Tuca & Bertie received a second life, pulled from the depths of its Netflix cancellation by late-night programming block Adult Swim. The adult animated sitcom received rave reviews for its first season on the streaming service, at one point holding a 98 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Critical acclaim wasn’t enough to save the show from the chopping block, however, as Netflix’s private viewing numbers suggested the series wasn’t reaching a broad enough audience to validate its continuation. (Case in point: Even the creator of the show didn’t have it marketed to her.)
All ten episodes of the first season hit Netflix on May 3, 2019. The show came with comedy star power, as Tiffany Haddish voiced the titular Tuca, while burgeoning Netflix star Ali Wong voiced Bertie. Steven Yeun also served as a primary cast member, with Nicole Byer, Richard E. Grant, and Reggie Watts, among those in recurring roles. Nevertheless, Netflix canceled the show in late July – two and a half months after its premiere – making it a slight surprise that it has found new life ten months after it seemingly ran out of breath.
Show creator Lisa Hanawalt took to Twitter to share the news of Adult Swim’s revival on Friday. There was little other information available, outside of the fact that a second season would be coming to the Cartoon Network programming block sometime in 2021. There are rumors that the episode count will be around the season 1 episode count of ten and that Haddish and Wong will both be returning, though none of that is confirmed yet. See Hanwalkt’s tweet below:
Netflix has previously saved network television shows from cancellation (Designated Survivor and Lucifer come to mind), but it’s rare for a canceled Netflix show to find a second act elsewhere. The only significant recent example is One Day at a Time, which was airing its fourth season on Pop TV before COVID-19 prevented the premiere of new episodes in recent weeks.
Netflix found success with animated programs like BoJack Horseman (which Hanawalt served as a producer and production designer for) and Big Mouth. While Tuca & Bertie didn’t find the same success with the streaming service, Adult Swim appears to be an ideal landing spot for the series, a place that has already seen plenty of success with Rick and Morty and Final Space, the latter of which originated at TBS. The hype machine will be in full force soon, as Tuca & Bertie may be as close as eight months away from airing new episodes.
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Source: Lisa Hanawalt/Twitter