HBO Max Just Canceled The Best Superhero Show

Doom Patrol's upcoming fourth season, releasing this year in two separate chunks of six episodes, will be its last.

By TeeJay Small | Published

doom patrol
The cast of Doom Patrol

In yet another in a long string of cancelations across the streaming service, HBO Max has announced that Doom Patrol has been canceled after four seasons. This comes after months of DC projects being axed, scrapped, or generally wiped from continuity following both a giant corporate merger and a significant shift in leadership amongst the DC cinematic universe. Though Variety reports the show’s cancelation is not directly tied to the Warner Bros. Discovery merger, it’s hard not to see the decision as part of a larger pattern.

Often referred to as one of the best superhero shows on television, Doom Patrol touts an all star cast of Brendan Fraser, Diane Guerrero, April Bowlby, and many other talented performers, bringing some of DC’s most complicated characters to life. The show premiered in 2019 on the now defunct DC Universe streaming service before being transferred to the soon to be defunct HBO Max streaming service. Amidst the ongoing changes in Warner Bros. Discovery’s business plans, HBO Max is scheduled to shut down this summer in order to combine with Discovery+ as an unnamed new service.

This announcement comes alongside an announcement that Doom Patrol‘s sister show Titans has also been canceled, with both shows set to premiere their final 6 episodes later this year. The shows were apparently both given advanced notice that the fourth season would be their last, providing proper endings to their stories by splitting the final seasons into 12 episodes split into two parts. Splitting the final season of a hit show into two separate parts has become somewhat of a norm in recent years, from hit AMC shows such as Better Call Saul and The Walking Dead, dating back to the 2007 final season of HBO’s The Sopranos.

brendan fraser
Brendan Fraser in Doom Patrol

The news also coincides with the recent shakeup in leadership among DC, as James Gunn and Peter Safran have taken control over the creative direction of the franchise. Perhaps the duo have plans to bring our favorite Doom Patrol characters to the big screen in some capacity, but for now there’s been no update on the overall game plan. James Gunn announced recently that he’s planning on outlining the next several years of the DC timeline to the public before the end of January.

For Brendan Fraser, a fan favorite of the Doom Patrol’s cast, this news won’t be career defining, as his gripping performance in Darren Aronofsky’s The Whale was recently nominated for an Academy Award in a career resurgence as spectacular as Robert Downey Jr.’s. Still, the show’s producers took the time to put out a statement thanking the cast and crew for their excellent work over the past few years, while humorously poking fun at how much they were able to get away with, often taking the show into dark and unfriendly territory many super hero products are not able to depict.

While Doom Patrol and Titans are canceled, DC’s Batgirl was announced dead on arrival, being shelved in the basement of David Zaslav’s office, destined to survive on scraps and never be viewed by the general public. The animated Harley Quinn series seems to be the only DC product currently unscathed, as it was announced back in August that the show was renewed for another season.