Westworld fans already have an online petition going to ask HBO to renew the show.
By Jennifer Asencio | Published
Westworld fans were shocked on Friday when HBO announced they will not be renewing the show for a fifth season, and are now rallying in their efforts to convince the cable giant to produce one more season. According to MovieWeb, a petition is already up on Change.org, and has now seen an influx of signatures because of the official notice of the show’s cancellation. The move was announced as a result of the show’s flagging ratings during the third and fourth seasons.
The movement has also taken to social media, with fans using #SaveWestworld to signal their support for the show. It is well known that Westworld was intended to have a final fifth season, as its creators, Jonathon Nolan and Lisa Joy, have said as much. As recently as last month, the showrunners were optimistic about getting their final season done, but on November 4, HBO formally announced that the show was done.
It is not unheard of for a show to find itself resurrected by such strong fan interest that results in petitions and protests. The Expanse nearly died on SyFy, but was rescued by fans and found a new home on Amazon Prime, ending earlier this year after six seasons. Manifesto failed to satisfy NBC, but fan interest promoted Netflix to pick it up and finish its story in two more seasons, for a total of four.
Even HBO has felt the pressure of fan disappointment, delivering a Deadwood movie to satiate fans after canceling the series. The movie was released 12 years after the show ended but gave fans a story that filled the hole caused by its lack of closure. Fans upset by abrupt cancellations of beloved shows don’t like to reward the subscribers who did it.
The fourth season of Westworld ended ambiguously, prompting some to claim that a fifth season isn’t necessary. The show is also very expensive for HBO to produce, as it is one of the highest-cost shows to produce. In the face of flagging ratings, the decision to cancel it makes sense.
It also comes at a long-term cost. Giving shows a definite ending increases their value when it comes to licensing for streaming later on. Viewers don’t want to invest their time in a show that has no ending and outcry over shows canceled by streamers under such conditions, such as Santa Clarita Diet, the evidence of this. A show with no real ending that is already over stands less of a chance of being successful on streaming platforms because viewers know in advance that it is incomplete.
Hopefully, Westworld fans are successful in their endeavour, even if it means moving the final season to another venue, as with Manifesto and The Expanse. The announcement of its cancellation has certainly spurred fans into action to defend the beloved series, in hopes of bringing the closure both the creators and the show’s faithful would like to see. They are certainly making their interest in and devotion to the show known, proving there are plenty of people who want to see a fifth and final season.