The petition to save Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop series nears 100,000 signatures
The cult 1990s anime was reborn as a live-action adaptation in 2021, and cancelled by the streamer less than a month later.
Shinichiro Watanabe’s original Cowboy Bebop — an animated space-age action series full of ramen, western-style shoot-outs and ultra-smart corgis — was heralded as a masterpiece when it aired in the late 90s. Though the 2021 Netflix reboot debuted to some more, uh, mixed reviews, the live-action adaptation, starring Korean actor John Cho, was watched for a whopping 74 million hours in its first week. When the show got cancelled last month, its fans were devastated. So, they did what any stan worth their salt would do — they started a petition demanding to bring it back for another season.
Now, about a month later, the change.org petition has been signed almost 100,000 times. For scale and context, if this petition had been about a change to the law or to government policy, it would have to have been debated in Parliament. Personally, we think they should still do it: Boris Johnson, your silence on this matter is deafening. But politics aside, it seems like Netflix should probably reconsider its decision, or at least make some kind of further statement as to why it decided to axe the show.
“It wasn’t a direct copy of the anime but the world they put together was amazing and deserves a second season,” wrote Ryan Proffer, the fan who started the petition. The show’s team, of course, appear to agree with the general sentiment. On Twitter, following the announcement of Netflix’s decision, co-executive producer Javier Grillo-Marxuach said: “I truly loved working on this. It came from a real and pure place of respect and affection. I wish we could make what we planned for a second season, but you know what they say, men plan, God laughs.” He’s right and he should say it.
In the figurative Netflix graveyard, there are currently 68 bodies. The streaming platform is merciless in its annual cull of its own original shows, and over the eight years it has been making content in-house, some real gems have been taken to the chopping block. There was the unjustifiable cancellation of Sense8, a queer, visionary sci-fi series by the creators of The Matrix trilogy that was unceremoniously dumped, no less, on the very first day of Pride Month in 2017. And we’ll never forgive them for cutting the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina short, and sticking us with that weird and sad show ending. For the sake of (nearly) 100,000 people, let’s pray that Bebop gets a second chance.