The Returned Will Not Be Returning For Season 2

A&E has had some trouble cementing an original programming lineup. For a while, the network had Bates Motel, Longmire and a slew of new programs ready to premiere. But Longmire has already been shipped off to Netflix and newbie Those Who Kill was swiftly cancelled. Then, today, A&E revealed that freshman drama The Returned has suffered the same fate.

Based on the French series Les Revenants, The Returned hit the schedule this spring, airing as a companion series to Bates Motel. Having Bates as a lead-in ultimately didn’t help the supernatural drama, as Bates Motel premiered to 2.1 million total viewers in 2015, while The Returned’s premiere only managed 1.5 million. It also dropped steadily in the ratings in the subsequent weeks, leaving the cable network with little choice but to cancel the series.

The Returned drew a lot of comparisons to Les Revenants, likely because it is based on the French series but missing the fun accents. The American version was set in a valley at a base of some mountains. The small town life was interrupted, however, when dead people began returning to life, not knowing where they had come from or that they had died. This obviously caused emotions to run high and superstition to be rampant, especially as some of the motivations of the returned were hostile. The series starred Jeremy Sisto, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Tandi Wright, Mark Pellegrino and Kevin Alejandro. If you would like to keep up with the story, the French version is already working on a second season, which is expected to premiere this year.

A&E has had some trouble building a scripted programming lineup. While the network does boast the return of Intervention, along with reality fodder like Duck Dynasty (down in popularity following controversy) and Married at First Sight, the network has been really working to build a scripted programming lineup to go along with the fairly popular Bates Motel. As noted prior, previous efforts haven’t done so well. Now that The Returned has been cancelled, Deadline reports the network has picked up The Omen sequel Damian, originally developed over at Lifetime, to series.

A&E just renewed Bates Motel for not one but two more seasons on Monday, so the network’s anchor show will be around for at least a while longer. Still, there are a ton of other cable offerings out there, and the network could really use another hit to cement itself as a viable competitor. And that hit needs to have more of a “wow” factor than bringing Intervention back from cancellation.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.