Two of HBO’s newer comedies will continue to make audiences laugh as the premium channel announces Crashing and High Maintenance have both been renewed for season 3. The news comes as the series are currently airing, suggesting both have performed well enough for the cabler in their second seasons to warrant renewals before their respective finales next month.
Both premiered in mid-January, with Crashing taking the coveted Sunday night spot after the Sarah Jessica Parker-led Divorce, while High Maintenance has staked a claim on Friday nights. Though the latter isn’t typically known as fertile ground for television shows, it has seemingly worked well for the series from co-creator Katja Blichfield and Ben Sinclair about a marijuana delivery man known simply as The Guy. The 10-episode second season has received generally high (sorry) marks, especially for its semi-anthological format, which offers new characters every episode (save Sinclair’s The Guy) as he ventures from apartment to apartment in New York City.
Meanwhile, Crashing has, like its lead, grown more confident in season 2. Based loosely on Pete Holmes’ own experiences as an up-and-coming stand-up, the series has made great use of its frequent guest stars, bringing on the likes of Bill Burr and John Mulaney this season. It’s also added to the cast with a terrific performance from fellow stand-up and series writer Jamie Lee as Pete’s season 2 love interest, Ali. Crashing delivered one of its strongest episodes yet this past Sunday with ‘Artie’, exploring series co-star Artie Lang’s struggles with substance abuse.
News of the renewals is great for fans of both Crashing and High Maintenance, but it’s also good news for HBO, as it gets to add more episodes to its library as the content arms race with Netflix and Amazon heats up. The former has been on a spending spree lately, snapping up two of televisions most prolific creators in Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy, and signing a four-picture deal with frequent HBO collaborators Jay and Mark Duplass.
With the streaming service apparently aiming to produce all the content all the time, it’s in the best interest of channels like HBO to keep shows like Crashing and High Maintenance running. Even if their respective ratings numbers aren’t huge, having episodes in the streaming and on-demand library ultimately works to the network's advantage, giving subscribers a reason to stick around and watch the shows at their leisure, even if they don’t watch live. So far that’s worked for these two series, and it will be interesting to see if the same is true for the likes of Divorce and Alan Ball’s Here and Now.