Over the past few years, some of my favourite TV shows (particularly animated ones and those with deep story) have come to an end – by complete choice. Especially animated ones like Regular Show, Gravity Falls, Over the Garden Wall, etc. I’ve been thinking about this for a while but especially as the approaching end of my absolute favourite animated series, Adventure Time, nears ever closer. Whilst this angers dedicated audiences, many others, just as loving of a show, are happy and in support of studios’ choice. This topic has a lot to it and fascinates me. For example; Why do shows end by choice even though their rankings or following is not decreasing at all? How SHOULD a show end? How do producers bring justice to a show before it disappears from our screens? Most of all, I believe audiences who look deeper, like ourselves, as well as the regular every-day audience should understand the multitude of factors that bring a show to an end. There’s a multitude of answers and questions regarding this broader topic and I would love to see people’s opinions and comments on it!
I really like this question that you ask: Why do shows end by choice even though their rankings or following is not decreasing at all?
My sense is that if someone is set on telling a truly compelling story, that storyteller would want to be able to determine when and how the story ends, not leave the story's telling time up to something as arbitrary as whether or not the series will be continued or cancelled. – JamesBKelley5 years ago
Absolutely, I agree. I have such high respect for shows that end to complete the story etc rather than dragging it out for profit. Even though AT is my favourite show and I’ll be very sad to see it go, I’m glad they’re bringing it to an end due to story ☺️ I wish more audiences could understand these things – inkski5 years ago
I suggest you take a look at how Babylon 5 was planned out: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylon_5#Writing (for many references).
J. Michael Straczynski had the whole story planned in advance, but always kept "failsafes" in place. And then there was the whole mess with it being renewed at the last minute for a fifth season.
Also, sometimes you can't plan for everything. I an actor wants to/has to leave, there is only so much you can do. Especially if it is the main character or one of the main characters. – tanaod5 years ago
Sometimes, an Anime ends before it’s supposed to, or it ends in a poor way, a way devoid of any meaning. Surely it’s not just a decision on the part of the directors to discontinue it without giving a coherent ending. Anime like Pandora Hearts, Blood Lad, and Darker than Black gives that sort of vibe. Why does this happen, what options can a viewer explore if they want to satiate their hunger for more?
Some animes end because the viewer rating expectation is not fulfilled. Pandora Hearts is still ongoing as a manga, so technically it didn't end. It just wasn't funded in that medium. – Jill8 years ago
Yes, and that's sort of what I'm talking about. I know the manga is ongoing, but what caused viewer rating to go down? Why not give the first season an open-close ending and leave whether or not to continue on how things look later? – SpectreWriter8 years ago
This wouldn't have anything to do with how Gangsta ended? Because... that ended on a cliffhanger from what I heard. – DustinKop8 years ago
Often money or lack of money is the primary reason anime's end prematurely. Furthermore, the ratings for the anime could be too low to justify continuing. I think that the manga versions can sometimes be more successful than the anime, and vice versa. – Jiraiyan8 years ago
I agree with the previous comments. As with any series, even Western, live-action shows, anime end because of poor ratings. It's all about the bottom line! – txl8 years ago