DJ Ending Up With Steve Explains Why The Spinoff Failed

DJ Ending Up With Steve Explains Why The Spinoff Failed

It was great seeing DJ & Steve ending up together after years of dating, but their relationship also represents Fuller House’s biggest issue.

As romantic as it was seeing DJ (Candace Cameron-Bure) marrying Steve (Scott Weinger), it also highlights the main reason why Fuller House ultimately failed, and was canceled. Debuting in 2016, Netflix’s Full House spin-off ran for five seasons before it wrapped up in 2020. It brought back the core cast of the original ABC sitcom except for Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, who had alternately played Michelle. However, the focus was on the younger characters, particularly the oldest Tanner daughter.

In this day and age of reboots and revivals of classic shows, there was initial excitement over the news that Full House’s story would continue, but it quickly died down after its first year. While Netflix is notoriously secretive about its ratings, it was believed that Fuller House suffered a massive viewership drop after season 1. This was reflected in the show’s poor reviews, particularly in its first few years. Fuller House did get considerably better over the years, with its final season being arguably the strongest. That said, it was immediately clear that it would never have the same success and acclaim that Full House got. So, unsurprisingly, Fuller House was canceled.

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Related: Fuller House Series Finale Ending Explained: What Happens To Every Character

In hindsight, the reason for this is clearly represented by their decision to partner up DJ and Steve. The pair started dating in high school, and Full House made their love story an integral part of the show. Weinger became an official recurring cast member, making him the only second actor to join the show through a love storyline following Lori Loughlin’s Becky, who married Jesse (John Stamos). After a brief break-up in the show’s later seasons, the pair got back together when the original sitcom ended, only for Fuller House to reveal that they once again went their separate ways — with DJ marrying Tommy Fuller Sr., hence, the show’s title. When they finally got back together for good, the spin-off further glamorized their love story, sending off the message that they were always meant to be — despite marrying other people and subsequently dating others after those marriages ended.

Why DJ And Steve’s Happy Ending Ruined Fuller House

DJ Matt and Steve Fuller House

Insisting on having DJ and Steve end up with each other after everything that happened between them highlights Fuller House’s biggest issue and ultimately why it never took off the same way as Full House — it leaned too much on nostalgia instead of crafting its own story. Prior to Steve actively seeking DJ again, she was on the verge of starting a relationship with Matt (John Brotherton). They worked together as veterinarians and had great chemistry, but with her history with Steve haunting her, she started second-guessing herself.

Fuller House sold the notion that DJ was better off with Steve by regularly referencing their old days as high school sweethearts, never once mentioning their issues, and most importantly, why they broke up and married other people. It felt like the only reason they got back together was because of their history, and they wanted to relive that fluttering feeling of first love. While it didn’t seem like they had anything in common as adults, they were content living in the past — just like Fuller House as a whole.

Why Netflix Canceled Fuller House

fuller house canceled

Fuller House was canceled due to a drop in viewership, and the series couldn’t keep up with the competition of the myriad other shows on Netflix. Fuller House’s cancellation was announced shortly before the season 4 premiere, and those who kept up with the series weren’t thrilled by the news. On top of that, the crew expected at least one more installment past season 5, even setting up plotlines for the cast — but that never happened for the series.

Related: Fuller House: Why John Stamos Is To Blame for The Olsen Twins’ Absence

While Fuller House had a following right out of the gate, the show gradually dropped in viewership as the series went on. After season 1, the largest exodus of watchers occurred, proving that Fuller House had a great build-up but no follow-through. The series had a tendency to overegg the nostalgia factor, to the detriment of the writing. Some of the content from the later seasons showed that the series had found some footing, and was able to separate itself from its parent show. But at that point, no one was really watching. Therefore, Fuller House was canceled.

What’s interesting with Fuller House’s scheme to piggyback on the success of the classic sitcom is that it adapted the wrong things from it. The sequel directly lifted its premise from Full House, with DJ dealing with the same situation as her dad three decades ago. The Netflix series also significantly changed its core characters to mirror their predecessors. Unfortunately, it failed to put a focus on its young cast, which Full House was much better at. There was barely any narrative exclusively revolving around the kids. Instead, the love lives of the adult cast members were given more attention.

Next: Fuller House Season 6’s Story Plan Would’ve Been A Better Ending

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About The Author

Ana Dumaraog
(5595 Articles Published)

Accidental movie and TV fan who is perpetually curious, Ana rekindled her love for writing and married it with everything pop culture. The result is a passionate writer who could ramble (and of course, pen) about films and series multiple hours a day. She has a soft spot for procedurals and old sitcoms (The Golden Girls!) but won’t dare watch any horror films although she’s (ironically) dying to see one. Though a bit late to the party and was an actual Force non-believer, she now finds the Star Wars franchise quite fascinating (fun fact: it was a crazy Jar Jar Binks/Sith theory that drew her in).

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