Why did DC Universe cancel Swamp Thing so fast?


We received some disappointing news for fans of DC Universe’s new series, Swamp Thing. The show has been canceled after only airing one episode.

The news of Swamp Thing having a troubled production is no secret. We reported a few weeks ago that the series had its initial 13-episode order cut down to 10 episodes before the season had even begun airing.

Today news broke that Swamp Thing has been canceled after airing only one episode. Unfortunately, it appears that there were too many extenuating factors behind-the-scenes to warrant the series getting a second season.

DC Universe’s decision to cancel the series before it could even get seriously underway is disheartening for fans. Although I don’t think it necessarily has to do with the show’s quality or its ratings.

John Gholson, a respected industry reporter, took to his Twitter account to clarify what may have happened behind the scenes:

"North Carolina promised a $40m tax rebate that, due to a paperwork error, they were unable to deliver. That was roughly half the proposed budget for s1 (which is estimated at $80m). When NC discovered the error, the corrected. WB shut down production, realizing they’d be taking a bath on the rebate and paying for far more of it than assumed. The adjusted number from NC is something like $14m. That’s a massive difference."

Essentially, it boils down to someone making a serious accounting error and now Warner Brothers has had to pay for far more of the first seasons’ budget than they were anticipating. This explains why the season was cut down from the proposed thirteen episodes as well.

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Unfortunately, were the show to continue on for a second season, WB wouldn’t be able to afford to make the show look as good as it does for the first season and it would take a major dip in quality.

It’s already pretty surprising that a small series on a brand-new streaming service received an $80 million budget, but James Wan’s involvement probably had something to do with the risk involved.

There is more information about North Carolina’s budgetary cuts on Star News Online who reported on this back in April.

There is some good news amidst all this sadness though. The remaining nine episodes of Swamp Thing will continue to air as expected on DC Universe, so at the very least, we’ll get to see how the first chapter of Alec Holland’s saga ends.

You can catch up on Swamp Thing through the DC Universe app. New episodes will continue to stream on Fridays. 

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Are you saddened by Swamp Thing’s premature cancellation? What do you hope to see from the remainder of the season? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!