SundanceTV’s ‘Rectify’ Ending After Season 4

Rectify canceled
Courtesy of SundanceTV

SundanceTV’s breakout hit “Rectify” will end after its fourth season premieres this fall, it was announced Friday at the Television Critics Association.

The series is created and written by Ray McKinnon, who exec produces along with Melissa Bernstein and Mark Johnson. It centers on Aden Young’s Daniel Holden, a man recently released from death row after serving 19 years for the rape and murder of his high-school girlfriend. Abigail Spencer, J. Smith-Cameron, Adelaide Clemens, Clayne Crawford, Bruce McKinnon and Jake Austin Walker play extended members of his family who are finding ways to relate to him after his newly found freedom sends him back to their small Georgia town. Luke Kirby plays Daniel’s lawyer, Jon Stern.

While never a ratings hit for SundanceTV, “Rectify” has been a critical darling for the cabler and helped it to be known along with big sister AMC as a place for quality content. In reviewing its third-season finale, Variety critic Brian Lowry called the show “lyrical and hypnotic” and wrote that “at a time when more TV dramas feel like the great American novel, ‘Rectify’ is something of a marvel, playing like a little haiku.”

The series won a Peabody Award in 2015 and is currently nominated for three Critics Choice Television Awards, including one for best drama series.

“‘Rectify’ is in many ways an existential story that was allowed to come to life during an existential era in serial storytelling,” said McKinnon. “It was a case of perfect timing with the perfect partners. I have always felt that ‘Rectify’ could end at any time or just as easily continue. Well, not easily. But there is no perfect ‘end’ for this story nor for these characters. They will continue to live on. We just won’t document them any longer. And the timing of this ‘non-end’ end feels exactly right. SundanceTV has been a dream to work with on this journey; I am so grateful to have been allowed the freedom to tell the tale I wanted to tell in the way I felt it should be told with the mad and beautiful collaborators who joined me on the ride… Oh wait, we haven’t shot the final season yet. I’ll get back to you.”

The final season of “Rectify” goes into production in 2016.

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  1. Fabulous show! Engaging story, emotional, great acting, mesmerizing, heart-wrenching, haunting, and so many other adjectives. This is superb drama.

    I barely finished watching the series finale, not knowing initially that it was the finale. The denouement vignettes that began playing out in the last 30 mins +/- led me to the conclusion that it was the end of the series, but I checked online to be sure and came across this article. Although it leaves you with a feeling of incompletion, it is enough, and I agree with some of the comments that it’s okay for a series to end this way. I hope Netflix doesn’t pick it up, as one commenter stated, because I’m comfortable with leaving it as it is.

  2. Joan Luppa says:

    Rectify is spell binding…not wanting to wait until the next episode. The actors and actresses in this series are perfect for their roles especially Daniel!!
    Outstanding acting in a part that has to be so difficult.
    So glad another 8 sessions. Just sorry not on PBS for more to see it!!

  3. Mary Pezzi says:

    Best drama on TV – The reason I subscribe to Sundance.

  4. Howard Humphreys says:

    Just finished watching the 3 Seasons on Netflix…Great show!!

  5. texbarb says:

    Love this show “Rectify”…do t want it to ever end!!

  6. Mike says:

    No SPAM here…. trust me .lol but there is a small close group on Facebook where we discuss this show in great length. join us.. again i am not spam..lol its 1:33 monday the 7th

  7. Shirley Shamblin says:

    Love this show. Really hate to see it end. But I hope it doesn’t end like Betrayal ended. I was really upset about that.

  8. Connie Herrera says:

    I really liked this show…but then anything thats worth watching and not a dumb reality show gets cancelled…2nd show I have watched in Sundance that gets cancelled…The Red Red was excellent…sad😞

  9. vikki says:

    I think ‘Rectify’ was a big let down. I would watch each episode with baited breath and then,,,nothing. I will admit the storyline with Teddy and Daniel was good, Nothing like a good coffee enema.

  10. Ray M says:

    The show is sublime. I truly love all the characters and how they developed each episode. Visually it was so stunning at times, it was poignant, sad, frustrating and redemptive on so many levels. Daniel struck a chord in me. He didn’t lose his humanity, Teddy in some ways was sad, pitiful and at times almost stoic. The blurred lines between the good and the bad – and some of the villains were so bad but had depth and you grew to see their perspective or at least understand their motivations. I loved the redemptive spirit of the show. I’ll miss Daniel.

  11. Love, love, love this show. It’s of the highest quality on all counts.

  12. excellent series cant wait for the n ext season of rectify. Aiden Young plays his role magnificently. Cant wait!!!!

  13. Deborah Lukaszewski says:

    Absolutely love this show and am so glad I stumbled acrossed it. The storyline is superb and the
    acting excellent. We need more “sink your teeth into” type of series such as this. It is sad to see it end but know it must.

  14. Sussan says:

    Pity it is ending. Television in Australia is full of commercials, or private too dear.
    I wait normally for the dvd to come out.
    Luke has a compelling appeal for depth.

  15. robert floydez says:

    Counting the days for season 4

  16. Shannon says:

    I can’t believe it … another favorite show of mine bites the dust. Give me a break! 🙄

  17. Geneva Cash says:

    I am from the South and can totally identify with all the gossip, fears, and prejudice against Daniel. I joined the Rectify discussion group online because I feel so intensely after every episode that I need to explain the love of the family, religion, feelings of betrayal, and loyalty. This show affects me that way; Ray McKinnon is from Georgia so I’m sure he knows too.

  18. Tati says:

    I really liked this show and get a little aggravated on these shows that are only give 1 to 4 seasons. Nobody has even enough information on what the show is about.
    But please, these networks would rather have REALITY shows that has so much bad drama it’s not funny or fun to watch. Then they go on TV and really wonder why their marriages fail. BAD DRAMA…
    But shows like Rectify continue to get cut…

    • Jay says:

      Some shows have a story to tell that has a definite ending. Do you really want them to drag the story out past it’s entertainment value? A problem with a lot of shows lately is that they go to long, jump the shark and start becoming a parody of themselves. I think this show is one of the best dramas I have ever seen on television. I also think we should except it for what it is and be happy that the story that is being told and told so well. Artistic direction can be lost or extinguished and coming up with fresh material can be daunting if they have all ready reached the pinnacle then push past it to keep the money flowing. If a great painter paints 20 great works in his life they will be the best work they can do, but if that same painter got famous then started pumping out a new painting every week just for the money the entirety of his work would be greatly diluted and lose all the value. I would rather they finish strong than keep pushing the plot just because the fans want them to keep dancing or producers want to squeeze out every dollar they can.

  19. Lazaros Simeon says:

    This is probably one of the best shows I’ve ever seen on TV. Well-written, superbly acted. Awesome photography. One of those shows where I don’t want it to end, but I know it must. It begs a resolution. I watch in Canada on Netflix, but I think I might have the Sundance Channel added to my cable package just so I can watch season four when it comes out.

  20. GillianG says:

    I vote for it getting picked up by Netflix!

  21. bimplebean says:

    Such a wonderful, wonderful show. So profoundly well written, acted and produced. My wife and I find it utterly gripping, mesmerizing, even though it moves slow as molasses. But yes, a story has to have an end – that’s what makes it sweeter. Looking forward to it!

  22. Sharon C. Thompson says:

    My husband and I love this show. The writing, acting and plot are told with brilliant restraint. I thought about this show long after Season 3 concluded. Haunting. I agree and understand that it does have to end so I am looking forward to the show finale in the Fall. Great work SundanceTV ~ Thank you!

  23. Russ says:

    Love this show, and can totally relate to the “stumbled across” it feeling. One of my favorite aspects to this show is how it does not have a liberal/conservative bias to it, nor are any of the characters in it totally good or totally bad. Much like life, there are shades of gray everywhere.

  24. michele says:

    Incredible series. I tend to watch documentaries on the topic because fictional shows do not tell this corner of the justice system (or the post-justice system) too well. The beginning to end this series was gripping. The dialogue is wonderful, the feelings it stirs up sometimes hard to face, and the lessons to be learned are countless. Amazing work by McKinnon and I am grateful to have stumbled upon it. Cannot wait for the final season.

  25. Irma leary says:

    I am glad to hear there will be a season four. I found the story and the character both to be very moving. It’s been many months since I have seen the last episode, but I still recall the feelings it provoked. It seems to have changed my life in some way.it is as much as one could ask for in quality entertainment.

  26. Jill Phillips says:

    This is one of the best things I’ve ever seen on TV. Will be so sad to see it end.

    • Jeremy Lemmen says:

      I 100% agree. I think it became my fav TV series soon after watching. I literally had tears in my eyes every episode the first season and part of the 2nd, and I’m a grown man lol. It does make you wish it would never end.

  27. Dianne says:

    Loved rectify!!! hope it returns

  28. Berne Shaw says:

    It will turn out that Donald Trump did the deeds not Daniel and the series will come to a close

  29. centrd says:

    Love Rectify so much. A beautiful “haiku” is a perfect description. I’m okay with a “non-ending ending”, as long as Daniel’s name is cleared. The characters can still carry on with their existential struggles knowing the truth. I can live with pretty much anything except Daniel’s continuing to be held responsible for a crime he didn’t commit. He will continue to pay for it, no matter what, so let that be punishment enough.

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