Our ongoing look back at sci fi / fantasy TV shows that were cancelled way too soon or pilots that never made it to series.
This animated series represented the next logical step from the Teen Titans show that preceded it as it focused on slightly older superhero sidekicks, though with a mostly different lineup from the familiar TT group. The main characters were Robin/Nightwing, Aqualad, Kid Flash, Superboy, Miss Martian, and Artemis and they comprised a younger version of the Justice League that they referred to as “the Team”. The show bowed in 2010 and was notable for its more mature themes and well-developed characters and it attracted a loyal fanbase of younger and older viewers throughout its two seasons. But this one, along with Green Lantern: The Animated Series, was not included on Cartoon Network’s 2013-14 season schedule, much to the ire of the fans because it left the Apokolips storyline unresolved. There were talks of a crowd-funding campaign, but Warner Bros. stated that they would not consider that as an option to produce a third season (to which the obvious question is “Why not?”). An early rumor on why the show was cancelled claimed that because Young Justice had a larger female viewership than the typical superhero show, its merchandising was not as profitable because girls do not buy as many toys. Whether there was any truth to that is uncertain, but series co-creator Greg Weisman later indicated that Mattel cancelled the toy line because it was not that profitable, and the revenue from that was needed to help cover the production costs of the show. Since its cancellation, Young Justice has developed a cult following and its two-season run was recently picked up by Netflix, spurring hope among fans that the streaming service will consider producing a third season. The producers and cast have all shown an interest in returning to the series and there have been multiple petitions by fans to convince WB to carry on the story (the most current is at this link) plus a Facebook page championing the cause. Brandon Vietti has said that any third season decisions are “above my pay grade”, but Weisman has indicated that the best way to get another season is to watch the show on Netflix (“over and over”) and also buy the Blu-rays. So while the show was truncated before wrapping up its story arcs, there still is some hope that it could come back for at least one more season.
Update: Warner Bros. Animation has announced that they will be producing a third season of Young Justice. More at this link.
Aired: Cartoon Network, 2010-13 2 Seasons Totaling 46 Episodes
Created By: Greg Weisman, Brandon Vietti
Starring: Stephanie Lemelin, Jesse McCartney, Danica McKellar, Nolan North
Buy Young Justice on Blu-ray and DVD from Amazon.com: