When you thought the era of book-based vampire thrillers was over, came The Passage. But as viewings dropped towards the end of the first season, the executives at FOX decided to cancel the show.
That caused a slew of grieving comments on social media. And the Instagram post from Saniyya Sidney, one of the youngest cast members, picked up a lot of traction. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t worry because The Passage stands a good chance of being picked up by Netflix or another network.
FOX has attracted some notoriety for pulling the plug on particular series too early. Some of the examples include The Tick, One Day at a Time, and Humans. But The Passage faired even worse because the network decided to cancel it after just one season.
Come May 2019, and FOX announced that it wouldn’t be going forward with season two, causing a wide-spread disappointment. All the while, the decision was somewhat surprising because there was and still is room for the series to grow.
The first season covered the first book in Cronin’s trilogy, and the series creator had a clear idea of how to proceed with the following one. Of course, there are specific production challenges due to the intricate plot in the second book. However, it’s not something that a competent team can’t overcome.
So, why did FOX leave The Passage in a production limbo?
It’s the Numbers Game
As a rule, the guarantee for renewal of any series (including The Passage) is the hordes of fans who tune in to watch it. And The Passage was off to a good start in this respect.
Back in January 2019, when the series premiered, it got an excellent viewing of 5.2 million per episode. But for some reason, it failed to keep up the pace, and the viewership dwindled as it progressed. It all came crushing at the pinnacle when only 3 million people viewed the last episode.
It’s evident that the initial magic is disappearing, but is it so bad that there’s no room for the second season? If you were to ask FOX executives, the answer is likely to be positive. However, FOX is in a particular position, and the reasons for the drop in popularity might be outside the series itself.
Balancing Sports and Entertainment
In 2018, some media outlets picked up the news that FOX was signing a four-year contract to air the NFL’s Thursday Night Football. Reportedly, this deal would earn the company more than half a billion dollars a year. But this is not the only thing.
FOX has the rights for postseason games of the Major League Baseball, too. Then Fridays are reserved for the WWE SmackDown Live, and all this puts a significant strain on the network’s broadcasting schedule. Plus, there are hints that FOX appears to go trigger-happy on some series.
To explain, the lucrative deals with sports franchises take precious prime time, which leaves little room for TV shows to thrive. And the Passage is not the only victim. Fans were scratching their heads when Lucifer and Brooklyn Nine-Nine got canceled.
The official explanation was that there just wasn’t enough time to squeeze these series into the FOX’s broadcasting schedule. However, Lucifer is now available on Netflix, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine found its new home on NBC.
More importantly, Netflix decided to proceed with Lucifer even though FOX claimed it got canceled due to poor ratings. And the decision to take the plunge was sparked by the fans who pleaded to the networks.
They’ve made so much noise that Amazon also entertained a thought of taking over, but Netflix won. That indicates that there is a possibility that The Passage might face the same destiny. That is if you are to judge by the thousands of comments after the series got canceled.
What to Expect in the Next Season?
The following sections might contain some spoilers for season two. But these are there to prompt you to join the fans that urge the network to pick up where FOX left off.
As the series follows the books, the second season is happening 100 years after the first one. You should find out what’s happened to the main characters in the meantime and how they’ve managed to survive. Or better say, if they’ve managed to survive.
To tease you a little, the story of Amy is among the most interesting ones because she resides in both the human and vampire worlds. And it remains to be seen how she’s going to cope with that.
With this in mind, the challenge of jumping a century from one season to another is immense. But so are the rewards if the creators succeed in keeping the audiences at the edge of their seats.
The Rite of Passage
It’s safe to assume that the Passage stands a good chance of being picked up by Netflix or another network. At the time of writing, the first season was available on Hulu, and it might also be a contender for the next season.
Who is your favorite character in the Passage? Would you watch the series on a network other than Netflix? Drop us a comment below and tell us what you think.