‘Queens’: Why Was the Show Canceled?

Queens won’t be getting a shot at a comeback. The TV show, which starred Brandy, Eve, Naturi Naughton, and Nadine Velazquez as ’90s girl group members who reunite for a second chance at fame after their falling out two decades earlier, has been canceled after one season. Here’s what we know about why Queens was canceled.

Brandy, Nadine Velazquez, Naturi Naughton, Pepi Sonuga, and Eve on the now-canceled show 'Queens'
‘Queens’ stars, Brandy, Nadine Velazquez, Naturi Naughton, Pepi Sonuga, and Eve | Kim Simms/Getty Images

‘Queens’ was canceled after only a season

Released in October of 2021, the show had impressive numbers in its pilot episode and a talented cast to match. But that wasn’t enough to save it. Multiple outlets reported on May 6 that ABC had canceled the show after only a season.

Show creator Zahir McGhee confirmed the cancelation of Queens on Twitter.

“So.. got word today that we won’t be continuing with #QueensABC,” McGhee wrote in a note. “While the news is disheartening because of the tremendous work hundreds of people put into the show, I’m grateful for what was an incredible journey with so many talented people. I’m proud of the stories we told, the incredible music we made, and what our show looked like in front and behind the camera.”

McGhee continued to express appreciation for those involved in the show.

“To Eve, Brandy, Naturi, Nadine, Taylor [Selé] and Pepi [Sonuga] – thank you,” McGhee added. “I never could have imagined that I’d get to work alongside so many current and future legends. Dreamy stuff. Endless gratitude to my partners at ABC for supporting the show until the end. Lastly, MAJOR love to the Queens fans. You are the absolute best and I’m bummed that we don’t get to spend any more Tuesday nights together. However, the show lives forever. The music lives forever. In short, #QueensForever.”

‘Queens’ faced several challenges before ABC canceled it

Although Queens had a strong start, Deadline reports that its ratings suffered from “competing programming.” It also mentions other possible factors, including Eve’s sudden departure. The “Gotta Man” rapper was written out mid-season as a result of her real-life pregnancy, leaving fans to wonder about her future on the show. Whatever the case, by the time of the finale, only a million viewers had tuned in to watch, per The Hollywood Reporter.

ABC put the show on the bubble, giving fans a sliver of hope for a Queens Season 2. However, THR reports that it was not “expected to return.”

Brandy had said she hoped the show would continue to showcase more of the things they were unable to do in Queens Season 1.

“I know I would love to see more performances, more rapping, and more stage stuff if there is a Season 2. We didn’t really get a chance to do a lot of the stage performances that I wanted to do this year,” she told Deadline. “I hope we get to tell more great stories and have a lot more entertainment in terms of the group. Fingers crossed.”

How the ‘Queens’ cast reacted to the news of the show’s cancelation

It seems most of the cast of Queens has not publicly commented on the show’s cancelation. But Naughton, who played Jill Da Thrill, did address the news, expressing her gratitude for the experience on Instagram.

“Well… #QUEENS is not coming back y’all, but we still have our crowns 👑 !” she wrote. “Thanks to all the fans who took the journey back to 1999 with us… sadly @queensabc has been cancelled 😔 but I am still grateful for the experience!”

She continued:

“#JILLDATHRILL was Soo much fun to play! And I MEAN, working alongside legendary #queens like @brandy & @therealeve was surreal for me! The lil jersey girl in me is still jumping inside❤️🔥 and @nadinevelazquez who dove right in to the hip hop shenanigans! We gave it our ALL ladies! I’m proud of us! 💪🏾❤️To this crew & the rest of my awesome cast mates @taylorsele @pepisonuga @felishavictoriaterrell @remyma 🔥 y’all made me a better performer & a stronger person!”

Although she’s saddened to see the show ending, she promised: “I’ll see you again soon one day.”

Queens is streaming now on ABC and Hulu.

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