Syfy's anthology series Channel Zero may be one of the best horror shows on television, but there just weren't enough people watching. After four seasons, the network has chosen to end the critically-acclaimed series. Inspired by popular "creepypasta" tales found on the internet, each season of the show consisted of six episodes and was based on separate stories. All four seasons were very well-received by viewers and critics, but the show was still one of the lowest-rated programs on the network. Taking to Instagram, series creator Nick Antosca confirmed the cancellation of the show in a statement. While clearly unhappy with the network's choice, Antosca appreciates the creative opportunities the show had afforded him.
"After 4 seasons, Channel Zero is no more at SYFY. I loved making this show and I would have loved to do more... but I can't complain too much about doing 4 stories I loved with people who I loved working with: People like our writers, our actors, our extraordinary crew, the artists who contributed, our editors and post team, our composer Jeff Russo, our team at Syfy and UCP. And especially the four awesome directors, Craig Macneill, Steven Piet, Arkasha Stevenson, and Evan Katz. And before all that, the authors of the original creepypasta stories. Kris Straub, Brian Russell, Kerry Hammond, and Charlotte Bywater. I'm deeply grateful for this experience. Especially to everybody who watched and talked about and wrote about the show. There are stories we didn't get to tell and creatures you didn't get to see, but still might. Meanwhile, the first 3 seasons are currently on Shudder, and the 4th season will be soon. Enjoy."
At the beginning, Syfy had ordered two standalone seasons of Channel Zero. Based on Kris Straub's story "Candle Cove," the freshman season was directed by Craig William Macneill with Paul Schneider and Fiona Shaw starring. It tells the story of a child psychologist investigating the 1980's disappearance of his younger brother and its possible connection to a mysterious children's program that aired around the same time. Season 2's "No-End House" was based on a story of the same name by Brian Russell, with Steven Piet directing. Unrelated to the first season, its plot focused on a group of friends visiting a house of horrors with each room they explore more dangerous than the last. Both seasons were big hits with critics, with "Candle Cove" earning a 86% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes with "No-End House" getting a perfect 100% score.
With both seasons earning plenty of praise, Syfy renewed the show for seasons 3 and 4. Inspired by Kerry Hammond's "Search and Rescue Woods," season 3 was directed by Arkasha Stevenson. Titled "Butcher's Block," it's about a pair of sisters moving to a new city where they meet a strange family, uncovering their connection to the strange disappearances of the town's residents. Like season 2, it earned a perfect 100% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes. Finally, what turned out to be the show's fourth and final season was inspired by Charlotte Bywater's "Hidden Door" and directed by E. L. Katz. Given an 83% fresh Rotten Tomatoes score, The Dream Door is about two newlyweds who discover a strange door in their basement which brings out their biggest secrets.
What's curious about Antosca's statement is his suggestion that fans "might" see more stories from the Channel Zero universe. The suggestion here is that the show may resume elsewhere, if another network or streaming service chooses to pick it up. Given the following it has and the immense critical acclaim, it's certainly possible the show could continue at a new home. Still, because of the low ratings it was pulling in at Syfy, there's no guarantee another network would be willing to take a chance on it.
Shudder subscribers can binge the first three seasons of Channel Zero, with The Dream Door being added to the service soon. This might be the end of Antosca's series, but anyone who missed the series when it was airing on Syfy should definitely give it a chance. Perhaps if enough interest is restored in the show in the wake of its cancellation, it could be given an order of new episodes on a new network. You can take a look at Antosca's statement about the show's cancellation on Instagram below.