‘Outsiders’ Canceled After Two Seasons on WGN America

outsiders ryan hurst thomas m wright
WGN America

“Outsiders” has been canceled after two seasons at WGN AmericaVariety has learned.

The drama series follows the exploits of the Farrell clan, a Kentucky family that has lived atop Shay Mountain for over 200 years. But their off-the-grid way of life is threatened when a coal company decides to strip mine the mountain, leading to serious confrontations between the Farrells and the world below.

Peter Kern, interim president and CEO of Tribune Media issued the following statement on the series:

“After three years of investing in marquee, brand-defining dramas, WGN America has successfully expanded its audience, its reach, and its presence in the minds of viewers. In our next phase, we intend to expand our original and unique content to continue growing our relevance and appeal to the widest possible audience. To achieve this, we will be reallocating our resources to a more diverse programming strategy and to new structures, enabling us to expand both the quantity and breadth of content aired by WGN America. This move is designed to deliver even more value to our advertising and distribution partners. To free up the resources to reach this goal, we will unfortunately not be renewing ‘Outsiders.’ We are grateful to our production partners at Sony Pictures Television and the terrifically talented people who made the show possible.”

The series stars David Morse, Ryan Hurst, Gillian Alexy, Kyle Gallner, Christina Jackson, and Thomas M. Wright. Peter Mattei created the series and executive produces along with Peter Tolan, Paul Giamatti, Dan Carey and Michael Wimer. Sony Pictures Television, Tribune Studios, Fedora Entertainment, and Touchy Feely Films produce. The Season 2 finale will air on April 25.

The show was WGN America’s third original series after “Salem” and “Manhattan,” which both ended after their third and second seasons respectively. It is currently WGN’s top-rated original, averaging 2 million viewers across four airings on Tuesday night. The Underground Railroad drama “Underground,” also currently in its second season, is now the sole original series on the network. However, the network is currently in production on a pilot for “Scalped,” a drama set on a Native American reservation based on the DC graphic novel series of the same name.

The cancellation comes a month after Kern took over Tribune Media following the exit of CEO Peter Liguori, who announced his resignation in January. Ligouri came onboard in 2013 and invested heavily in developing original programming for the network, though the shows developed under his tenure have failed to achieve ratings on par with their cost.

Earlier this week, Tribune Media also abruptly shut down a national digital news service — which would have included content aggregated from its 42 local TV stations — less than two weeks before it was slated to launch as part of a broad restructuring of its digital operations.

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

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  1. Shane says:

    It is the same old song and dance… any time a show is good, and has a premise based in FREEDOM some corporate over-seer decides to cancel it. GUESS WHAT WGN.. I now have NO REASON to turn your channel on. YOU SUCK!!

  2. Clara Minor says:

    This is extremely disappointing. We looked forward to ever show and would calendar when the next season would start. I’m so sad.

  3. Kim l says:

    Really??? Why in the hell would you drop a show that isnt finished. The viewers want more. Come on. Ive been waiting and so i searched to see wth is going on. Now i find out its cancelled. Really????:( very upsetting. Guess you might as well drop the channel. Cause whoever’s in charge now your need to be fired.

  4. Kim says:

    I think this is crap , I looked forward to season 3 only to find out there will be no season 3. Wth, why take a show off that has over a million viewers? I hope another station picks this show up so I can continue watching.

  5. Tim Johnson says:

    Tired of programs being canceled I enjoy watching!!! No new series, I will stick to watching movies, hunting show and sports where I get to see endings. Sorry WGN your reach is shrinking not growing..

  6. Paula Ross says:

    I now have no reason to watch WGN. “OUTSIDERS” is a great show & this guy blew it off. I don’t wish to watch cowboys & indians, had enough of that.

    Bye WGN!

  7. Niki says:

    you just cancelled one of the best shows ever on tv. Your channel sucks.

  8. I was asking God what He wants me to do…what is my purpose for? He has answered!!! WGN you will reach out to me to know the Best Series you will ever have broad casted for eternity!!! Thank you in advance, with greatest love and compassion for humanity,Darlene😘💨

  9. Mary says:

    This is so sad. Loved that show. It was one of the better shows on tv. Very disappointed! If this is a habit of this station canceling good shows won’t be watching this channel anymore.

    • Kennet moore says:

      Yeah I can’t believe this. I started watching the show on Hulu. That’s who should pick it up and continue production.

  10. Sharon Reeves says:

    I am so disappointed in WGN so far every series I have gotten interested in they have cancelled, and now I learn they cancelled my second favorite series Outsiders it had a very interested story line and I couldn’t wait for the next season only to find out it was cancelled, not only that I bought series 1&2 which mow does me no good. I want get interested in another series on that channel again there record for cancelling very good series is to high. Shame on WGN, You lost me as a viewer.

  11. Not saying says:

    Thank you for taking the only show that made me watch wgn.

  12. Anna Guevara says:

    Total middle finger to the viewers that watched religously and gave them the ratings they have..to abandon this successful show now without it coming to a conclusion…money grabbing corporate a’holes!

  13. Art says:

    WOW! Are you kidding? How can you let an audience get into a show that was really good and well written and just pull it off the air? WGN, you need to get your act together or you’ll be losing more fans! This was definitely one of the better shows on the network!

  14. Ruben Simon says:

    WGN isn’t in my DishNetwork “Flex Package” – I went through great trouble to see it each week online. WGN’s lost another “viewer”. I hope someone picks it up and makes a movie of it, bringing all the action to a satisfying conclusion. WB, are you listening?

  15. Randy says:

    Won’t be watching WGN anymore let u get started in series and just cancel unfinished and without warning won’t waist my time with the network again .

  16. jan says:

    WHY ARE THEY CANCELLING THIS. I LOVED IT. IT WAS THE TALK ABOUT SHOW AT WORK. SO SAD, I HOPE SOME ONE ELSE PICKS IT UP LIKE THEY DID LONGMIRE

  17. RonBow says:

    RIGHT ON , HEATHER IM WIT YOU

  18. Heather says:

    OUTSIDERS was the ONLY show I EVER watched on WGN. I’m so pissed y’alL cancelled it, I will never watch WGN again, and I’ve been boycotting it for yall. So in ending my rant to this, I’m telling WGN to eat shit and sending You a middle finger

  19. That SUCKS! This show is so great and the cast is phenomenal. Bring it baaaccckkk!!!

  20. Diana Gallagher says:

    That is a bunch of crap. You say, “We have broadened our audience”, well I wonder how that happened. Maybe, because people loved Outsider. You think the Game of Thrones people or The Walking Dead people thought about cancelling when they were on the rise? This is stupid and I don’t think I’ll be watching WGN shows for a while.

  21. Kathy Hinton says:

    If WGN cannot be loyal to its audience..why should the audience be loyal to WGN? I started with Salem…gone….Outsiders…gone…Underground…gone….me…GONE

  22. Mary says:

    I am so upset & disappointed that Outsiders was not renewed. Makes me not want to watch anything on WGN. I am not alone in this either.

  23. sharon says:

    You’re crazy! Totally different than anything on TV and you cancel it. You left us in the dark. You could have went on for some time with this series. Sometimes I just don’t get it. Well! people make mistakes! That’s life I guess. This was a show I didn’t want to miss. What a shame!

  24. Wendy says:

    This is awful…. I loved this series…. Shameful…..

  25. Seldom Seen Smith says:

    As someone who watched the show from the start, it seems like it’s probably for the best. At the beginning it was a great show that had a lot of promise with a good premise and characters. Unfortunately the writing seemed to get really lost, almost like the writers didn’t have any idea where the show or characters were going, how they were going to get there, much less how they were going to resolve it. Won’t really miss it that much, it’s not like this show was another ‘Firefly’ or a show of that caliber.

    • Tess says:

      The Outsiders storyline was finally evolving and the characters were beind defined and finally finding their voices. Season 2 is always an arc to something else. If you did not see the storyline arc mores the pity for you. But I was looking forward to seeing the continued development of the characters. I hope Season 3 will occur–if not at WGN, then elsewhere. It is a great show.

      • Mad as hell says:

        Unbelievable !!! Such a great show and you just yank it away from us ..so pissed off about this very bad decision 😑

  26. Upset says:

    I have watched both Outsiders and Underground. Both shows are very interesting to watch this is history WGN. What is wrong with you, bring the shows back and get rid of some of the other junk that is on your network.

  27. Tommy says:

    I will not be watching any WGN series anymore. Cancelling a program without any ending is as bad as it gets.

  28. Debi McGrury says:

    I can’t believe it!! Finally a show we really got excited over and they cancel it. Thanks WGN!!

  29. Mrs says:

    Please everyone contact WGN by phone or email and show them how outraged Outsiders fans really are!!! Just go to their website for contact info. I’ve sent my email!!!

  30. Linda Coburn says:

    Very disappointed that WGN cancelled the Outsiders. We looked forward to watching it every week. I believe there are people that live like that. Also Underground – it is like a look back into history. Why would you cancel such good shows. I can’t imagine another network won’t pick up these great shows. Your loss!

  31. Outsiders was the only show on WGN I watched. Tried to watch “Underground” but just could not develop an interest. Probably won’t even try to watch other WGN shows. Hate getting into something so good and having in jerked off the air. Could have at least had the decency to air a final season for their loyal fans.

  32. Jo Ann Guy says:

    I CANNOT even begin to tell you how MAD I am about hearing that you are going to cancel “Outsiders.” My husband and I look so forward to Tuesday nights to watch this series. Is any other network going to pick it up? I will NOT be watching any more shows on WGN because of this!!!

  33. Maureen Wagg says:

    This is one of the best shows on tv and the writing is exceptional. Totally engrossing topics and family dynamic. Love it. Please bring it back.

  34. Minnie Stewart says:

    Totally disappointing. Good writing and could have gone a long way into voicing what the the coal miners are going through.

  35. The drama, which focuses on a family living in Appalachian hill country, airs its second season finale on April 25. But producer Sony Pictures Television is planning on shopping the series to other networks and streaming services.

  36. Rickey says:

    I’m not sure what else WGN has on their lineup and unfortunately now I’ll never know. Outsiders was a quality television drama and unfortunately the season finale left too many questions. Maybe Netflix, Amazon Prime or Hulu will pick it up where WGN dropped it.

  37. Pissed off says:

    With all of the horrible reality television that poisons our planet, a show like outsiders was refreshing. I love that the people who make these decisions have no sense of imagination or creativity. Way to screw this one up douche bags! You definitely just lost a viewer forever… but you clearly don’t care about your viewers.
    *Suck Failure Freaks!*

  38. S, Sdurham says:

    WGN unfortunately due to your poor decision in cancelling an exceptional show, I will be cancelling your network.

  39. Krista Roll says:

    As I watched the Outsiders from the very first season and Never missed an episode I am very disappointed in WGN they made a terrible mistake, and Underground is a horrible show, I have No reason to EVER watch WGN again!! 🦇☠️💩⚰️🔫⚰️

  40. lick says:

    i never heard of WGN, I only showed up to watch Outsiders.
    I doubt i will watch WGN again
    lol, in fact is see my spellchecker does not recognize the acronym WGN
    rip

  41. Linda Leffler says:

    Let me see now. Outsiders is one of the highest rated shows on WGN so let’s cancel it????? No more WGN shows for me. Hope someone picks it up, need to see an ending.

  42. TYRONE L DANIELS MD says:

    I and my entire family watched the Outsiders. I am very dissapointed

  43. Sandra ValBracht says:

    Also upset!! My husband and I watched every episode twice! We got friends hooked on it also. It just makes you wonder what these networks are thinking with. This is the stupidest decision ever. Probably won’t watch anything on WGN as protest!!!!

  44. Misti says:

    Very upset and confused why you would cancel a very popular and loved show! My husband and myself were huge fans of the show!

  45. James Panetta says:

    “appeal to the widest possible audience” … In other words, they are going to start producing shows based on focus groups which will appeal to the least common denominator instead of producing thought provoking and intelligent shows. Netflix would be wise to pick it up and continue the series.

  46. Carl says:

    I hope Netflix picks it up as I really enjoyed it.

  47. Ronbo says:

    agree WGN Sucks !

  48. Lori Torrez says:

    I’m very sorry to hear that you cancelled one of my favorite shows that I actually work my schedule around to watch while it’s on TV. I do not understand how it is economically feasible to cancel a number 2 ratings original series on your station? I love Outsiders, I love Underground, and I look forward to seeing Scalped. WGN’s Original series’ have always been my favorites, so whenever I had to move, I made sure I had your station on my cable network. Good job keep up everything! I will miss Outsiders terribly!

  49. Ronbo says:

    Let’s Hope a sensible more deserving network picks up Outsiders.

  50. Harold Turner says:

    The Outsiders is by far the best show on TV. You often wonder why there are so many nothing type shows to watch anymore, then you discover this show, get hooked on it, can’t wait for the next episode, the it’s abruptly cancelled. Who are these executives that don’t realize a great show and don’t give it a chance to make it. SAD,BAD MOVE

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