‘Emerald City’ Canceled at NBC After One Season

'Emerald City' Cancelled: NBC's Wizard of

It’s the end of the yellow brick road for NBC’s “Emerald City.”

The fantasy series, inspired by L. Frank Baum’s “Wizard of Oz” tales, has been canceled after one season, Variety has confirmed.

“Emerald City” becomes the second freshman show to be yanked at NBC, following “Powerless,” which was essentially canceled with the network pulling the show from its schedule. Over the next week, leading up to Upfronts, network executives will be tasked with axing more bubble shows.

Debuting in January, “Emerald City” never found an audience over its 10 episodes. Opening to 4.5 million viewers, the drama dipped week-to-week to a season low of 2.3 million viewers, slightly ticking up for its finale with an audience of just under 2.9 million.


TV Review: ‘Emerald City’ on NBC

“Emerald City” was a darker take on the classic “Wizard of Oz,” following 20-year-old Dorothy Gale, played by Adria Arjona, and her K9 police dog from Kansas who, after a tornado, are transported to another world far away — a mystical land of competing kingdoms, lethal warriors, wicked witches, dark magic, and a bloody battle for supremacy. Vincent D’Onofrio starred as the wizard, and other cast members are Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Ana Ularu, Gerran Howell, Jordan Loughran, and Mido Hamada.

The show had a long road to getting on the air. It first landed a straight-to-series order for the 2014-2015 season, but NBC opted to pass on the ambitious series, which at that time, was being developed by Matthew Arnold and Josh Friedman. Then, for the next season, the network retooled the series with David Schulner, giving yet another straight-to-series 10-episode order in spring 2015, though NBC did not put “Emerald City” on the schedule until early 2017.

In Variety‘s review, critic Maureen Ryan said the unavoidable comparison to “Wizard of Oz” was the series’ problem from the start. “In look and tone, it does not imitate the classic 1939 film starring Judy Garland, but this darker take on the story remains so familiar that, although it’s gorgeous, there’s too little tension and suspense driving it,” she wrote.

Canceled TV Shows in 2017 — What’s Not Returning
Canceled TV Shows in 2017 — What’s Not Returning

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  1. Jess B says:

    The show has such an engaging story and intriguing characters…I am so heartbroken NBC canceled it!
    This has been the only series I liked watching Friday. I enjoyed seeing it set up and progress with such beautiful cinematography…even if the story is in the books. My friends and I are seriously hoping hulu or Netflix pick up the series!

  2. Lisa Lu says:

    The whole family loved this show. Two teenagers and 2- 50 year old adults. Fun Friday Family night. These networks have lost their minds

  3. Lisa Lu says:

    I love this show too. And, I am 51 years old. Very original fun show. There are MUCH worse shows on the air. Makes not sense

  4. Michael says:

    Oh i l’d go to another network who aired it. Good call…

  5. Michael says:

    One the darkest themes, thought provoking, edge of your gory seat story, and u bananas r gonna take this piece of art off the air…. seriously, visually it’s stunning as well as the cast. It’s fun!

  6. An av says:

    Emerald city is one of the most awesome series i’ve seen in a long time. We were waiting anxiously for season 2. Please dont cancel it!!

  7. Contact NBC and let them know how you feel about their cancellation. They reversed their decision on Timeless; maybe they’ll do the same for Emerald City.

  8. Tracy Sampson says:

    Emerald city deserves another chance it’s a good show . I hope another network will see that and pick it up

  9. Jay says:

    So, lame. I thought of this idea years ago(A OZ story that had a game of thrones tone)after reading the original 16 books in the OZ cannon. Which I have read several times over. There were some interesting choices made but there were so many other characters and regions of the land of Oz to explore. This really had potential and was a better re-imaging than the tin man mini series done years ago. Hope someone comes to their senses about this. Wasn’t black sails a later success for STARZ after being an online series also imagined from another piece of classic literature. Maybe they should take the series a bit darker. Bad choice to drop this show.

  10. Thomas says:

    Well that sucks, I really liked this one, the frame work was one you knew but told in a great new way.

  11. Daniel E Costello says:

    Idiots… there’s a clear lack of wisdom at NBC these days. Took them so long to get the series on, it is evident they never believed in it. You’d think they would learn from the insight of so many cable networks who are producing exceptional series concepts. They had a winner here, but they obviously can’t see beyond the common trash they are accustomed to funding. NBC… No Brilliance Continues.

  12. Stacy says:

    No! I’m bummed! What a great, unique show…something different from the typical crime/law shows. I was always waiting for the next episode week to week! Wish they would’ve given it a different time slot. Hopefully it shows up on NetFlix!

  13. Shela Stickle says:

    This show is brilliant. I can not believe this. It is so incredibly casted, staged and visually stunning. The writing is great, there’s so much talent in this show.!! I am so incredibly sad.

  14. Can’t believe they cancelled this show. It took me a couple of episodes to really understand it all but once I did I was hooked. This show is so out of the box and unique I hope someone else picks it up I am so tired of the usual series it’s getting boring.

  15. StrandedHere says:

    NBC never gave it a shot really. They put it in Friday. I always watched it on DVR. I really hope another network will pick it up.

  16. Aly says:

    Anybody else upset about this? Tell NBC! Maybe they will change their minds… I like a happy ending!

  17. Aly says:

    I’ve never even commented on one of these before but I’m really sad about this. I really need to look up a show before I decide to start watching it on Hulu or Netflix. So many people watch shows later on with Hulu or something similar so how can you really tell how many viewers you have for a show? On a Friday night that is a good number! This is a busy world and with all of the streaming options not as many people even have cable I know I don’t. Please bring it back even if it’s just a 2-3 hour finale for some closure! Or sell it to someone else and watch it succeed! Also I almost stopped watching it after the first couple episodes, it didn’t catch my attention much at first so that’s probably why the ratings dropped significantly. As I kept watching it got better until I was hooked, now angry that I finished it and your going to cancel. If you keep it going word would get around how good it is and everyone who lost interest in the first few episodes might give it another shot

  18. Kathryn says:

    I agree that this show should not be cancelled. It is haunting. I can’t stop thinking about it. I am very disappointed to hear that it is being cancelled. Please bring it back or as another writer stated consider selling it to another channel. It is visually very beautiful and the actors are very good. I recorded all the episodes and am now down to the final episode. I have really enjoyed watching the show and am almost afraid to watch the last episode now knowing it really could be the last. It isn’t fair…boo! Bring it back! Thanks! :-P

  19. Karen says:

    What a mistake NBC. You have a great show here, and you cancel it while you keep a lot of other lower quality shows on your channel. I guess I won’t be watching NBC. So disappointed. You sho no imagination or originality when you cancel a show like this. And why did you put it on Friday night? Please sell it to another channel.

  20. Lissa Mcmillan says:

    I usually dont comment but that was my favorite show. I couldnt wait for season two and noe its cancelled. 2.9 million is a great number of people. What did they expect putting it on Friday night. 2.9 mill on a Friday night is reasonable. I hope another channel picks up the series. The actors were great, don’t discourage great talent.

  21. Dee Blackburn says:

    I am so disappointed with this show’s cancellation. I love the dark side portrayed in this show and will miss it.

  22. L.Kemp says:

    Why cancel a show that was very good.

  23. Darlene Frost says:

    I love this show

  24. Zack says:

    No surprise. NBC rejected The Walking Dead. They wanted to make it without zombies and turn it into yet another cop show. NBC also gave us the trainwreck remakes of The Sound of Music and Peter Pan. NBC has a knack for replacing good showrunners with lousy ones, too. That’s the main reason Emerald City failed. The show can only surge in the ratings in the second season if it goes to cable and gets decent marketing–which NBC botched. Just don’t let Syfy get it. They’re part of the NBC family and have the same problem with churning out half-baked dramas. Adios, NBC. Do something you’re good at, maybe sell shoes.

  25. Amaiyha Collier says:

    I loved Emerald City it was an amazing ahow and I was looking forward to season 2.

  26. M. Barlow says:

    Canceling this program is really a stupid thing to do. This show has/had the fan base potential as the Star Trek franchise. Well why should be surprised, Probably the same idiot who canceled Star Trek has canceled Emerald City. The great example of your neanderthal thinking demonstrated by this decision confirms my belief that he or she is still with you! As Forest so wisely put it “Stupid is as Stupid does”. I am really disappointed with NBC.

  27. George Penny says:

    These networks are so critical about numbers and ratings. Emerald City didn’t have the same story line but that doesn’t mean it should have been cancelled.

  28. Komonicca Collins says:

    This is ridiculous. I really liked this show. The good ones always get cancelled

  29. Christel Toma says:

    This just ruined my day :( Emerald City was was such a good show!!

  30. Ruth Diana Anthony says:

    Load of crap….. soon as I like a show on NBC screws me…

  31. Cristofer Verdonik says:

    2.9 million viewers is not enough? What in the world do you need? Half a million viewers is more than enough to bring back great shows like Killjoys and Dark Matter, so a multi-billion company should have no problem bringing back a show that gets 6 times that.

  32. samboo85 says:

    That’s we we should all boycott liberal based networks. They’re to big of idiots to know their own good and what makes money. Then again, that’s liberals for you!

  33. Mae says:

    Emerald City needs only a couple of strong writers and a new home at AMC, USA, FX, Syfy, Starz, Hulu, or Fox.

  34. Jason Dunbar says:

    Let me guess the replace it with either a detective crime drama or a reality TV show

  35. Stacie S. says:

    So disappointed with NBC…. all these good shows they start then cancel when you’ve been sucked into watching it! Hope Netflix picks it up and continues the story! Bye bye NBC!

  36. There’s a petition. Also, head over to their Facebook page and tell them you won’t be watching NBC in the future until they star supporting the shows you care about.

  37. Leah Sullivan says:

    There is a petition on change.org to save Emerald City. You can also write the network from the Emerald City section of their website (if we flood them with our emails and petition signatures they might listen). It is sad that with the end of Grimm and the cancelation of Emerald City and Powerless I have no reason to watch NBC.

  38. Dean says:

    what is wrong with this people at NBC everything what is good they cancel, this was great show and I was really looking forward season 2 but that is bye, bye now and they already cancel me grimm. SO sad..

  39. Kim says:

    Can another network please pick up this great show. I binged watched this show on Hulu & loved it, they left it with such a cliffhanger. I’m so tired of shows leaving cliffhangers & then the stupid networks cancel show 😤

  40. Like all of network television, NBC has again proven to be obsolete, hidebound, and stuck in a dying generation’s world where they can pump out cheaply produced garbage that will be lapped up by morons and the mentally immature. Emerald City was daring, smart, fascinating, well-written, acted, and produced, and belonged on a station that would’ve nurtured it and allowed it the time that high-concept, arc-driven series need to find and establish their audience. Emerald City could and would have been huge like Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead, but NBC refused to give it that chance.

    The sad truth is that NBC (and the networks) rely on an archaic, outmoded, irrelevant Nielsen’s rating system PRECISELY so they can cancel shows that they don’t want to support (e.g., because they’re expensive) with the EXCUSE that they have poor ratings. And TV “journalists” (a term I use lightly) continue to stupidly play along instead of calling them out on their bullshit. American audiences don’t watch TV like they did in 1955. And the reality is that because many don’t trust the networks to not cancel their favorite shows, they don’t even watch them UNTIL they know they’ll be given proper treatment. Once again, NBC proves that they cannot be trusted.

    My family and I will NO LONGER watch NBC or support it. We will continue to support HBO and Netflix which stand by their programming and audiences.

  41. stewag48 says:

    the series was indeed “gorgeous” but too revisionist. The characters with the exception of a sympathetic and appealing performance by Gerran Howell as “jack”, could not generate any likability. Great idea but just too dark and ultimately unappealing………….

  42. Michelle Atherton says:

    This used to be a family night for my husband and our daughter! Now what back to re-runs of the same old dramatic TV shows… please let there be another following series of emerald city!

  43. vinny says:

    tv is going out of bizness the older people like my parents don’t like change the younger don’t care on line is cheper than cable

  44. Mary says:

    Yet another example of good television being bumped for another brain-numbing, brain-washing reality tv show. There is no imagination or joy left in television, so we are forced to pay for programming that has no real value and only pays homage to useless, teenie word trash and fist fights. Thank you, NBC, for confirming the fact that your station is now obsolete.

  45. Francesca penny says:

    I’m gutted I really enjoyed emerald city and so did my daughter and the last one ended on such a cliff hanger please someone do the second series

  46. Nikki says:

    That is very unfortunate, NBC. Hopefully another network with some foresight will pick up where you left off. Probably Netflix or Hulu. There isn’t much to watch on t.v. these days that’s not some reality tv garbage or a police drama. I was really looking forward to seeing what happens next, since there was a huge cliffhanger the last episode.

  47. Ambra Marrs says:

    I agrees – SOO TIRED OF COPS and mentally deranged murder shows…. This was a first season – I noticed there always wasn’t continuity and even picked up where they messed up the story line sometimes, but I still taped and watched the show – enjoyed the living fantasy of it – I agree – NBC messed up – Why is it there are only medical – cop – game – reality shows ???? sucks

    • Steve Duggan says:

      Good show never get time, look at Firefly. TV stations never seem to get it when they have a hit. I wonder if the execs actually bother to watch a show beyond the 1st episode sometimes.

  48. Dunstan says:

    The commercials for this show were a total turn-off. Not surprising since it’s on traditional network television – the place for mass boredom.

  49. Tammy says:

    I’m sure it will be replaced with yet another cop/doctor/lawyer show. Cause god forbid we have something different to watch.

  50. Chrissy B says:

    This is really sad this was an excellent show maybe Netflix could pick it up because it seems like they’re the ones that have all the good shows nowadays nothing good is on TV anymore on our regular stations I love this show I thought it was really good I don’t think they even put it out there for people to be aware of

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