Four to six weeks — I seem to remember that was usually about it. One show was so wonderful that it got canceled immediately — there never was a second episode.
So, I was not surprised when I watched the first episode of the DC Universe show Swamp Thing, thought it was good enough to continue to check out, and then it was immediately canceled.
I’m not heartbroken. I only subscribed to the app because of Doom Patrol, which had a whole season and which was really good. Since I already had the app, I decided to check out Swamp Thing — another show based on a terrific 1980s comic book.
The first episode was okay, though definitely a step down from Doom Patrol. There were some clunky moments. It’s the sort of show where two characters meet, express to each other, clearly and repeatedly, how much they want a drink, so you know that at some point they will share a bottle, not bothering with glasses, and reveal all sorts of past trauma for the benefit of the audience. One of the good things about Doom Patrol was how slowly it revealed the past traumas of the main characters, and how the revelations were solid enough to make them worth the wait.
But it’s not only that Swamp Thing was axed (though apparently they are going to show the rest of the season). Now there are news stories that the entire DC Universe app thing will be going away to be replaced by a big Warner Brothers app (Warner owns DC Comics). Sort of like how Marvel used to have a bunch of shows on Netflix, but now they’re pulling those shows back in order to start their own Marvel (or Disney) app thing.
I do have to wonder if all of this is good business, if this is the best way to build an audience, by getting people to subscribe to one app, and then to a new one, because you canceled the first one, and then a newer one, etc.
Which, given my track record (see above), probably means this will all be a huge success. After all, I’m the guy who skipped Avengers Endgame and the Game of Thrones finale (in fact, the entirety of Game of Thrones) in order to follow a group of misfit heroes who have had to deal — often unsuccessfully — with the Bureau of Normalcy, a variety of disembodied butts, a muscle man who accidentally gave the entire team an orgasm by flexing the wrong muscle group, and a super villain nemesis who also narrates the episodes, complaining constantly about how slow the plots move and how tedious and character-focused the show is.
Entertainment conglomerates should just monitor what I’m following and put their money on the opposite.
Unless they’re doing that already…