Netflix sinks 1899 after one season

Originally published at: Netflix sinks 1899 after one season | Boing Boing


Amazon Prime should pick them up. It’s too good to die such an ignoble death.


I have already registered my displeasure in the Whatcha Watchin’ thread, so I’m just going to sit over here and stew


But it was very well watched! Like one of their most watched shows! I am assuming that the cost per episode was extremely high, especially since it sounds like they built a Mandalorian-style virtual set.



This. It’s not just a question of “are a lot of people watching this show?” It’s a question of “is this show attracting more viewers than we could get if we made two different shows that each had half the production cost?”


What sealed my decision to not watch was when it was favorably compared to Lost.


Where Netflix seems to be really dropping the ball right now is in figuring this all out ahead of time. Starting shows up only to have them stop after a season is not a good way to run a network - everyone starts assuming that’s going to be the case and doesn’t watch…or watches then gets frustrated.

I am still upset about Teenage Bounty Hunters


It’s definitely not like Lost, other than it being a weird puzzle. I would compare it to Lost, but if Lost went somewhere with it’s mysteries. They definitely had a plan for this show from the beginning. I can still recommend watching this single season, in fact, because of that


The former is exactly why I’ve yet to watch 1899, because I’m tired of experiencing the later with Netflix. These days I don’t start a Netflix show until it has at least two seasons out.


coincidentally, i started watching it the other night.

it’s a puzzle show. with an ensemble cast. stuck together on an “island.” everyone seems there randomly, but it’s all “on purpose” ( dun dun dun. ) ghosts. retro scifi gadgets. heavy on symbolism. and so far it seems everyone could have a wavering moral center – switching from good to bad guy, just like on lost. but so far no one is evil in a way that would challenge being a family friendly watch.

i find it the most lost like show i’ve seen in a while. i was going to give it another episode or two before quitting. but now that i know it ends, maybe i’ll watch it through.

yeah. it doesn’t make sense to me that they keep dropping things. it’s not like they really have all that much new good content. they could at least stick with “hey, it’s not terrible” shows for longer.


We would have loved to finish this incredible journey with a second and third season as we did with ‘Dark.’

ah… the similarity makes so much sense now. they even made sure to have tunnels


I will be curious to see what you think when you finish the season.

My aversion to Lost was that they were clearly making it up as they went along and there were just too many things that got tossed aside or given incredibly dumb explanations. It had all of the Carlton Cuse weirdness and character work that I so enjoy, but the plotting left a lot to be desired and thematically it ended up all over the place. After it’s first season (and knowing that they had a three season and done plan) made me feel a lot better about where 1899 ends. It makes sense, and now I really want to know more, but won’t get to


That service is another where I wait for a second season most of the time. :thinking: Are there a lot of women in lead roles in 1899? If so, there might be better options after what happened to Good Girls Revolt, Paper Girls, and the speculation about A League of Their Own. Maybe the third time’s the charm and Amazon will prove me wrong on that last one. :crossed_fingers:t4:


Netflix: Here’s a show you might like.
Me: Oh cool, I’m going to check that out, as soon as I’m finished with the thing I’m currently watching, that just came out.
Netflix: Also we’ve canceled it already.
Me: Uh, which one?
Netflix: Both of them.

I dunno, I feel like Netflix’s approach of canceling any show unless a sizable percentage of their audience binge-watches it all in the first week is maybe not a great approach to making tv series, nor of building a library of shows to draw in or keep subscribers.

Though I’m glad when they actually admit they’ve canceled the show. I’m waiting for the second (or third) seasons of a number of shows that came out a few years ago, and I’m never sure if they’re canceled without comment or they might yet have more episodes. I kind of assume they’re all canceled, but every once and a while a show will have a couple year gap between seasons, and reappear without advance warning, just to throw me off.

I suspect their metric is even less straightforward (and more stupid) than that, from what I’ve heard.

You’re not alone in that, which is why they canceled everything. Apparently if we don’t all binge watch the entire series within a week of it coming out, it’s considered a failure. It’s insane.


Ouch! Papergirls still stings


I enjoyed it but it wasn’t as good as Dark I didn’t think. Also where it ended seemed appropriate enough as a full ending.

Did anyone else immediately think Red Dwarf, Game over?

I think netflix is so lost, the only show on their i want to see more of is the witcher which they are ruining into the ground, or season two of shadow and bone which is taking for ever, if i was the one paying for netflix i would have ditched it long ago, I often waste 30 mins on the home screen looking it at lots of stuff i dont want to watch.

I can not stand any thing they have to dub, not because its dubbed, but because they only seem to have one man and one woman and they dub everything, its like get some different voice actors ffs!

All their dubs sound exactly the same to me, i can not tell which char is which and they all just roll into one!

Their good shows are to few and too far in between, but doing this and making shows they dont renew is just as bad, because why would i watch S1 of this show now, knowing there will be no end to it, there is no point wasting my time!


FFS, not again.
At this rate, we’re going to end up with shows where writers are writing like there will only ever be one series.

Although, maybe that’s not necessarily a bad thing and will encourage a certain narrative discipline that can be missing from some of the shows where they know they’ve got a second series.

Kinda like the difference between UK shows and US ones. A lot of classic UK shows only ever ran for one or maybe two, short series, yet were still hugely successful. Exceptions are things like Doctor Who or the aforementioned Red Dwarf, but good examples include The Young Ones, Spaced, The Fast Show, Yes Minister & Yes Prime Minister, etc.

All of those series never ran for more than 8 episodes per series, and most topped out at 3 series (Yes Minister / Prime Minister being an interesting exception, where you could technically argue the latter was an extension of the former. But even then, that’s five total series, each with 7-8 episodes per series).

But then again, I think I got in to Netflix precisely because it shirked the rules many traditional TV series were bound by. There’s some Netflix (or other streaming service) series I’ve watched where episode length has varied relatively dramatically, because creators know they aren’t constrained by ad breaks or the news schedule, and that was positively exciting. It felt like creators had been let off the leash somewhat.

I don’t want Netflix to become yet another traditional video medium, but if they keep cancelling promising shows at this rate, that’s precisely what they’re going to become.
Long running series will be those that are cheap to produce, but that provide a high return (think reality and daytime TV formats and stuff like Bake Off), and more ambitious fictional series with high budgets will be constrained to shorter runs unless they’re stupidly successful. And even then, they’ll feel like they’ve been artificially extended, as writers won’t have created the show with multiple series in mind.

In short, it feels like for Netflix, an entire series is a pilot, which for the consumer is really irritating, as by the time they cancel it, you’re already invested.


I know this isn’t really how American TV generally works, but I kinda wish they’d just have a definite idea of what the beginning middle and end are gonna be and know exactly how many episodes or seasons they have to do it. This anxiety that they have to make it up as they go along, not knowing if it’s gonna last one season and cut a story short and leave us hanging or 20 seasons and leave the show feeling like a zombie…

Yup, it’s the same thing that killed Sense8. I mean, production costs have always played a factor in popular shows (many a show was cancelled because star actor contracts were up for renewal and the cost would be prohibitive), but it seems we’re in an era now where they play an even bigger role than viewership does now, at least on streaming services.


I’m anxious about the follow-up story to the Magnus Archives podcast because the original had a definite storyline planned, in a set number of seasons, and they pulled it off.

There’s enough wiggle room to write a spin-off, but it ant in the original plan.

1 Like