It seems as though two seasons of mockumentary goodness was enough for the algorithm-based decision makers at Netflix, as American Vandal has been canceled. The second season of the Peabody Award-winning series largely came and went (like almost all Netflix series) in September, with sleuthing schoolmates Peter Maldonado (Tyler Alvarez) and Sam Ecklund (Griffin Gluck) investigating the disgusting (would-be) criminal mastermind known only as the Turd Burglar. It was a confident follow-up to what felt like a fan-favorite series in the making, which makes Netflix’s decision something of a surprise.
Then again, it’s difficult for some series to capitalize on their initial success, especially when it seemingly comes out of nowhere. Season 1 of American Vandal was a surprising and refreshingly funny addition to the ever-expanding Netflix catalog, offering smarter-than-expected takes on high school life that explored everything from bullying to the ever-present pressure of social media in a teen’s day-to-day experience. In addition, the first season delivered a standout performance from Jimmy Tatro as accused drawer of dicks, Dylan Maxwell.
As reported by Variety, Netflix offered a brief statement on the series’ cancelation. A release from the company said, “American Vandal’ will not return for a third season. We’re very grateful to the creators, writers, cast and crew for bringing their innovative comedy to Netflix, and to the fans and critics who embraced its unique and unconventional humor.”
As is usually the case when a popular, critically acclaimed series gets axed unexpectedly, other outlets are reportedly expressing interest in giving the series a second chance. That’s possible because Netflix doesn’t actually produce American Vandal, CBS Studios does. And according to Vulture, the studio has already begun fielding interest from other companies. Likely candidates would include frequent rescuers of beloved properties, Amazon and Hulu, but there’s no word yet on whether or not either streamer is making calls to CBS Studios. It might make sense for CBS to keep the show in-house and attract a younger crowd to CBS All Access, though, again, viewers will have to wait to see if that pans out.
With all the good will and praise American Vandal has accumulated over just two seasons, it seems unlikely that the show will be down and out for good. With more and more companies looking to add quality content to their libraries, this well-made mockumentary is likely looking pretty attractive right about now.
American Vandal seasons 1 & 2 are available to stream on Netflix.