‘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. RonBow says:


  2. 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

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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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!

  8. Wendy says:

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

  9. 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 😑

  10. 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.

  11. Tommy says:

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

  12. Debi McGrury says:

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

  13. 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!!!

  14. 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!

  15. 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.

  16. 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!!!

  17. 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.

  18. Minnie Stewart says:

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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  21. 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!*

  22. S, Sdurham says:

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

  23. 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!! 🦇☠️💩⚰️🔫⚰️

  24. 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

  25. 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.


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

  27. 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!!!!

  28. 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!

  29. 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.

  30. Carl says:

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

  31. Ronbo says:

    agree WGN Sucks !

  32. 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!

  33. Ronbo says:

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

  34. 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

  35. Cathy and i am 70 years old says:

    The outsiders ranks right up there with sons of anarchy and breaking bad!! Why would WGN find it a good move to cancel the show? This is a disappointment to a major corner of the TV audience. I implore you to reconsider. The cast and writers make me believe I am really there with their performance. This show has at least two more seasons in it.

  36. Mickey Woods says:


  37. Teresa Allen says:

    I loved Outsiders I could not wait for Tuesday night. So upset. WGN will not stay on my favorite channel list. I need to know how this ends.

  38. We helped WGN to stay on Dish and this is the Thanks we get. Sorry Peter Kern WGN I will not be watching your rerun Marathon’s We want more seasons of Outsider’s.. Good bye WGN

  39. Rdhart says:

    If anyone wants to start a boycott of this Network I’m in. What kind of moron cancels their most popular show. I’ll never watch this network again if they cancel Outsiders.

  40. I am very upset that they canceled this show.I loved it. And so does alot of my friends and family. I dont know who decides to cancel shows, but this is a big mistake. At least it could have been finished. There are way to many unanswered questions. I shop Netfilix or somesone picks this up. At least to finish it.

  41. Rimar says:

    Very disappointed!! It should be picked up by a bigger network considering the following it has. Bring it back!

  42. TIffMont says:

    Disappointed about the cancellation? Let them know what a HUGE (and stupid) mistake they’ve made.

    WGN America
    2501 West Bradley Place
    Chicago, Illinois 60618-4718

  43. Frank DeTomasso says:

    This is so stupid, this is the way the CEO takes care of it viewers, you put on such a great show with Fantastic actors, get the public very interested and then cancel it! You all should be ashamed of yourselves. I to will be another viewer you just lost. Hopefully another network will pick it up.

  44. Mark Neff says:

    I can’t believe they just canceled a no.1 show like that. They need to fire the CEO. I definitely gonna band WGN channel now. I was a faithful viewer of it and paid more on my Dish package monthly to just get WGN since they air good shows instead of the reality and who killed who and fake pawn and storage shows that rerun daily.

    Just unbelievable why why why. You get no.1 ratings and you cancel. You all need head examined.

  45. Joy Cerio says:

    When was the season 2 finale?

  46. Truly a sad day, I really liked this show. It was the only thing worth watching on wgn.

  47. Lynda Dellipoali says:

    I am so disappointed in the decision to cancel the Outsiders. It was the only show on WGN that my family watched as an original series. If it had such high ratings i can not understand why WGN would choose to cancel it. Guess we will have to find something else to watch. Will not be watching WGN any longer.

  48. No outsiders = turd sandwich says:

    Absolutely will not be watching any WGN unless this show is brought back.

  49. Mysticeyes says:

    The best show on this network! What a shame!

  50. Michele Forberg. says:

    I adding more value to the advertisers and distributors while ignoring the tv fans, is another show of disrespect. ” Outsiders” was a refreshing concept for viewers and deserved better than two seasons. I hope your network will stay away from offering mundane reality shows and continue to offer viewers (who are suppose to be the target for advertisers after all) quality programming. If not, remember there are many channels that will.

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