Just because a major streaming studio like Amazon likely has deeper pockets than many of its linear TV and streaming competitors, that doesn't mean the company aims to keep projects around when they aren't as successful as originally hoped. That was proven over the weekend, as Amazon's trip to the Television Critics Association summer press tour revealed a handful of notable original series that were cancelled.
That said, Amazon's spending habits can provide some instant comfort for projects that have a lot of hype built up around them, which is why the company was able to also issue some high-profile renewals alongside the cancellations. In fact, each of the luckier shows got renewal orders before streaming any new episodes on Amazon.
Let's dive into the rundown below, starting off with the shows that won't be back for more episodes in the future.
What Shows Did Amazon Just Cancel?
Given that Amazon doesn't have the same depth and breadth with its original content library that Netflix's has, there haven't been quite as many cancellations from the company over the years. That said, Amazon is presumably quite hungry to find its next big viral hit, such as The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, that can serve as its subscriber-welcoming signature series. The following five series clearly did not qualify.
Forever - Cancelled After One Season
Of everything listed here, Maya Rudolph and Fred Armisen's afterlife comedy Forever seemed tailor-made to wrap things up after a single season. Created by Alan Yang and Matt Hubbard, Forever was as high-concept and deep as half-hour comedies get, with most episodes offering surprise narrative shifts, along with co-stars such as Catherine Keener and Noah Robbins adding to the dark hilarity. While a second season wouldn't have been the craziest thing in the world, though, Forever is the rare show that works heavenly as a one-and-done.
Patriot - Cancelled After Two Seasons
Starring Michael Dorman as its captivating lead playing dual roles, Amazon's Patriot offered up a consistently fun mix of hectic crime drama and quirky humor. (Creator Steven Conrad is also responsible for Epix's current fan-favorite thriller Perpetual Grace, LTD.) Critics and fans really liked Patriot, and were pumped to see this world expanded for two seasons, with co-stars like Kurtwood Smith and Debra Winger spicing things up. Unfortunately, it would seem Patriot's core viewership just wasn't large enough to justify another renewal.
Lore - Cancelled After Two Seasons
In many ways, Lore was one of Amazon's bigger gambles in the original programming. The horror anthology was based on a popular podcast (never a guaranteed win for TV), and focused on dark folklore, using animation and dramatic reenactments to deliver tales about evil doctors, werewolves, cursed dolls, fairies, devils and more. As produced by The Walking Dead's Gale Anne Hurd, Lore offered enough for horror fanatics, but had some troubles winning over the general public. Two seasons should be considered a victory, though.
The Romanoffs - Cancelled After One Season
As creator Matthew Weiner's first TV series following his critical juggernaut Mad Men, Amazon's The Romanoffs was on the opposite end of the spectrum from the AMC advertising drama. Though the two shows shared a few cast members, it was an anthology series centered on characters who believed they were descendants of the Russian royal family, with different casts in each episode. Though it was highly anticipated before release, the first season wasn't nearly the critical darling that Mad Men was.
Too Old To Die Young - Cancelled After One Season
The first big TV effort from director Nicolas Winding Refn and actor Miles Teller, Too Old to Die Young centered on Teller as a mournful cop that gets pulled into a hectic and broody-as-hell criminal underworld. (The crime drama was co-created by master comic book storyteller Ed Brubaker, too.) The response to Too Old to Die Young was polarizing, to put it lightly, with critics praising directorial style and performances and railing on female characters and the grim tone. Season 2 seemed possible, but Amazon cut the neon lights after just one.
What Shows Did Amazon Just Renew?
Most companies like to wait until a show is out to decide whether or not to issue a quick renewal, since early buzz on a project does not always equal big audiences turning out. Amazon seemed perfectly fine showing off its confidence with the following shows, however, giving all their cast and crew members a big reason to celebrate in the past couple of days. Let's go over each of the newly renewed shows.
The Boys - Renewed For Season 2
Based on the excellent comic book series from Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson, The Boys is Amazon's latest off-kilter superhero series, starring Karl Urban and more as a team of human vigilantes aiming to bring order to a world gone chaotic due to an ego-driven superhero team. Created by Supernatural's Eric Kripke and executive produced by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, The Boys earned its Season 2 renewal from Amazon after a slew of positive reviews, but before the viewing public even had time to binge Season 1. Now that's super.
Carnival Row - Renewed For Season 2
With the Season 1 release of Carnival Row still a month away – it drops on August 30 – Amazon decided the smartest decision would be to guarantee another eight episodes to creators René Echevarria and Travis Beacham, possibly to kick off the creative process in earnest. Carnival Row's popularity rose during San Diego Comic-Con, with stars Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne promoting the drama, in which tensions rise between humans and the group of immigrating mythical creatures that populate the area. A series of murders kicks off Season 1, and it looks like there will be more than enough deadly intrigue for another season.
The Expanse - Renewed For Season 5
The only TV show on this list that didn't begin its existence as an Amazon original series, The Expanse was embraced by the streaming company after its cancellation at Syfy in 2018. Debuting on December 13, Season 4 is one of the most anticipated TV seasons of the year amongst sci-fi fans who will be pumped to see all the returning familiar faces, as well as new faces such as Torchwood's Burn Gorman and Sleepy Hollow's Lyndie Greenwood. Amazon probably granted The Expanse an early renewal to counter the lengthy production and post-production processes. Either way, fans are getting a lot more from the adaptation of novels from James S.A. Corey (the pen name of Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck).
With other Amazon series like Jack Ryan already renewed for Season 3 ahead of its Season 2 premiere, the streaming company is as ready as ever to give subscribers big marquee projects, even if it means pulling the plug on smaller shows such as the ones seen above. Let us know in the poll below which of the cancelled shows you'll miss the most.