"Schitt's Creek," the CBC show about a rich family relocating to a podunk town that has become an international phenomenon, will end after one more season.
The announcement came from the show's creators, father-and-son duo Dan and Eugene Levy.
"It's not lost on us what a rare privilege it is in this industry to get to decide when your show should take its final bow," the younger Levy posted on Twitter. "We could never have dreamed that our fans would grow to love and care about these characters in the way that you have."
To Our Dear Fans... pic.twitter.com/FIXjD3gbzA— dan levy (@danjlevy) March 21, 2019
"Schitt's Creek" debuted in 2015 to lukewarm reviews. The show is about a wealthy family who lose their fortunes and have to relocate to a tiny town they once bought as a joke. Watching spoiled rich people fail to understand a more low-key life didn't necessarily feel particularly fresh to many critics at first.
But as the show went on and the characters were fleshed out in increasingly idiosyncratic ways, it found its footing by building its own distinctly funny, sarcastic-but-loving, entirely weird world. The solid performances by comedy dream-team Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara also helped. As Moira, a former soap-opera matriarch with an extensive wig collection, a fanciful vocabulary, and an unplaceable accent, O'Hara was especially great, and Moira's ad for fruit wine is indisputably one of the show's legacies.
The bit players are strong, too, as townspeople who are justifiably confused by the kinds of people who wear a black feathered top hat to visit a farm. And we'd be remiss not to mention Annie Murphy, who plays daughter Alexis: her comedic timing and impeccable pronunciation of "ew" has become its own phenomenon.
Another refreshing aspect of the show is its sexual inclusivity. David, the son played by Dan Levy, is pansexual. In season 3 he's given a male love interest, Patrick (Noah Reid). There are highs and lows in their relationship, but homophobia isn't one of them: refreshingly, they exist in a universe where same-sex relationships are no more unusual than heterosexual ones.
This was a deliberate choice by Dan Levy, who is gay.
"I've just seen one too many queer stories that revolve around the opinions of other people — coloured by the opinions of straight people, homophobic people, bigoted people, intolerant people — and I didn't want to go there with this,'' he's said in past interviews.
"What we're able to show is a joyful relationship. I think at the end of the day I don't want to waste my time writing hateful people into my show. For me that is, I guess my sort of quiet protest. That's me showing the world that I want to live in, and I think it's important to show that world.''
This inclusive world was on full display in a recent episode, where Patrick comes out to his parents. They're initially upset — but it turns out it's not because he's in a relationship with a man, but because he didn't feel like he could talk to them about it.
That hopeful affirmation made it "easily the best episode of the season," according to Vulture. "This episode is a precious little nugget of television and we should treasure it always."
"Schitt's Creek" is also one of few Canadian shows to break through to mainstream success outside of the country with rave reviews in the New York Times, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, and the New Yorker, among others.
In an interview with the Canadian Press, Dan Levy said he hopes the show's final season will "tell the funniest, the sweetest, the most joyful episodes of our show we've ever told.''
And he added that the story isn't necessarily over.
"I would never say that this is the end. If we get an idea somewhere down the line that feels fresh and necessary and relevant, I would absolutely entertain any form of revisiting these lovely, strange characters.''
With files from The Canadian Press
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