and I jokingly went 'Ooooooooh,' like a third grader does when someone gets called to a principal's office. Then, he waited for everybody to gather back in the writers' room and he said, 'Netflix has decided not to move forward with Season 4.' And that's all I remember, you know. I kind of missed the details because I was, like, so surprised.
Was it the series' ratings that did Daredevil in? If so, the streaming giant is not going public with it. With Netflix's policy of not revealing ratings data, it is always tough to know. Since its debut in 2015, Daredevil has remained a high-profile series for Netflix, which now amasses new originals regularly
What is sad is that the writers put a lot of effort into creating the outline for Season 4, and fans are unlikely to ever see it. At least Daredevil left things off in an upbeat place for its central heroes, but where they would have gone from there would have been interesting to explore.
The shocking announcement that Netflix would not be renewing Daredevil clearly left many surprised. Marvel executives were also stunned by the announcement, per Daredevil producer Sam Ernst. Despite the pre-existing cancellations of Iron Fist and Luke Cage, two indicators that the Marvel universe was in trouble at Netflix, people still had faith that Daredevil was the most untouchable of the various shows. It is clear that The Punisher and Jessica Jones have cause to worry about their fate.
The "why" factor is something that seems to be missing from the equation in all of the Marvel cancellations. In its announcement, Netflix mentioned the character of Daredevil living on in future Marvel projects, which is great, assuming Charlie Cox remains involved. However, the reason for limiting Daredevil's future remained unvoiced.
If it is possible for the show to continue elsewhere, possibly on the upcoming Disney+ streaming service, fans would undoubtedly rejoice. As for Season 4, which was pitched in mid-November, Tamara Becher-Wilkinson is remaining tight-lipped on the details. She shared that she is not at liberty to discuss the plot, while assuring fans it would have "blown" them away.