'Rubicon' is cancelled by AMC: Big mistake, AMC!

AMC has announced the cancellation of Rubicon after its first season.

Here’s the network’s statement: “Rubicon gave us an opportunity to tell a rich and compelling story, and we’re proud of the series.  This was not an easy decision, but we are grateful to have had the opportunity to work with such a phenomenally talented and dedicated team.”

This is bad news for those of us who became enthralled by Rubicon‘s intricate tale of a small cadre of government data system analysts led by James Badge Dale. Yes, the first few episodes were slow going, and doubtless were responsible for many viewers giving up early, resulting in low ratings.

But by the end of its run, Rubicon had become a tense, witty brain-teaser, full of vivid personalities. Boy, was I looking forward to seeing how the show’s ongoing conspiracy (and a new season’s new cases) might turn out.

I know AMC is thrilled with its big ratings for The Walking Dead, and I’m not pitting one show against another, but I wish the network had found a place on its schedule for two such different new shows. After all, Mad Men and Breaking Bad are as different as possible, right?

I’ll mourn the loss of Rubicon at greater length soon.

Will any of you miss Rubicon?

Twitter: @kentucker



Comments (358 total) Add your comment
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  • john

    tried to watch….just couldn’t get into it

    • jack hart

      amen brother. watching paint to dry was MORE fascinating then watching Rubicon’s 1st episode

      • Lisa Simpson

        Yeah, I don’t mind taking a little time to get into things, but there has to be something to latch onto, an interesting character, a new take on things. But I can’t remember a single thing from the premier.

      • SueN

        Yep, I tried, but the first episode episode didn’t offer me anything to make me want to tune in again. I can do dark, but not dark and boring.

      • David T

        I saw the first episode (promo freebie on Hulu as I do not have cable) and found it very interesting, definitely full of potential. Sad to see it go.

        We seem to be moving away from ‘thinking’ shows more and more. People will invest in a movie like that, but a television show, which has a season to create such a labyrinth of questions and mind-flexing plots, well that is too much. Lost was able to succeed because it had a love triangle/quadrangle going on, plus stuff blowing up. Fast Forward could not, and I am not sure the X Files would have a shot these days unless Mulder and Scully had more sexual tension.

    • Martin

      It was a bad show that thought being slow and boring meant it was smart.

      • martins mom

        martin, you forgot to take your adhd medicine again. now get back inside and watch your two and a half men. these are grown ups talking here.

      • Martin’s Grandmother

        Martin is allowed to express his opinion. At least he’s smart enough to use proper grammar.

      • martins mom

        oh honey. Just because he’s idiot savant with grammar doesn’t mean he’s not an idiot elsewhere. I gave birth to the child. Let me handle him. You go ahead back to the nursing home where we prefer to forget about you. I’ll deal with this little monster of mine. Martin… GET IN THE CAGE!

      • Martin’s father

        Martin – listen to your mother. And stop bothering me.

      • Any More Crap?

        Rubicon fans are apparently very condescending and immature.

      • Kimo

        Not enough explosions for you?

      • mfbattle

        Not enough story for me. Not enough believable characters either.

      • Martin’s conscience

        I really need to stop touching myself…

    • JAM

      AMC is done, I heard they just got an envelope in the mail with a 4 leaf clover in it.

      • vamalford

        That’s hilarious! Spot on!

      • Lyn

        HAHA! I will miss the creative tension of the show, which somehow distracted me from the tension in my own life.

      • Brian

        I actually LedOL when I read this! Great response!

      • SoCal Fan

        That was REALLY funny LOL

      • Annie

        LOL — spot on!
        My frustration was it took FOREVER to get into the plot. I gave up after the 7th episode and stopped watching.

      • Shiny

        Was it a mistake? Or was it a cleverly disguised ruse by AMC to trick unsuspecting fans into rallying to save the show and uncover yet more mysteries wrapped in enigmas? Hmmmm…think about it.

    • Jim

      A series like “Rubicon” is simply not a money-maker because it doesn’t appeal to “general” audiences. It really reminds me of the 1995 series “Nowhere Man” that suffered a similar fate: It was interesting, slow at times, and took some real thought to get into it, but by the end of the first season, it was engaging. “Nowhere Man” also didn’t get the ratings, and despite its loyal fan base, it was canceled leaving everyone hanging.

      I wish they at least would have done a “Blake’s 7″ and just killed off everyone in the last episode. At least it wold have provides some closure!

      • plasmatron

        Agreed. ‘Nowhere Man’ is actually one of my all-time favorite TV dramas. It was stellar. But part of the reason it failed in the ratings was due to its appearance on UPN’s first season of shows, as well as UPN’s insipid promo spots for the show, which touted the show as some sort of almost comedic adventure, instead of the rich, detailed, evolving storyline drama that it was. I watched ‘Nowhere Man’ on DVD again recently, and it still holds up for me. ‘Rubicon’ was interesting, but much slower.

      • Brian

        I miss Nowhere Man! I keep hoping someone will revive it!

      • M

        If ever there was a show that should be “rebooted” it’s Nowhere Man. It definitely suffered from not being made in the age of DVR, streaming online episodes and TV on DVD. Loved that show. Loved Rubicon, too, and will miss it.

    • jared4ever

      I refused to give up on this show right until the end. And I still never really got hooked. I’m OK with it being cancelled.

    • Noelbelle

      It started WAY too slow. I kept giving it chances…a lot more than I normally would have. The second half of the season was great, but I don’t blame people at all for giving up on it after the first few episodes.

    • kgb

      Too many American idiots with ADD. Missed out on a great show. I will probably not watch any other shows on AMC again.

    • tom

      At first I was bored but I stuck with it and was hooked. I hate they cancelled it. But yet The Simpsons is on season 23. Go figure

      • Lorena

        He really was. I think I read in an intrveiew that this was Michael Cristofer’s (Spangler) first gig in a LONG time, by choice. His portrayal of Spangler was chilling, yet mesmerizing. I always looked forward to him as well as Kale (Arliss Howard). I really enjoyed how specific they were with the characters. Everything was spot-on. Will definitely purchase this series on DVD. Brilliant, but cancelled.

  • b

    so sad Rubicon got cancelled. I really hoped AMC would give it a chance to continue building an audience. Both Mad Men and Breaking Bad built a large part of their audience during hiatus (Breaking Bad especially. look at the numbers between season two and season three).

    • Amy

      I am so discouraged that Rubicon was cancelled. Smart shows just don’t last in a country where people are proud to be dimwits. Oh well, is there any chance the producers will continue the series and we can watch it on demand or video down the line?

      • Kafa

        Agreed, there were many plot holes it really was not well-written at all. It was also not well cast. It had fastantic cinematography, which is pretty much all it had going for it. Even that became tedious after a while; watching nothing happen for 15 minutes eventually gets on your nerves.It was self-indulgent, and pseudo-intellectual. It appealed to those who wanted to appear intelligent and elitist. At the end of the day, it was the worst-paced show in the history of TV, and otherwise mediocre if well shot.It deserved to die.

  • stella

    NO! I knew it. Way too smart for average viewer.

    • Daw Johnson

      Classic nonsense argument (especially in this case–it’s on a network with the smartest, most high-brow shows on TV). Show just wasn’t that good, and the premiere did NOTHING to capture any attention.

      • Snsetblaze

        Yes, I have to agree. I really could not get into the show. I tried again and I like the actor Dallas Roberts.

      • Dwight Schrute

        Daw, I think lowest common denominator crap like Law and Order is more your style. Put on the popcorn and turn off your brain!
        Yee haw!!!

      • ShotgunSamurai

        Seriously Rubicon fans are sooooooo stuck up!

      • trifoi

        I remember the premiere so vividly, like it was yesterday. I remember loving David Haddas and figuring out he was going to die. I remember the smart writing of his character, with the superstitions and the broom he kept from the janitor. I also remember the train hitting his train and Tanya’s first day at the office and so many more things. I loved them all, they were one of the most amazing group of characters I’ve ever met.

    • Martin

      When was it smart? The silly baseball code? That would have taken a child less than a minute to work out!

      • martins mom

        But Martin, you’re a child. My Child and you drool on yourself as you watch old David Spade movies. I’m not proud of you. Let these people talk about the show that they care about and if you promise to be quiet, i’ll let you have some more twinkies for that fat little face of yours. Oh look! Black Sheep is on again. It’s your favorite. Probably because you’re our black sheep. Now run along you little burden and let us grown ups have our talk.

      • Martin’s Grandmother

        I’m sending Martin’s mom to her room. She obviously does not know how to engage in intelligent debate.

      • martins mom

        this –
        “When was it smart? The silly baseball code? That would have taken a child less than a minute to work out!”
        is not an intelligent debate dear. This is what we call trolling. Which is also what I’m doing by responding to your idiotic complaints that no one asked for. Now please – back to the old folks home with you or we’ll stop sending you those yummy peppermint candies you so adore.

      • Martin’s father

        Granny has nothing better to do now that Everyone Loves Raymond and Matlock are off the air.

    • Sandy

      I suspect you’re right, judging from most of the crap on TV that never gets cancelled; there must be a lot of people who don’t have the intelligence enough to follow such a show. But I did think there were some brains at AMC…but apparently not so much.

  • Chris

    I really liked this show. watched the first half of the season and have been meaning to catch the end but never got around to it. feel a little guilty about that now…

  • meels

    Yes! It was a thinking person’s program.

  • Lily

    Nooooooo! I LOVED this show!! Such a shame.

  • Russ

    I’m sorry, but the team was pretty dim-witted. We had barely more information than them, but we were miles ahead. They seemed not to be able to do their research (reading) when Will wasn’t around. The only interesting characters were the bad guys, and the conspiracy turned out to be the same old thing. You can’t just have nerdy, slow, subtle storytelling without giving the audience some kind of reward.

    • Tim Powers

      Have fun watching Medium and Ghost Whisperer reruns!

      • ShotgunSamurai

        Another stuck up Rubicon fan. My god people just because someone didn’t like the glacial pace of Rubicon, doesn’t mean they are a bunch of slobbering idiots!

      • Nielsen

        Unfortunately, “smart” Rubicon fans aren’t smart enough to understand what ratings numbers mean. Seriously, the show barely had a million viewers by the end.

      • Oh Well…

        It’s funny how a collective one million people hold such little sway in today’s world.

    • Swapnil

      Interval swim this morning. 2x500m/5min. rec.- 10:46, 10:52. Strength & cnonitidniog after school today. Zercher Squat- 95/2sets/5reps. 100/2sets/5reps, 130/2sets/3reps, 140/2reps, 150/1rep. Circuit- 210lbs. for Squats, 20 inch Box, Kip Pull-Ups- 3:15. Zerchers were awkward at first because I wasn’t using padding on the bar. After I put the neck pad it felt lots on the arms. Gonna use more weight next time.

  • Hollywoodending

    I am SO sad about this… I’ve been a loyal viewer, watching both Breaking Bad and Mad Men from the beginning, and I can’t help but fell like now that they’ve had a HUGE success with The Walking Dead, they’re giving up on their less-successful programing, no matter what the quality and the cult-following. Bad move, AMC, bad move…

    • bMd

      @Jim – by “general” audiences, do you mean the people that watchshows like “Housewives of New Jersey” and other such tripe that continue to turn people’s brains into mush. At this point its like refrying re-re-re-refried beans. It sucks that Rubicon got cancelled, along with a bunch of other good shows like Defying Gravity, Flash forward (started well, but deteriorated toward the end) Firefly and so on.. *sigh* I hope another network picks it up. Its a shame that so few people could appreciate the plot and cast, but oh well. Let’s just cross our fingers and hope it gets picked up by another group.

    • Ralph Phillips

      I put Rubicon in my top five. It’s a shame
      I stumbled on Rubicon and became a fan. I did not see any promotions for the show. I told friends and family and they became fans of the show. It was one of my favorite shows. I really wonder about the ratings. I am 67 years old and have never been surveyed on the shows I watch. I probably won’t be watching AMC anymore

  • Erich

    This is disappointing, but not much of a surprise. The shows that I like never seem to make it past one or two seasons.

  • dee

    So sad. It was a great show with amazing talent. Maybe it was too heady for some but I was intrigued. AMC should do a movie or at least some kind of wrap up…fans need closure. So much for the future of intellegent TV

    • JAM

      Agreed! Some sort of closure would be nice. The headiness of this show was refreshing actually. It wasn’t a dumb reality show, or a gossip show or a TMZ type thing, it was a good story with intrigue and unfortunately, not what most americans are mentally capable of latching onto lately. Such a sad loss for viewers looking for a little more from a show.

      • Pam

        HERE! HERE! Is it so much to ask for something that isn’t mind numbing with laugh tracks.

    • Martin

      please tell me WHEN it was “intellegent”?

      • martins mom

        Martin! I told you to leave this discussion to the grown ups who actually have patience. Now go to your room and watch your Jersey Shore. These nice people don’t need you butting in!

      • Martin’s Grandmother

        Martin is allowed to express his opinion, and shouldn’t have to put up with name-calling from people who have no legitimate counter-argument.

      • martins mom

        Martin, stop wearing your grandmother’s clothes and trolling message boards to annoy people trying to discuss their favorite television shows. I sent mammaw back to the retirement home. Dressing like her won’t bring her back. I’ve told you before that merely complaining about something is not a counter argument. Especially when there is no argument to be had. These good people are just talking about a television show that they cared about that has been sent to television heaven. What you’re doing is the message board equivalent of a fred phelps follower. Trying to draw attention to your negative thinking while people are mourning a loss. I can’t believe i raised you this way. It must have been all the mercury i fed you as a child.

      • Martin’s father

        I knew I should have used the belt on Martin. Spare the Rod, and look waht happens.

      • Templar

        Are you related to Norman bates?

      • Martin’s “Uncle”

        Hey Martin, come down to the basement, I’m filming a movie. Leave your shirt upstairs.

  • I liked it

    I wish AMC would keep shows on Hulu.

    • MWeyer

      I know, really behind on Rubicon eps because I kept having other things to watch on my DVR.

      • Dhara

        Funny you posted the soft gruond link today. I fell hard on the trail yesterday afternoon while doing 1 min short ints. Luckily it happened so fast I’m only scraped up and didn’t have any training-impeding injuries. In spite of occasional falls, I’ll still pick trails over the road everytime. Not necessarily because it’s softer. It’s just a lot more pleasant to run in the forest.

  • Dave

    I didn’t even know about this show until it was halfway through the season. I feel like AMC didn’t promote it quite as much as they do their other series.

    • Chris Shifty

      They had the pilot air after the season finale of Breaking Bad, 1.5 months before it premiered. The pilot was on iTunes and they promoted it during Mad Men which came on after it. AMC promoted it.

  • dcmom

    So disappointed! Everything about Rubicon was terrific.

    • Templar

      You must love beige.

  • JMaG

    See-ya…Can’t wait for Breaking Bad..

  • Birdman73

    Another example of an intelligent, well-written show cancelled before it gave viewers a chance to buy into the concept. Yes, it was slow … real slow … but it was one of the rare shows that forced me to engage my brain and think about what was happening episode by episode … most of the other stuff of TV is such mind-rotting crap, it’s a shame intelligent shows are cancelled in lieu of reality garbage.

    • Elizabeth

      But at least they got one season completed… far from the industry norms by FOX, NBC standards. They spend truckloads of money promoting the begeebers out a show and ax it 2, 4 episodes into the season.

    • Sara

      It was one of the few shows that I had to sit and watch without doing something else as well. I am not going to deny that it was slow but somehow if I didn’t watch every frame, I missed some nuance from the actors.

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