Fans of Cinemax’s acclaimed historical medical drama The Knick have been stuck in a proverbial waiting room anticipating news about Season 3 since the Season 2 finale aired back on December of 2015. However, the drama, which starred Clive Owen and brandished Hollywood heavy helmer Steven Soderbergh, just received a bad prognosis: cancellation.
Indeed, an official statement from Cinemax has confirmed the cancellation The Knick, giving fans the disappointing news. While some auspicious signs for a renewal were out there initially, they were all for naught. The reason for this unfortunate fate was not due to Cinemax being knackered by The Knick, but, rather, an apparent drive by the premium cable outlet away from prestige projects in lieu of more conventional action-based shows. As Kary Antholis, president of Cinemax programming and HBO miniseries’ explains in the statement:
“After a critically acclaimed two-season run of The Knick on Cinemax, we will not be going forward with additional episodes of the series. Despite our pride in and affection for the series, as well as our respect for and gratitude towards Steven Soderbergh and his team, we have decided to return Cinemax to its original primetime series fare of high-octane action dramas, many of which will be internationally co-produced.”
Antholis tells no tall tale when referring to The Knick as “critically acclaimed.” The series achieved numerous Awards Season wins in its 2014-2015 run, notably a 2015 Primetime Emmy win for the (rather esoteric) category of “Outstanding Production Design for a Narrative Period Program (One Hour or More)” – yes, all that. It also nabbed star Clive Owen a 2015 Golden Globe nomination for “Best Actor in a Television Series.”
Set in a New York City hospital in 1900, The Knick starred Clive Owen as the quasi-biographically-based Dr. John Thackery, a crimson-covered, pre-Penicillin era surgeon battling the personal demons of cocaine and opium addition and burgeoning responsibilities as a staff leader, all while pursuing his own ambitious attempts to become a pioneer in the medical field. While the Season 2 finale depicted what was believed to be a cliffhanger moment (forgoing spoilers), it appears that fans will now have to take said shocking moment as the series’ proper ending.
Nevertheless, it seems that The Knick will go down in history as a beloved casualty of its own weight.