Netflix smashes Altered Carbon's stack, cancels sci-fi series after two seasons

Altered Carbon: season 2
(Image credit: Netflix)

Netflix has pulled the plug on its much-hyped cyberpunk series Altered Carbon after two seasons and an animated movie, as revealed in an exclusive report from Deadline.

According to the report, it's believed that the show's cancellation "is not Covid-related but stems from the streamer’s standard viewership vs. cost renewal review process." 

In other words, the number of viewers the show's second season managed to retain did not justify the cost of producing a third season in Netflix's eyes.

What went wrong?

Despite a stellar first season, Altered Carbon's second season was not as well-received by viewers, with many fans bemoaning the show's lowered budget and changes in cast and showrunner as the reasons for its fall from grace.

Picking up 30 years after the first season's conclusion, Altered Carbon: Season 2 saw actor Anthony Mackie (The Falcon and the Winter Soldier) replace Joel Kinnaman (The Suicide Squad) as lead character Takeshi Kovacs.

While the casting shake-up fit perfectly with the futuristic body-swapping theme of the show, the change in tone it brought did make the show's second season arguably feel like an entirely different series in the eyes of fans.

Stephen Lambrechts
Senior Journalist, Phones and Entertainment

Stephen primarily covers phones and entertainment for TechRadar's Australian team, and has written professionally across the categories of tech, film, television and gaming in both print and online for over a decade. He's obsessed with smartphones, televisions, consoles and gaming PCs, and has a deep-seated desire to consume all forms of media at the highest quality possible. 

He's also likely to talk a person’s ear off at the mere mention of Android, cats, retro sneaker releases, travelling and physical media, such as vinyl and boutique Blu-ray releases. Right now, he's most excited about QD-OLED technology, The Batman and Hellblade 2: Senua's Saga.