Archive 81—the horror series about an archivist whose latest job gets him pulled into a mystery involving a missing director and a demonic cult—won’t be getting a second season.
This decision is surprising, given the show did fairly well on the viewership front—Deadline is reporting that the show broke into the Nielsen and Netflix’s weekly Top 10 ratings, and the critical response was very positive.
Those numbers, however, were apparently not enough. This news is an extra bummer because that also means we may never find out what happens after what Tor.com’s Leah Schnelbach describes as an “unhinged” final shot of the first season.
Archive 81 was based on a 2018 podcast of the same name and starred Mamoudou Athie and Dina Shihabi. It took place in the mid-90s (1994, to be exact), and captured the essence of that time in a suitably creepy fashion. The show was also produced by Malignant and Aquaman filmmaker James Wan’s company Atomic Monster, and was written and executive produced by Rebecca Sonnenshine.
Sonnenshine is also a producer on The Boys and Vampire Diaries and served as showrunner for Archive 81. Directors for the first season were an impressive group as well, and included Rebecca Thomas (Stranger Things); Haifaa Al-Mansour (Wadjda, Mary Shelley); and Justin Benson and Aaron Moorehead, a duo who also directed two upcoming episodes of Moon Knight.
While the news is undoubtedly disappointing to many, the first season is still available on Netflix. And who knows? Maybe another streamer will pick the show up for a second season. Stranger things have happened.
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