Amazon may have recently greenlit another season of its comedic superhero series The Tick, but it’s also cleaning house of other original programming that, presumably, hasn’t been doing as well. According to reports from Variety and Deadline – the latter confirmed by an “Amazon insider” – the company is now cancelling three other comedies, including Tig Notaro’s One Mississippi, Jill Soloway’s I Love Dick and Jean-Claude Van Damme’s Jean-Claude Van Johnson.
Notably, Soloway’s debut effort with Amazon, Transparent, brought the company multiple Golden Globes, but her newer show led by Kevin Bacon didn’t connect with audiences, Deadline says. Soloway, however, has an overall deal with Amazon so may come back with other series in the future.
Meanwhile, Notaro’s One Mississippi had a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes for its latest season, but it’s also unclear to what extent the C.K. Louis scandal came into play here, given that Louis was titled as an exec producer on the show. He was later removed, but the association may have remained in viewers’ minds. (Besides, if the show had viewership numbers to match its good reviews, Amazon probably would have found a way to keep it around.)
As for the satire series Jean-Claude Van Johnson, Amazon cancelled it a month after release. That didn’t really give it enough time to find an audience, but perhaps Amazon trusted its numbers – and its gut? – on that one.
The cancellations come just a few months after Amazon’s studio head Roy Price stepped down, after being suspended from the job in the wake of sexual harassment allegations.
Since then, Amazon has passing on many of his projects, including comedy pilots Sea Oak, The Climb, and Love You More, in addition to these three new cancellations.
According to both Deadline’s sources and Variety, the cancelled series represent a larger shift in Amazon’s content strategy. Reportedly, Jeff Bezos wants the company to focus on bigger series that can attract a mainstream audience, rather than the niche (and critically appealing) fare it developed in the past. In other words, Amazon is looking for its own Game of Thrones.