A decade ago, it was pretty easy to understand the reasons behind a TV network canceling a series. Normally, it all just came down to numbers, and the weekly ratings would give folks a clear indicator of which shows were doing well and which weren’t. Now, with streaming keeping those viewership numbers hidden, cancellations of TV series feel sudden and without any sort of justification. That’s exactly what happened this weekend when it was announced that “High Fidelity” was canceled by Hulu. And that confusion/anger has led to Zoe Kravitz voicing a bit of frustration.
How are we supposed to know the reasons behind the cancellation of “High Fidelity” when Hulu doesn’t release numbers? Are we supposed to assume that the show isn’t popular with viewers? Is Hulu unhappy with the direction of the show? Were there contractual issues? These questions have no answers and this is what leads to some upset fans and rampant internet speculation, as we have seen.
And fans’ problems with the cancellation of “High Fidelity” wasn’t assuaged when the series’ star Zoe Kravitz took to social media to confirm the news and throw a bit of shade at the streaming service that gave it the ax. In a post on Instagram, the actress wrote, “i wanna give a shout out to my #highfidelity family. thank you for all the love and heart you put into this show. i’m in awe of all of you. and thank you to everyone who watched, loved and supported us. ✌???? #breakupssuck”
Sure, “High Fidelity” wasn’t the best series of 2020, but it is a pretty great Hulu series that sports an amazing cast and felt like a breath of fresh air in a world filled with mediocre shit. You can tell the series had its fans by the outpouring of support on the Instagram post from Kravitz, included a comment from Tessa Thompson. But it’s Kravitz’s response to the comment that is really interesting.
She replied to Thompson being upset over the cancellation by saying, “it’s cool. At least hulu has a ton of other shows starring women of color we can watch. oh wait.”
Hulu does have its fair share of quality programming including some female-led series. There’s “The Handmaid’s Tale,” which stars Elisabeth Moss. Then you have “Shrill” featuring Aidy Bryant. Oh, I see what she means. To be fair, there is “Pen15,” which might be the best of the bunch and that does have Maya Erskine as a co-lead. But yeah, there aren’t a lot of options if you’re looking for series on Hulu with Black female leads. Well, except “High Fidelity.”
Maybe it’s that sort of comment that will make Hulu want to diversify even more as it grows. Clearly, this is the type of discourse that could lead to change and hopefully, it does. Until then, you can always rewatch Kravitz’s series.