Sigh. Yes, you read that right. Futurama has been cancelled. Again. Or rather, Comedy Central has decided – with heavy fuckin’ hearts I hope – to not renew the series after its seventh season; the second half of which is airing this summer beginning June 19 at 10 p.m. This “cancellation” isn’t anything new to long time fans of Futurama – a series that’s been revived three times – and there’s still a glimmer of hope this isn’t truly the end.
Executive producer David X. Cohen and creator Matt Groening spoke exclusively to Entertainment Weekly about the decision and how neither are all that shocked. “It was what I had expected two years earlier,” said Cohen, “At this point I keep a suitcase by my office door so I can be cancelled at a moment’s notice.”
We’ve been in this situation before and it’s tempting when you’re doing episodes that are as good or better than anything you’ve ever done to continue doing it. We’re catching our breath and seeing what the fans have to say. The experience of this show has been so much fun from the very beginning to now — everybody is so happy to work on this show — that it’d be a shame if we all went our separate ways… We would love to continue. We have many more stories to tell. But if we don’t, this is a really great way to go out… I think these episodes are the best ones we’ve ever done.
Dave Bernath, Comedy Central’s EVP of Programming, explains the non-renewal as, “the natural end” to the series’ string of comebacks.
That’s a helluva run that few shows achieve, and especially given the fact that it came back to life, it’s really an amazing story. I’m more thankful and feel a sense of gratitude toward the whole process — and that we found a way to keep going for 52 more episodes — than I really am even thinking about the ending. It’s a blessing that it came back and lasted so long.
In the end, the news is bittersweet. You can’t forget the opportunities allowed Futurama – after the Fox cancellation a direct-to-DVD comeback led to two new seasons on Comedy Central – are almost unheard of, but, how many seasons has The Simpson’s lasted? What about Family Guy!? It’s lasted well beyond seven seasons after its initial cancellation. Grr! Argh!
I’m going to remain optimistic. There’s still 13 more episodes coming this year, and from there, who knows!
Groening: Perhaps Futurama will return in another form, on the Internet, or as a puppet show in the park, or maybe as a puppet show in the park on the Internet.
Cohen: As I said three times before, this is definitely the absolute end of the show. I don’t know why nobody believes me when I say that.
Make sure you tune in June 19th! Until then, I’ll just wait here, hopeful for news about Futurama living on, somewhere, somehow.