Since Star Trek: Prodigy was cancelled, fans have mounted a campaign to save the series.
Paramount+ cancelled Star Trek: Prodigy after one season even though season two is already in post-production. The series will be shopped around so that fans can potentially see that second season, and meanwhile, there’s a flurry of activity with fans tweeting #savestartrekprodigy, buying collectibles and Blu-rays, and reaching out to other streaming channels to make them aware of Prodigy.
While it’s great to see the fandom come together like this, it’s disappointing that Paramount+ would toss out a series instead of trying for other options. Maybe they do, but it doesn’t make sense to kick a popular series to the curb while maintaining some of the less popular ones simply because they’re less expensive to make.
In this economy, it’s understandable that everyone is looking to save money, but when Prodigy was in production, Paramount+ knew it was an expensive series. It also knew that when it renewed the series for season two. Obviously, it was renewed for a second season because the viewing numbers were there. So how does it make sense to cancel a series that fans have been waiting to see, especially a Star Trek property?
Paramount+ needs subscribers, especially Star Trek fans
Paramount+ needs subscribers more than subscribers need Paramount+. And canceling first Star Trek: Discovery now Star Trek: Prodigy isn’t the best way to keep them. Discovery has had five seasons so there hasn’t been as big of a cry to save the series as there is for Prodigy since it ended on a cliffhanger. And not only was it cancelled, it’s being pulled from the channel so no one can watch it unless they own the Blu-rays.
Weren’t there other options? I’m not doubting that any Star Trek series is expensive to make, but perhaps there is a way to tone down those expenses, make adjustments, and shift things around to keep subscribers and fans returning to the channel. It took some fans quite some time to commit to paying a monthly fee to see their favorite Star Trek series once Paramount+ announced that all of those series would be in one place. That is changing, however, and is going to force fans to seek another channel to follow Prodigy. And some may deem the expense too much.
Fan outcry certainly lets more people know about the series, especially on Twitter which has over 450 million users. That attention is sure to bring more eyes and more dollars, but the simple truth is fans shouldn’t have to save a series because a channel has opted to take a tax write-off rather than even make an attempt to save it.
In this day and age, it’s so much easier to cancel something than it is to make an effort to keep it. Paramount+ tossing Prodigy out isn’t going to do the channel any favors because fans will be on edge waiting for the next series that could fall under the axe. Or maybe Paramount+ executives will decide they can make more money with the older series being farmed out to other channels as they had been before. And once again, fans will end up having to chase down their favorite series.
Whatever the reason, Paramount+ may end up losing subscribers who’d much rather turn to ways where they know they have control, even if that means waiting for each season to be released on Blu-ray rather than watching it as it airs. That could certainly hurt the channel’s bottom line and end up costing even more than keeping a stellar series like Prodigy on the air.