Syfy has opted not to renew Happy! for a third season and Deadly Class for a second. Both shows are based on graphic novels and both are being shopped. Happy! comes from Syfy sibling UCP, while Deadly Class is from Sony Pictures TV, which co-produced with UCP.
After a breakout first season for Happy!, linear ratings for the quirky comedy/drama series, starring Christopher Meloni and featuring the voice of Patton Oswalt, dropped sharply in Season 2. But the hybrid live-action/animated series reportedly has been doing well in its second window on Netflix where it is said to be the streamer’s top performing second window drama, besides You, in key male demos and teens. You also was not doing well in its first-window linear run (on Lifetime), leading to the drama becoming a Netflix original for Season 2. Happy! producer UCP is shopping the show, and Netflix would be a natural home for it. Sources caution that for now, a pickup by Netflix appears unlikely but the studio’s efforts are ongoing.
Linear ratings for high school assassin drama Deadly Class have been stronger but reportedly not strong enough for a series Syfy does not fully own where the threshold for profitability is higher. Sony Pictures TV will be shopping the series to other outlets.
With the two cancellations, Syfy’s remaining series are returning hits Krypton and The Magicians, Killjoys, which is headed into its final season, Van Helsing, as well as Wynonna Earp, which has been renewed but its fate is in limbo because of financial problems for its producer IDW. Coming up is new Syfy drama series Resident Alien. The network also has two scripted pilots in consideration, (Future) Cult Classic and Cipher, and a number of projects in development.
Happy! got off to a strong start. Its December 2017 series premiere set a new benchmark for Syfy in Live+3 ratings with 1.708 million viewers in total viewers and 779,000 adults 18-49, ranking as the network’s best series premiere since The Magicians in January 2016 across all key demos. In addition, the premiere opened strong on social, drawing more than 212 million impressions on Twitter.
Based on Grant Morrison and Darick Robertson’s graphic novel of the same name, Happy! follows Nick Sax (Meloni) – an intoxicated, corrupt ex-cop turned hit man – who is adrift in a world of casual murder, soulless sex and betrayal. After a hit gone wrong, his inebriated life is forever changed by a tiny, relentlessly positive, imaginary blue winged horse named Happy (Oswalt).
Happy! is executive produced by Morrison and Brian Taylor, who co-wrote the pilot teleplay, as well as Neal Moritz, Pavun Shetty and Toby Jaffe of Original Film, Meloni and showrunner Patrick Macmanus.
Syfy released the entire premiere episode of Deadly Class, based on the graphic novel by Rick Remender and Wes Craig, weeks ahead of its linear debut in January.
Set in a dark, heightened world against the backdrop of late 80s counter culture, Deadly Class follows the story of Marcus (Benjamin Wadsworth), a teen living on the streets who is recruited into Kings Dominion, an elite private academy where the world’s top crime families send their next generations. Maintaining his moral code while surviving a ruthless curriculum, vicious social cliques and his own adolescent uncertainties soon proves to be vital. Benedict Wong, Lana Condor, María Gabriela de Faría, Luke Tennie, Liam James, and Michel Duval also star.
From Sony Pictures Television and UCP, Deadly Class was adapted for television by Remender and Miles Orion Feldsott, who serve as executive producers alongside Joe Russo, Anthony Russo, Mike Larocca and Mick Betancourt . Remender, Feldsott and Betancourt share showrunner duties on the series.