Why The X-Men Spinoff Was Cancelled

Why The X-Men Spinoff Was Cancelled

X-Men spinoff series The Gifted enjoyed a two-season run on Fox, and here’s why the show was cancelled before a third season could happen.

Unfortunately, The Gifted won’t be getting a third season, and Disney+ didn’t pick up the X-Men show – here’s why the spinoff series was canceled. The Gifted is the brainchild of X-Men super-fan and Burn Notice creator Matt Nix, and aired its first two (and only) seasons on Fox between 2017 and 2019. The series is set in an alternate timeline in which the X-Men have disappeared following a mutant terrorist attack that prompted the U.S. government to enact harsh anti-mutant laws, which in turn caused many mutants to go underground to escape persecution.

Described by Nix as “Running On Empty with mutants,” Marvel’s The Gifted follows suburban parents Reed and Caitlin Strucker (Stephen Moyer and Amy Acker) as they go on the run after discovering their teenage kids Lauren (Natalie Alyn Lind) and Andy (Percy Hynes White) have mutant abilities. Along the way, the Struckers join a resistance group known as the Mutant Underground that offers the family refuge from the Sentinel Services – a shady government agency that hunts down rogue mutants.


Related: Does The Gifted Connect to the X-Men Movies?

Despite starting strong with a well-received first season – and soon returning with a sophomore series that was popular with critics and fans – The Gifted was canceled before season 3 could happen. The Gifted’s cancelation is due to several reasons, as is why the latest X-Men movies haven’t performed well. Here’s everything known about why Fox decided to cancel Marvel’s The Gifted.

The Gifted Season 2 Suffered From Low Ratings

Alongside receiving generally solid reviews, Marvel’s The Gifted proved to be a solid ratings performer during its first season on Fox. The series saw an average of around 8.3 million viewers across linear and digital platforms, and no doubt coaxed Fox into committing to the second season of the X-Men spinoff. However, The Gifted season 2 experienced a dramatic drop in ratings – especially linear ratings, which totted up to just 3.3 million viewers. It’s thought the show’s lack of linear ratings success during its second season was the major driving force behind Fox’s decision to cancel it a few weeks after The Gifted season 2 finale aired.

The Gifted Didn’t Get Picked Up By Disney

Marvel’s The Gifted may have aired on the non-Disney-owned Fox broadcast network, but it was co-produced by 20th Century Fox Television and Marvel Television. Both those production companies are owned by Disney, which means that The Gifted is also a Disney-owned property. There was hope that The Gifted season 3 might transition to another Disney-owned platform like Hulu, Freeform, or Disney+, but unfortunately, that didn’t happen.

Why Can’t Modern X-Men Properties Get It Right

The X-Men in Last Stand

The Gifted being canceled isn’t surprising, as the latest X-Men properties haven’t stuck the landing, producing flops like X-Men Apocalypse and X-Men: Dark Phoenix. Movies and shows like Logan and Legion were of high quality and held up under scrutiny. However, people don’t seem to be as interested or entertained by the latest installments compared to the halcyon days of X-Men and X-Men 2. The superhero films started strong, with the X-Men franchise leading the Marvel pack alongside Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man in the very beginning. But interest in the latest movies has dropped considerably, which could be due to a couple of factors.

Related: The Gifted Has No Professor X – And That’s A Good Thing

First off, the latest X-Men films focused on the wrong characters. While the stories of X-Men’s main cast have been told, people grew accustomed to the original superhero lineup. Public attention waned as the franchise decided to take on too many new heroes at the expense of the original ones. Second, Fox had a tendency to overstuff their products — which was a complaint geared toward The Gifted. Few viewers want to sift through countless exposition scenes to find an excuse for the action that unfolds. Therefore The Gifted remains canceled and its season 2 cliffhanger unresolved. However, the canning of The Gifted leaves a unique opportunity open to the MCU to reboot the franchise in a new and exciting way. After all, Marvel’s Deadpool dabbled in the X-Men universe, which could open the door for a new and improved X-Men movie.

Next: The Gifted Season 2 Finale Ending Explained

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Author: Deann Hawkins