Swamp Thing star Derek Mears has discussed the surprising cancellation of the show, and what fans can look forward to from the remaining episodes. Following Titans and Doom Patrol, the more horror-influenced series was the third original series to debut on DC Universe. Though the former two exist within the same world, Swamp Thing existed solely as its own entity. Created by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson, Swamp Thing tells the story of Alec Holland. In the comics, Holland is a scientist whose consciousness and memories are transferred to the plant life surrounding his lab after an attempt on his life. While Andy Bean portrays the character's human form, Mears dons the costume of his alter ego, and plays the titular Swamp Thing.
The first episode debuted on May 31. Despite mostly positive reviews, the show was officially canceled a week later. The news was a surprise to many, despite the previous reduction to the episode count. Fans immediately began protesting the decision on social media, calling for the show to be saved. Others, meanwhile, began investigating what led to the decision. For a while, it seemed as though the issues stemmed from an error on the budgeting side of things. Screen Rant itself quickly discovered, however, that it wasn't because of state grant issues.
Speaking with Collider on one of their podcast episodes, Mears discussed at length his reaction to the show's cancellation. "It was such a heartbreaker to find out after our first episode that we got canceled for the second season" the actor explained. "All we’d heard up until that point was how amazing everything was." Mears goes on to share the general response from fans, who remain curious why the show was axed before it was seen how it would fare with audiences. "It’s a weird nebulous space that we’re all in now because we don’t know officially why that would happen, or why they canceled it. Even if you are going to cancel it, wouldn’t you wait until later on until to see how it plays with fans before? So, something’s going on somewhere."
The show is produced by Aquaman director, James Wan. Like Mears, he was equally in the dark as to why the show had been axed. Regardless, Wan urged fans to continue watching. Further along in his discussion, Mears expressed similar sentiments. Following the announcement that the show had seen its episode count cut from 13 to 10, Mears was unsure it would all come together. "I was worried at first, because we had a week or so - a week or two weeks to re-do everything and execute it so it all makes sense, and I was worried, going I don’t know how we’re going to get this all together." He went on, however, to praise the writers for what they were able to achieve. "Handing out the script for the new ending, and I was like, “Oh my god. This works. I don’t know how you guys did this. You guys are magicians. I am on board for this.” I was just so happy."
Originally, Swamp Thing was conceived with a three-year plan. Barring any changes of heart from those over at Warner Bros, many will no doubt continue to be disappointed that those plans won't come to fruition. As Game of Thrones can attest, however, sticking the landing of a show is notoriously difficult. If indeed the writers of Swamp Thing managed to deliver a satisfying conclusion as well as Mears stated, despite everything, then fans are in for a treat regarding the rest of the season. And while many would have liked to see the show run for years, a well-executed, ten-hour Swamp Thing movie, as Mears described it, is nothing to be sniffed at.
Swamp Thing is currently available for streaming on DC Universe.