Will Netflix Pick Up The Shannara Chronicles?

The fact that there is still no official confirmation for the Shannara Chronicles Season 3 has worried and saddened the fans. A hard-core fan of the fantasy series has even created an online petition to prompt Netflix to continue with the franchise.

At the time of writing, more than 1,200 people signed the petition, and it remains to be seen if it’s going to come under Netflix’s radar. And until that time, it wouldn’t hurt to take a closer look at the series and try to guestimate if the streaming giant is going to pick it up.

Turbulent Chronicles of Shannara

The series is based on Terry Brook’s fantasy books that topped the best-selling charts across the country. The TV adaptation premiered back in 2016, and it aimed to set the new standards. However, the airing was plagued by one hurdle after another.

First, the Shannara Chronicles fell victim to the bumpy restructuring in Viacom, which was the original producer of the series. That was the moment when the series was taken off MTV and transferred to Spike – another network that’s under Viacom’s wing. But the switch didn’t happen overnight.

The break between Season 1 and 2 lasted for a year and a half. Combine the timing with the switch to another broadcaster, and it’s no surprise that the ratings failed to meet the expectations. As live views translate to money in the production industry, there had been rumors that the series would get killed altogether.

Then in early 2018, Viacom came out with an official statement. The fantasy epic was being axed off the air, but there is a silver lining. The series co-creators Miles Millar and Alfred Gough retained the proprietary rights over the franchise, and they were shopping for a new partner.

However, it appears there’s more to the decision to kill the series than just the ratings and company restructuring. Some production mistakes might have affected the series’ ratings despite the transition to Spike and the long break.

will netflix pick up the shannara chronicles-Shannara-Chronicles

Perils of Producing a Book-Based Fantasy Series

It’s super tough to emulate the Game of Throne’s success. And it’s safe to assume that the Shannara Chronicles team failed to take advantage of some lessons from the GOT’s production. So, what are the main challenges?

Departures from the Book

While GOT received praise for its ability to expand the story beyond George R.R. Martin’s books, we can’t say the same for the Shannara Chronicles. The authors have taken too many creative liberties and thus failed to keep the viewers hooked.

will netflix pick up shannara chroniclesThe-Shannara-Chronicles

But don’t think that the Chronicles are the only show that suffers from this ailment. A similar problem happened with The Walking Dead and some other franchises. As for the Shannara, some critics have gone as far as to say that Season 2 seemed like an “alt-history” of Brook’s books.

Hard Fantasy – Hard Sell

The thing that made GOT so popular is the fact that audiences could identify with the human element. Despite the magic, dragons, and whatnot, it was the human characters that shaped the plots. However, things are different with the Shannara.

As you already know, the series is a hard fantasy. That means all the drama revolves around elves, witches, warlocks, and other creatures. In other words, the series lacks a balance between the human and non-human elements.

So far, the only franchise that managed to succeed in hard fantasy is Lord of the Rings. In contrast, the Shannara’s sincerity and lack of humor may come off as being cheesy, preventing it from attracting bigger audiences.

Aesthetic Appeal

If someone asks, you’ll probably be able to provide a detailed description of fantasy creatures, their attire, and even place of residence. But to tell you a secret, this is not something you want to see in a fantasy series.

netflix pick up the shannara chroniclesThe-Shannara-Chronicles

Generic aesthetics that lack a touch of modernity significantly affect the viewing experience. Yes, Brook’s books started in the 1970s, and the series tried to emulate those looks. But the disco-era cues don’t resonate well with today’s audiences who seem to crave a more contemporary appearance.

An excellent example of this is the TV adaptation of The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.

Why Is That Important?

When considering whether to pick up the series or not, the Netflix executives and producers are likely to factor in the given issues. They might conclude that Season 3 is in dire need of a major overhaul if it’s to remain competitive.

That’s not necessarily a deal-breaker. But then, the question if it’s possible to revamp the story after two seasons merits a lengthy analysis of the series and audience.

And until that happens, you can stream the first two seasons on Netflix.

Shannara Come to Life

Providing the final answer if the Shannara Chronicles are to live again isn’t easy. And it’s safe to assume that Netflix is going to decide against it. But there might be another network that’s willing to take the plunge and continue with the series.

What do you think is going to happen? Which season do you like better? Share your thoughts with the rest of the TJ community in the comments section below.

11 thoughts on “Will Netflix Pick Up The Shannara Chronicles?”

Avatar Sue MacFarlane says:
I would definitely watch season 3 if and when it comes to fruition but for now I will watch season 1 and 2 over a few times.I even started reading the books to see how the series compared…love the change of pace with hard fantasy…I would also like a link so I can sign petition for the series to continue..
Avatar Metin says:
I want to see third season with this cast. Really how many high fantasy series are there on tv? It is very rare and valuable for me. I want to watch rest of the story please.
Avatar Ali says:
I LOVE the first and second series and do really hope that netflix or paramount studios continues it because i ike how the show bought terry books ,books to life
Avatar Jessy says:
Let’s just face it, MTV is *not* where this should have came from. They are more into reality TV and other crap, hell they hardly do music videos any more and that’s where THEY came from.

Sci-Fi had a better chance at keeping this show alive – Air it towards people who *would* watch it – MTV was the wrong audience.

AMC, Netflix, Scy-Fy (or whatever they go by now) all have a better chance at reviving this show – Which is actually pretty darn good, and no I haven’t read the books, but have been meaning to. I think, after it ending the way it did, it *should* pick up at least a 3rd season, to give the series an ending – Too many Networks pick up something, then end it with NO closure and that’s something that is starting to bother me a lot, given I grew up in the era where shows would run for 10+ years – Not just last a year or two and then POOF be gone.

I don’t care about “diversity” in a show, maybe others do, I don’t watch something for how many different ethnic groups they can fit into it, I also don’t watch a show based on how many OTHER people watch it … It’s always about money, sadly.

Avatar Andy Alvarado says:
It not impossible for a third season, their just needs to be a network and great writers to make it possible to even make a 4th season. Netflix I am a great fan but a writer who can help make this TV show a hit. My writing has been published. Thank you.
Avatar Kelly says:
I have read the whole series. From being to the end. It can be updated for the now. Just keep it to the story lines. I loved it all. Terry Brooks is the best writer ever. As for the clothes they are starting over with what they were lift with. Get over it. Bring back my favorite show, please.
Avatar Jennifer Mattio says:
I want more shanara series, Netflix bring it back please
Avatar Julie-ann O'Kane-gill says:
Where is the petition. I will sign it loved this series
Avatar Bret says:
Love to see a third season
Avatar Irma says:
I want to know if you’re going to add season 3 on the Shannara Chronicle? Please add another season… it’s been fun and exciting to watch, entertaining during a difficult time especially during the horrific Quarantine we’re going through‼‼‼
Well besides three Quarantine, I’ve enjoyed watching the entire show, I’m 62 years old and it kept me pretty busy, happy and excited to watch it…PLEASE COME BACK♥️
Avatar Lynnelle Houtz says:
Need to make a 3rd season
Avatar Laura says:
I love both seasons of The Shannara Chronicles. I sincerely hope some Network picks it up.

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