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We’re officially getting into cancellation season. No longer is it just Season 1 shows getting axed before they are able to find an audience. Now, the networks are having to make some tough decisions regarding long(ish) running shows. In that spirit, today Syfy decided to axe disease thriller Helix. The show only finished out its second season run a couple of weeks ago; so, apparently, executives didn't need to take a great deal of time thinking over Helix's future.
Unfortunately, Helix suffered from a dreaded sophomore ratings slump. The Ronald D. Moore-produced drama had one of the more interesting Syfy premises when it first hit the schedule in 2014. The first season followed researchers from the CDC who were investigating a viral outbreak at a research lab in the Arctic. The desolate setting and the intriguing premise were enough to bring in good numbers. But with that story told, Helix hopped locations for Season 2, with the story taking place on a mysterious island where another outbreak was occurring. While the plot was sound enough, the numbers were way down during Season 2. Maybe that was because of the alterations. Maybe it was because people didn't want to return for another block of disease episodes. Either way, a healthy percentage decided to bail, and not enough new people checked out the show to make up the difference or anywhere close to it.
In fact, while the Season 1 premiere broke ratings records for the cable network when counting Live+3 numbers, Deadline is noting the Season 2 average was down a whopping 59%. In the coveted 18-49 advertising demo, viewers were actually down 62%. Less than a million people were tuning in each week, and it's actually more of a surprise that Syfy didn't pull the plug when Helix finished out its run on April 10. In fact, it's possible the decision to cancel was made a long time ago and just wasn't announced to the general public.
While it always sucks to lose programming, Syfy’s overall lineup shouldn’t suffer much. The cable channel has a ton of programming set for this summer, including Defiance, newbie Dark Matter, Killjoys, Dominion and, of course, Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!. And that’s just the 2015 summer lineup.
Elsewhere in the cancellation world, other, non-Syfy shows are also not faring well. Today, ABC also cancelled its long-running nighttime soap, Revenge. There’s actually a fairly lengthy list of cancellations that have gone down on the networks this year. You can check out our full rundown, here. Or you can keep your fingers crossed that your favorite show will survive this round of cuts and get approval to film another block of episodes.