We are still reeling over the fact that there won’t be a second season of the socially-infused, hyper-relevant sci-fi thriller Lovecraft Country… but it is, what it is, right?
When Deadline announced the news that the HBO series would not return for a sophomore season, showrunner Misha Green took to Twitter to give us a taste of what was in store for the series which would have been titled: Lovecraft Country: Supremacy. She tweeted an image from the season 2 bible which included “The Sovereign States of America” which is divided the Tribal Nations of the West, New Negro Republic, Jefferson Commonwealth and…the Whitelands.
Take a wild guess which one I would like to live in. Nonetheless, based on this concept alone, the second season would have continued this journey through an amazing world created by Green and her team.
— Misha Green (@MishaGreen) July 3, 2021
In my days at Deadline, I stanned the fuck out of Lovecraft because it hit all of what I loved about a series: it was genre-driven, socially aware, lots of action, had plenty of representation within its narrative…and it was just damn good TV. We featured star Jurnee Smollett on the New Hollywood Podcast.
I also moderated a SAG-AFTRA panel with stars Smollett, Jonathan Majors, Wunmi Mosaku, Aunjanue Ellis, Jamie Chung, Jada Harris, Michael Kenneth Williams, and Courtney B. Vance — and it got hella emotional. Made me love the show and cast even more.
I mean, the ending of the first season kept it open for a second season! Why didn’t we get one? All the signs were pointing to a new season. For one, the numbers don’t lie. The season finale hit viewership highs on both linear and digital with 881,000 viewers, which was up 16% from the series debut. On the digital side, there was almost a 90% increase from the season premiere. On the HBO Max side of things, more subscribers viewed the finale of Lovecraft Country in its first day of availability than any other new episode of an original series on the streaming platform to date. At the time, the series took the top spot on HBO Max when it comes to original series and the first episode was approaching 10 million viewers — which is probably beyond that by now.
Fans loved the series as the finale was trending at No. 1 on Twitter within the first 10 minutes of its airing and generated 369,800 total night-of social interactions — the most of any episode in the series. Ranked on total organic interactions, Lovecraft Country was the No, 1 most talked-about primetime drama series programs across all of TV year-to-date (this excludes series with less than five episodes in 2020 thus far) and the No. 2 most talked-about primetime scripted series across all of TV year-to-date, behind only HBO’s Insecure.
HBO also had faith in the series, bolstering its reach and giving fans what they wanted with a behind-the-scenes look at the series with Crafting Lovecraft Country featuring exclusive interviews with Green, along with cast and crew. Even in February, it seemed like a season 2 was a sure thing when Casey Bloys, Chief Content Officer of HBO and HBO Max, told Deadline: “Misha is working with a small team of writers and they’re coming up with a take. She had a book to go on in the first season. She and the writers wanted to go off and take some time to go out and figure out without a book with these characters, what’s the journey we want to go on. We all want to be sure she’s got a story to tell. That’s where she is right now, working on those ideas. I’m very hopeful, as is Misha, so we’re giving them the time to work.”
HBO was signing a different tune last week when they told Deadline: “We will not be moving forward with a second season of Lovecraft Country. We are grateful for the dedication and artistry of the gifted cast and crew, and to Misha Green, who crafted this groundbreaking series. And to the fans, thank you for joining us on this journey.”
Again, all of the elements for a second season of this amazing series was in place but why aren’t we getting another serving? Yes, this is the finicky world of Hollywood and needs change and the stars don’t necessarily align — but with a show like Lovecraft and its wild success, I feel like HBO and the people in charge would have worked hard to get this to the people. But honestly, I can’t help but think if there would have been a second season if a white man were the showrunner.
I’ll just leave that right there.