Tuca & Bertie Cancelled at Adult Swim

Some birds just can’t catch a break. On November 2nd, Lisa Hanawalt announced on Twitter that her beloved adult animated comedy, Tuca & Bertie, had been canceled on Adult Swim. This marks the second cancellation that the show has faced.

Tuca & Bertie follows the misadventures of the two titular best friends as they make their way in and out of the unexpected mishaps that is adult life. The show stars Tiffany Haddish as Tuca, Ali Wong as Bertie, and Steven Yeun as Bertie’s boyfriend, Speckle. The show premiered on Netflix on May 3rd, 2019. The show was met with critical acclaim from audiences and critics alike, earning a solid 98% on Rotten Tomatoes for the first season. But sadly, it wasn’t meant to be. Tuca & Bertie was canceled on Netflix unceremoniously less than three months after its premiere, with Hanawalt and her friends off to find a new home for the birds.

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On May 2020, it was announced that Adult Swim would handle the revival of Tuca & Bertie. Season 2 would premiere on the network (and later HBO Max) in June 2021. The show would be renewed for a third season in August of that year, which also premiered on Adult Swim and HBO Max. Both seasons boast an impressive 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Fans and Crew Cry For Bird Justice

Adult Swim

The announcement of Tuca & Bertie’s cancelation has brought up notable responses from Hanawalt’s colleagues. Raphael Bob-Waksberg, who served as executive producer on the show, tweeted that he was proud to have a hand in the show’s creation. Bob-Waksberg is most well known as creator of BoJack Horseman, for which Hanawalt served as production designer.

Meanwhile, Hanawalt’s boyfriend, Adam Conover, made notable points in the show’s cancelation. Conover also played several cameo roles in the show. He says that the reason behind the cancellation was the Warner/Discovery merger from earlier this year, which resulted in numerous shows being either canceled or scrubbed from the HBO Max library. Turns out Tuca & Bertie wasn’t even safe from the chopping block.

Conover continues the commentary with links to other news articles noting the dangers of such mergers and how it is affecting the animation industry. Since the merger, 38 animated shows have been canceled, with current shows like Craig of the Creek having their upcoming seasons chopped. Conover continued to voice his outrage on Twitter.

At its best, the American media industry has been a place where weird, beautiful, important stories like Tuca & Bertie could thrive. But waves of mergers have devastated it. We’re all paying more money for less choices than ever. I’m furious about it, and you should be too.

This has been a very rough year for animation. Between the layoffs at Netflix and Warner Bros., many names in the industry as left wondering what their future is going to be like. Despite how bleak it seems, Hanawalt is still aiming to keep some color. She ends her announcement with the hope that someday she and her team will be able to finish the story, and that there is a “beautiful and weird ending” for Tuca & Bertie planned out. Hopefully, sometime soon, that ending will be shared with the fans that felt connected to those equally weird and wonderful birds.