The Truth Behind Why The Riverdale Spinoff Katy Keene Was Cancelled

The CW’s Riverdale spinoff and musical fiction show Katy Keene has been cancelled after just one season.

Starring Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars), Keene’s character is based off of an Archie Comics character of the same name, and follows the journey of four twenty-somethings, all artists, who are struggling to make it in the Big Apple.

Katy is an aspiring fashion designer and is joined by new roommate Josie McCoy, reappearing as the same character she played in teen smash hit show, Riverdale.

The show is supposed to have taken place five years prior to the first four seasons of Riverdale.

Sadly, something here clearly was not working for fans, and season one will be all we see from the cast for now.

There are rumours that the show may possibly continue via a streaming service, but this is yet to be determined.

Not only was the show interrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, but the show’s cancellation has reportedly been due to its low digital performance on HBO Max’s streaming platform and on The CW network.

This news was shocking due to monumental success of the show’s cousin, Riverdale’s digital triumph on Netflix.

Surprisingly, Katy Keene was CW’s only cancellation this season.

Why was Katy Keene cancelled after just one season?


Credit: The CW

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The show’s star Lucy Hale recorded an emotional Instagram video to confirm the show’s cancellation, naming it ‘‘the role of a lifetime.’’ Season one viewing of the show averaged 480,000 viewers with a 0.12 average rating amongst 18-49 years olds.

Here’s what the show did right. Though Lucy Hale is the show’s protagonist, an attempt to diversify the cast in light of the Black Lives Matter movement is evident.

Black character Josie McCoy (Ashleigh Murray) crosses over from murder capital, Riverdale with dreams of becoming a singer in New York.

She crosses paths with Alex Cabot (Lucien Laviscount) the CEO of his father’s company who promises her a record deal with his families record label.

He is another black character, and successful at that. Alexandra Cabot is also a beautiful and successful, black character.

She is a powerful New York socialite who is attempting to work her way up her father’s company over her brother.

Then, there’s Ginger, aka Jorge, an aspiring Broadway star who is struggling to make it big.

And Pepper Smith, a character who is Jack of all trades, with the most promise, yet who somehow falls on her face the hardest.

The original Katy Keene according to Archie lore, was a stylish college student who became the pin-up girl of the Archie comics brand.

The show has plenty of style, colour, glitz and glam.

Katy Keene was no Gossip Girl


Credit: The CW

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There are love stories that twinkle here and there, like Katy and her boyfriend KO, and Josie is followed around obsessively by Alex Cabot.

Equally, there’s sadness too through Katy’s troubled family past and Peppers money troubles.

The fashion, however, is fabulous throughout, as is the hair and make-up.

The storyline picks up and is strengthened by Keene’s workplace ‘‘Lacys’’ and the drama that ensues with her friends’ lives.

Here’s the thing. The show’s general storyline is nothing new; an optimistic young woman living in New York City with her friends and dreams of becoming somebody someday.

My point is, the show is no Gossip Girl, nor will it reach the summit that is Riverdale simply because the bite we prepare to take, is all gone by the first episode in my opinion.

Katy is hungry for success in the heart of New York, she is working at Lacy’s (which is her dream since childhood) and she is attentive, a great member of staff.

But her obsession with making everybody’s outfits, lands her in trouble constantly.

The show drags this idea and it becomes like a boring version of The Marvelous Mrs Maisel with the glitz and glam and numerous outfits, coupled with a dreamy narration, but lacks in uumph for a show based in buzzing New York City.

It somehow manages to minimize Manhattan. The show is also way to clean-cut, to be based in New York.

The show was just too boring

Katy-Keene-the cw

Credit: The CW

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It requires a blend of both the gritty and glitzy which it does not possess.

The show lacks a lot of the grandeur needed to become a pop-culture classic, but the random nature of the show’s narrative makes it boring.

The storyline lacks depth and lacks reality in many instances.

It’s also possible that the fact that it’s based on the character of the same name, outdates this character who is living in the future.

It is supposed to be five years after Riverdale has ended, but this is not easy to pick up.

The musical element also does not work because Josie and Gorge usually suffocate it with boring originals or bad cover versions.

These are not songs we want to purchase on iTunes or recreate Tiktoks to instantly.

No, they are great songs done badly like Toni Braxton’s, ‘Unbreak My Heart’, Lady Gaga’s ‘Million Reasons’ and Nikki Minaj’s ‘Moment for Life.’

The songs project as counterfeit performances rather than musical style storytelling. It’s all very awkward.

The CW has much better shows to focus on


Ruby Rose as Kate Kane in Batwoman Season 1 – Credit: The CW

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Compared to shows like Batwoman and Nancy Drew, the show failed in its mission to gain high ratings, especially considering its promise especially due to the Riverdale crossover episode.

Before the pilot aired, apparently 13 episodes were ordered prematurely due to its potential.

The show is reportedly the only show on The CW which was not renewed for a new season in January.

There is reported potential for the show to gain an extension for the network to change their minds.

What do you make of this article?

Were you sad to see that The CW cancelled Katy Keene after just one season?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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There are 15 comments

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  1. Jane parks

    So sorry to see Katy Keene not renewed. Was so looking forward to getting some answers to last years questions. And seeing the characters advance in their career endeavours. Also the great fashions every week. Was a fan of the comic book in the 50s. Is there a chance that the show could be retooled for another go around?

  2. LeAnn

    I’m in my mid to late. 50’s way past your target age and I just love the show, couldn’t get enough of it. You really need to revamp it and do something with this show, because I would keep watching it if it was rebooted.

  3. Katyi

    This is the teen vogue esq woke show we NEED. ONE that absolutely should have way more seasons. It might be TITLED “KATY KEEN” but it’s about the whole fam you choose.

  4. Carolyn Wu


  5. Anonymous

    The show was one of my favorites, the style was absolutely amazing, the characters grew on you and i definitely would like to see it come back and venture in to so many possibilities of living in New York.

  6. Jill R.

    I LOVE KATY KEENE! Bring it back!! I agree with others that there was a lot more potential here. I think covid-19 had a lot to play in this lack of ratings otherwise it would’ve grabbed enough attention to really show everyone what could be done in season 2 & continue it there on for many others as well. Really sad this decision was made & I think it was a mistake.

  7. Anonymous

    Damn feel really bad second time I saw Lucy Hale cast another show that is canceled . Y???? I really like both of them . The one about the story of a girl got cancer . N now the show Katy Keene . I guess I’m one of the few people like the shows that Lucy Hale in it . Not to mention PLL . I guess all the cast is very devastated. I hope the best for them . The show biz is tough ass hell . But a viewer like Asian American myself enjoy it n appreciated the story .

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