DC Universe has announced that it has canceled its latest live-action TV series Swamp Thing, just after the show’s first episode premiered last week. It’s the first of DC Universe’s slate of shows to get the axe.
Launched last year, DC Universe is designed as a one-stop shop for all things from DC, providing subscribers with a massive library of existing comic books, films, and TV shows, along with a whole bunch of live-action and animated original dramas. The first live-action series, Titans, premiered in October and was quickly renewed for a second season, while the second, Doom Patrol (which has not received a second season order), hit in February. Swamp Thing is the latest original, and it premiered on the streaming service on May 31st. The streaming service has also released the animated Young Justice: Outsiders earlier this year, and plans to release another, Harley Quinn, in October.
The news comes after word broke that AT&T’s WarnerMedia will launch a beta of its own streaming service later this year, priced somewhere between $16 and $17 a month, along with a cheaper, ad-supported version in 2020. That service would include networks like HBO and its library of content and would “essentially [include] all of WarnerMedia’s entertainment offerings and will feature its own, new, original content,” according to The Wall Street Journal. Where DC Universe would fit into that larger framework is unclear.
The reasons for the show’s cancellation could also come down to different factors: the series had some production issues in North Carolina earlier this year and saw its episode count cut from 13 episodes to 10 this spring. The state promised Warner Bros. a multimillion-dollar tax rebate to offset the production costs, but a legislative snafu left the state’s film funding grant without any funds. Legislators thought that there was excess money in the fund, not realizing that it had already been earmarked for productions in the works. However, North Carolina’s Department of Commerce said that the blame lies with Warner Bros. “The production company had a clear understanding of the resources available from the state under the grant program, and proceeded with the production here on that basis,” it said.
Whatever the reason, Swamp Thing won’t continue after it completes its 10-episode run this summer.
Update June 7th, 2019, 3:40PM ET: Updated to clarify DC Universe’s live-action and animated offerings.