Last suppers have already been served: Netflix has officially cancelled its zombie comedy Santa Clarita Diet after just three seasons of the show.
Season 3 dropped on the streaming service on 29 March this year. Netflix famously never reveals its viewing figures, but it sounds as though the show’s audience wasn’t quite big enough to bring it back to life for a Season 4.
Santa Clarita Diet comes from showrunner Victor Fresco, and is led by stars Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant, which is all the more reason why we’re surprised by the cancellation.
“The world had never known a ‘zom-com’ until Santa Clarita Diet, and we’re indebted to creator Victor Fresco for bringing this idea to Netflix,” said the streamer. “To their endless credit, the incredible Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant were totally game, with an uncanny knack for comedy that brought Sheila and Joel Hammond to vibrant life, even though one of them was undead. We’re grateful to Victor, Drew and Timothy, along with fellow executive producers Tracy Katsky, Aaron Kaplan, Chris Miller and Ember Truesdell and the terrific cast, including Liv Hewson and Skyler Gisondo, and crew for three hilarious seasons for Netflix members to discover for years to come.”
The series followed Olyphant and Barrymore as married couple Joel and Shiela Hammond, real estate agents and residents of Santa Clarita, California. The couple comes up against it when Shiela is turned into a zombie and begins to crave human flesh, all the while trying to deal with neighbours, clients and mythological mysteries.
In a joint statement, Fresco and executive producer Tracy Katsky said: “Like our audience, we were all-in on Sheila and Joel. Their relationship, in the face of incredible adversity, was inspiring to write and to watch. Mostly, they were funny, which in a comedy is important. Working with Drew and Tim, along with the immensely talented Liv and Skyler, was a joy and a once in a lifetime experience.
“Netflix took a chance on this odd show and for that we will always be grateful. They were supportive, ever positive, and appreciative of our work. Until about noon today. Still, they were just one phone call away from being a perfect studio. Not bad. Everything ends. This was a thing. And so it ended. We’ll miss it but are proud of the work we did and will always appreciate the love and enthusiasm we felt from our audience. If it was up to them, Sheila and Joel would continue for another 10,000 years.”
Barrymore and Olyphant did more than just star in the show: they were also executive producers.
“Of all of the characters I’ve ever been, Sheila Hammond is one of my favorites,” said Barrymore. “She and Joel were an amazing couple, who had shared goals. And I am lucky to have worked alongside Tim Olyphant. It was an honour to get to do something so delightful. Sheila lives forever in me. And I am grateful to Victor Fresco, who created a world so unique.”
“I loved working on this show,” added Olyphant. “I’m going to continue coming in and doing scenes. If they don’t want to film it, that’s up to them.”
Santa Clarita Diet is available to stream now on Netflix. Get all the latest sci-fi news with every issue of SciFiNow.