The Duplass brothers are dropping the bomb on their core fans.
Though the fifth episode of HBO’s critically-acclaimed series Togetherness will air tonight like nothing has changed at all, the fate of the show is sealed. In a decision announced by co-creators Jay Duplass and Mark Duplass this morning, Togetherness will officially end in the season two finale in three weeks, Deadline reports.
Togetherness followed the lives of a married couple, Brett (Mark Duplass) and Michelle (Melanie Lynskey) raising their two young children while their friend Alex (Steve Zissis) has moved in due to his failing acting career, as well as Michelle’s sister Tina (Amanda Peet). Together, the four–well, six–shared a house in Los Angeles while the show mostly analyzed the challenges of modern marriage and friendship and how it can all tangle messily given time and space.
The show was not a victim of cancellation, at least, not by its host. HBO in fact supported Togetherness well, recognizing that ratings weren’t in fact everything. Nonetheless, the numbers didn’t serve the show well. It eventually garnered about 2.6 million viewers by its second season premiere, according to Deadline, which is respectable enough, but in comparison to some of HBO’s Goliaths like Game of Thrones and Veep, Togetherness was a David without a happy ending. Even stacked against its fellow shows in the Sunday night lineup, like Girls (which averages 500,000 viewers and declining despite its significant splash into the mainstream conscious), Togetherness’s numerical achievements were small.
Critically, Togetherness was revered by some. TIME Magazine said of its first season, “like a lot of marriage-and-relationship stories, you’ve heard this one before. But this coming-of-middle-age dramedy retells it well.”
On the other hand, not everyone viewed Togetherness at the same level. In response to the show’s similarity in focus to other HBO shows like Looking and Girls, Variety claimed that while Togetherness “yields some insights, moments, and even laughs…it generally falls into a limited range of people who talk a lot about their feelings and, in the case of the central couple, don’t let more general comforts get in the way of agonizing about their problems.”
The comedy’s show-runners still have an active working relationship with HBO. Jay and Mark Duplass together executive produce the popular animated series Animals, which is also in the midst of its second season.
In response to the abrupt cancellation, HBO released a statement, saying that “although we have decided not to proceed with another season of Togetherness, we look forward to continuing our strong creative collaboration with the talented Jay and Mark Duplass.”
The last episode of Togetherness, or episode eight of season two, will air April 10th on HBO.