After 'Arrested Development' season 5B blew up in Netflix's face, would renewing 'One Day at a Time' be such a bad idea?
The new episodes of ‘Arrested Development’ don't live up to expectations and the lack of enthusiasm from the cast is glaringly evident. Is it time for Netflix to drop the show?
If you’re a fan of ‘Arrested Development,’ chances are the highly anticipated second half of season 5 did not live up to your expectations. The latest, and hopefully the last, episodes of the satirical comedy will make you want to reconsider if it was ever a good idea for Netflix to reboot the Fox show.
There is no sugar-coating the fact that the episodes that premiered Friday are nothing short of boring. The utter lack of enthusiasm from the actors is very evident and gives you an idea about why the show is on its very last leg.
When George Sr. comes on screen, you cannot help but think back on the sexual assault allegations against Jeffrey Tambor, and no scene between him and Jessica Walter, his on-screen wife, passes by without reminding you that she was verbally assaulted by the man.
The boredom of Jason Bateman, Portia de Rossi and Will Arnett is implicit in their portrayal of the Bluth siblings and, most of all, it pains us to see Alia Shawkat continuing on the show despite declaring that she no longer wants be a part of the toxicity that was a result of the overall falling out of the cast.
So, despite all this, will Netflix continue on with the show? Probably, because that is what Netflix does.
Meanwhile, there is another Netflix show that could do with a renewal but doesn't seem to be getting one. ‘One Day At A Time’ is beloved by many and represented minority communities by offering a unique perspective of the American experience. However, the show was cancelled by the streaming giant on Thursday.
In a series of tweets, Netflix explained their decision to not greenlight season 4 of the comedy series focusing on a Cuban-American family. “We’ve made the very difficult decision not to renew 'One Day At A Time' for a fourth season. The choice did not come easily — we spent several weeks trying to find a way to make another season work but in the end simply not enough people watched to justify another season,” read the first tweet, after which Netflix went on to thank all the cast and crew associated with the project.
And to anyone who felt seen or represented — possibly for the first time — by ODAAT, please don’t take this as an indication your story is not important. The outpouring of love for this show is a firm reminder to us that we must continue finding ways to tell these stories.— Netflix US (@netflix) March 14, 2019
Further, they asked anyone who felt “seen or represented — possibly for the first time — by ODAAT,” to not take this as an indication that your story is not important.
However, the fans of the show were not satisfied and blamed the show’s lack of popularity on the streaming platform’s decision to not promote the show at all. One of the fans wrote, “Maybe, just maybe, think that the way to continue finding ways to tell these stories is by promoting them more when they're already there, instead of siloing that outreach for just those who you think may watch. It's simplistic and tokenistic tbh.”
Netflix has given us some of the most diverse shows but every time something as amazingly representative as ‘One Day At A Time’ comes along, the lack of promotion is evident.
Even when shows such as 'Arrested Development', which boasts of a predominantly white and heterosexual cast, are getting multiple chances to get back on their feet. A wholesome, American family show which addresses difficult issues is given the boot without so much as a fighting chance.
We saw the same happen to shows like ‘Everything Sucks!’ and ‘Sense8’ which were benchmarks for representation on multiple counts.
If Netflix stopped trying to breathe life into stories that have either been told too many times and stories that have no life left in them, may be they would find the resources to nurture shows that mean something to people that are not represented all that often.
There are many campaigns to bring 'ODAAT' back to the library and it still not too late for Netflix to do the right thing. If not, may be Hulu or Amazon Prime will swoop in on the opportunity.
One thing is certain, there really is little place for Netflix to grow with media giants such as NBC, Disney and CBS launching their own streaming platforms. There is only so many millions that Netlix can spit out for 'Friends' and Marvel shows before realizing they need to focus on original programming. So, it may be a better strategy for Netflix to invest in shows that matter — in terms of content, casting and story telling.