‘Outer Range’ Is Greenlit For Season 2 But Returns With A New Showrunner

There’s good and bad news on the “Outer Range” front, Prime Video’s excellent, Western/metaphysical sci-fi show starring Josh Brolin, Imogen Poots, and an outstanding supporting cast. The good news: the critically acclaimed “The Outer Range”—which we adored, it’s one of the best shows of the year—but the bad news is that its original showrunner and creator Brian Watkins has been replaced. Instead, Charles Murray (“True Story,” “Sons of Anarchy,” “Luke Cage”), who has an overall deal with Amazon Studios, will come aboard as showrunner and executive producer for season two.

READ MORE: ‘The Outer Range’ Review: Josh Brolin, Cowboys, Faith, Family & Unknowable Metaphysical Sci-Fi Makes An Enthralling Mix

While Watkins will retain an executive producer credit, EP credits can mean many things, and usually not a lot; a token gesture to retain some points for creating the show. Prime Video had no statement on whether he would remain on the show as a writer.

“Outer Range” centers on a rancher (Brolin) fighting for his land and family who discovers an unfathomable mystery at the edge of Wyoming’s wilderness. Suffice it to say it might sound a little bit like “Yellowstone,” a family drama, off the top, but then it quickly ventures into something like that mixed with “The Twilight Zone,”The X-Files,” and existential and spiritual questions about life and faith.

READ MORE: ‘Outer Range’: Brian Watkins Discusses The Power Of The Unknown In His Amazing New Sci-Fi Western [Bingeworthy Podcast]

The terrific supporting cast includes Lili Taylor, Tamara Podemski, Tom Pelphrey, Lewis Pullman, Noah Reid, Shaun Sipos, Isabel Arraiza, Olive Abercrombie, and Will Patton, among others.

The apprehension about the second season is the show’s mysteriously complexity that many hope won’t be lost in season two; this is a show that, so far, has no easy answers. For months, fans online have speculated and worried that “Outer Range” was just too esoteric for mainstream audiences and was canceled. It’s also possible Watkins, a playwright by trade, wasn’t experienced as a first-time showrunner. But are they going to smooth over the edges of this exciting show in favor of something a little bit simpler? That would be a shame, and it would instantly show, but I guess time will tell, and maybe we should be grateful now that the show has been renewed.

“Outer Range” comes from executive producers Charles Murray, Heather Rae, Josh Brolin, Zev Borow, Brian Watkins, Tony Krantz, and Plan B Entertainment for Amazon Studios. Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, and Ernest McNealey executive produce on behalf of Plan B.