Was Dark Matter Season 4 Picked Up by Netflix or Amazon Yet?

The space opera Dark Matter first aired on the Space Channel in Canada and on SyFy in the United States in June of 2015. The science fiction series showcased the awakening of six people from stasis on board a starship, none of whom had any memory of who they were or why they were on the ship. After three seasons, though the show had developed an avid, even cult like following, SyFy canceled the series on September 1, 2017, after three seasons and 39 episodes. The news was announced by the show’s co-creator Joseph Mallozzi on his personal blog and later confirmed by the network.

Was Dark Matter Season 4 Picked Up by Netflix or Amazon Yet?

Fans of the show immediately took to the internet to express their outrage over this decision. They sent angry emails to the network, tweeted their support to cast members, and launched online petitions to save the show. They also wrote to Netflix and Amazon, urging them to pick up the show for another season that would tie up loose ends and give the fans closure. Unfortunately, at this date it appears conclusive: there will be no resurrection for Dark Matter.

What Is Dark Matter About?

Dark Matter is a story about six seemingly unconnected people who one day woke up from stasis aboard the Raza starship. With no memories of their lives or their identities, they assume the names One, Two, Three, Four, Five, and Six in the order which they woke up. Over the course of three seasons, they would learn about their past lives and the events that brought them aboard the Raza.

Based on the eponymous comic book written by its creators Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie, Dark Matter was originally developed for the Canadian specialty TV channel Space by the Toronto-based Prodigy Pictures. SyFy joined the project in late 2014 and ordered a 13-episode first season.

Filmed entirely in Toronto and starring mostly unknown young actors, the series debuted on June 12, 2015. One week later, it was joined by “Killjoys”, another sci-fi series made for the Space network and picked up by SyFy for US broadcast. Neither show was a major ratings success, but both had respectable viewing figures and quickly developed a cult following.

For the next three seasons, Dark Matter and Killjoys would occupy SyFy’s Friday night prime time schedule during the summer months. During their third seasons, both shows averaged about 0.6 rating points in the coveted 18-49 demographic. However, after the season was over, only Dark Matter was canceled. Killjoys survived the network’s purge of shows, landing a final season deal along the way.

Why Was Dark Matter Canceled?

Many sources claimed that Dark Matter was canceled due to poor ratings, but there’s more to it than just that. After all, it was SyFy’s second highest-rated show after Killjoys and regularly outrated the network’s other two primetime shows, Wynonna Earp (0.5 18-49) and 12 Monkeys (0.35 18-49), both of which were renewed at the time.

These ratings might seem low compared to broadcast television, but they are pretty good for a niche cable network like SyFy. And let’s be honest – the glory days when new episodes of Battlestar Galactica averaged a 2.0 rating for SyFy are long gone. The media landscape is much different than it was in the mid-noughties and all TV networks have seen steep ratings declines over the years.

The show’s co-creator Joseph Mallozzi offered another explanation for the cancelation. Namely, Dark Matter isn’t a SyFy original in the truest sense of the word. Neither the network nor its parent company (NBC Universal) holds the distribution rights to the show, which means that they can’t make profit by selling it to international buyers, designing syndication deals, or selling the show’s seasons to streaming platforms. Instead, the distribution rights are entirely owned by the show’s production company, Prodigy Pictures.

Killjoys, meanwhile, is a co-production between Canada’s Bell Media and Universal Cable Productions (UCP). In fact, UCP holds worldwide distribution rights to the series, so every time it is sold to a streaming platform or a TV station abroad, its parent company NBC Universal–which also owns SyFy–will receive a hefty share of the profits. As such, even if the show underperformed on SyFy, the network would still have a way to turn a profit from international syndication.

Based on this information, it is clear that SyFy canceled Dark Matter primarily for financial reasons and not because of its ratings, which were better than the majority of SyFy’s lineup. Unfortunately, this has become a common phenomenon in the land of television ratings, as more streaming services are started by entertainment companies looking to build their portfolios with their own originals.

Why Would Netflix or Amazon Want to Save the Show?

Netflix has a long history of saving shows that were canceled by broadcast and cable networks. By the time “Dark Matter” was canceled in September 2017, they had successfully rescued Arrested Development, The Killing, Longmire, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, the latter of which was cancelled prior to ever airing on NBC. Likewise, Amazon Prime Video picked up their first saved show with SyFy’s The Expanse a year after Dark Matter was shut down.

It’s incorrect to say streaming platforms don’t care about ratings, but when it comes to the most important aspect of streaming, most services look beyond typical ratings. Instead, they want their shows to build a large online following and generate a strong word of mouth that would attract new subscribers. Historically, sci-fi shows haven’t performed all that well ratings-wise, but they’ve all managed to build cult followings, especially in the online community. It is thus no surprise that the fans and creators of Dark Matter looked to Netflix or Amazon to give their show a chance at survival.

Did Netflix or Amazon Pick Up Dark Matter Season 4?

Before Netflix or Amazon could pick up the show, SyFy still had the option to order additional episodes. That’s why the creators proposed a six-episode fourth season that would bring the story to a close. The network took some time to consider this proposal, but they ultimately rejected the idea.

The creators of Dark Matter then started talking to the representatives of Netflix and other popular streaming platforms. Even though some of them expressed interest in renewing the show for a fourth season, it was already too late. By failing to renew the show in a timely manner, SyFy effectively allowed its cast members’ contracts to expire. They were thus free to pursue other projects and many of them have already booked new shows.

To pick up the show for another season, not only would Netflix have to renegotiate contracts with every single cast members but they’d also probably have to recast a few roles due to schedule conflicts. The simple truth is that fans wouldn’t want to watch their favorite show with half of the original cast members replaced. And that is the main reason why Netflix and Amazon haven’t picked up the show.

At one point, it looked like the show might get picked up by MGM’s streaming platform Stargate Command. The renowned studio wanted to expand the Dark Matter universe so that it would crossover with the platform’s sole original show, Stargate Origins. Mallozzi was very excited about this, especially because he spent more than a decade as a writer on the Stargate television franchise, which was SyFy’s biggest hit until the 2003 reboot of Battlestar Galactica.

Unfortunately, all these plans fell through due to contractual issues. And just like that, it became clear that fans won’t be seeing the fourth season of Dark Matter any time soon.

Will There Be More “Dark Matter” in the Future?

Everyone involved in Dark Matter has since moved on to new projects. But the creators are still holding out hope that the show might return in the future, even as a two-hour reunion movie that would resolve the cliffhangers from the season 3 finale and wrap up all ongoing storylines. It could take years to work out a deal, negotiate contracts, and figure out the way to synchronize schedules.

Meanwhile, Mallozzi has been posting extensive outlines of his planned season four episodes to his Twitter account, as well as his personal blog. This gives fans an opportunity to learn what would have happened to their favorite characters had the show been picked up for another season.

However, at this date, it seems clear that there simply isn’t interest on the part of any of the players who would need to make a restart happen. So, for now at least, rest in peace Dark Matter.

30 thoughts on “Was Dark Matter Season 4 Picked Up by Netflix or Amazon Yet?”

t says:
Finnish the job, or maybe you cant. Choose wisely.
Tim Roberts says:
I can’t believe what they did to Dark Matter one of the best shows ive ever wacthed some one bring it back ive never felt like this before like loosing a close friend Netflix give us another 10 seasons i really miss the actors Sy Fy should be ashamed of your seves you don’t know what your doing bring it back
Joannamhe says:
I feel you!syfy should consider their viewers.its not easy not knowing.or at least write us a damn book so we can just read the ending
Desiree says:
Never in my 42 years on this planet have I gone back and watched an entire series over again. There is something really special about this series. ❤
Brandon Raatz says:
I discovered Dark Matter about a year ago and got my girlfriend hooked on it as well. We are so where so disappointed when we looked up when season 4 was coming out and found out it was canceled. SG1 and this show are by far my favorite shows ever I just cant believe it hasnt been picked up. Please save this series
Mike says:
After each episode had no need to watch another straight away, but with time I realized that I am thinking what will happen to my favourite crew next. It is insane to me, as I haven’t fell that connection in years. When I was in half of season 3 I started to dose every episode to myself, like one per week, to make it last for longer. Not always I was manage to do this. Please don’t let my friends from the Raza spacecraft fall into oblivion.
Troady says:
Just watched the 3 series of Dark Matter in a week, best scy fi series out there with The 100 and Defiance. Will gladly pay to see another 5 series of it.
David Blackwell says:
This was a really good show which as usual the networks screw up. Let it go to Netflix bc it’s better than most cable networks resign the original people if possible. Good show canceled bc lack of ratings and funding is a cope out.
Avram says:
It is amazing to me with so many passionate viewers that Dark Matter was cancelled. It could have been at least 6, if not 8 seasons. The entry of the Black Ships could have been at least 3. We need to continue the noise to bring it back.
korn pop says:
Can’t believe I just discovered this show. well written and very entertaining. Damn shame it isn’t 10 seasons….. the writers are very talented.
Mik Bar says:
Dark Matter was really well written with multiple plot lines developing simultaneously that could take any episode off in unexpected directions with characters you can care about. It never drags and the first 3 seasons set up enough compelling material for 3 more but suddenly there is nothing. Good quality has not prevailed here – what a disappointment.
Still hoping though….
Space man says:
Dark matter should have had 7 seasons. Season 4 the black ships came through the gateway & wreck havoc. Season 5 should have been the moment the crew elect to restore their memory to go full badass on the Aliens. So much possibilities, what a waste!
Jeff Howe says:
Quality show with a great cast. Still cannot believe the show was axed at such a critical point.
I am always checking on line for some good news on it restoration.
Stephen R Tucker says:
We need to start as many negative hashtags as possible against Sci-fy channel until someone takes notice. They can’t get out of their own way. I’m convinced the people that make the decisions aren’t even science fiction fans and probably didn’t watch one episode of Dark Matter….. #scifychannelsucks
Kathy Navarro-Sochel says:
Yep. Money talks. It’s too bad. Loved Dark Matter. Left on a Cliff Hanger. Firefly PTSD all over again.
Gerald says:
I’m 65, been a sci-fi fan all my life, I’ve binge watched Dark Matter 3 times. They had a great story line with so much possibility. then I check to see when they’ll do more with the series and get hit with a Firefly moment. To bad SciFi channel keeps shooting themselves in the feet repeatedly…
Josh McCulloch says:
I just started watching Dark matter when i came to the end and i got outraged cuz they still havent made a season 4, u cant have a show end like that, u gotta give fans an actual ending
Kathy Navarro-Sochel says:
Firefly all over again! Help.
George Nilsen says:
I love this show. I am 62
KB says:
Netflix keeps adding crappy new shows, but cancels the good ones?
michael says:
syfy needs to stop cancelling shows…..if they can make ncis last for 14 season i am sure 5 seasons of dark matter could happened….sigh i have flyfire/syfy ptsd
Sally Scott says:
I normally don’t watch Sci-Fi shows but took a chance on Dark Matter. I could’t believe how they left it hanging. I was so mad I almost called Netflix and cancelled my account. They do keep adding crappy new shows but here comes a show that held my interest.
I can’t believe the actors are doing so well that they would jump ship.
Chandler says:
Syfy canceled it not netflix, Netflix just had rights to stream it.
Jackie Zukow says:
I really love dark matter and then you go and up and end it when they’re in the middle of a war that is not right somebody needs to pick up the season so we can see what happens.
Jeff Kirk says:
The management that did not continue this show are idiots. If they want revenue or to attract viewers…. they should just continue this show.
You have no idea how wide an impact that show had, I have a 70+ yr old close friend who watches nothing and I do mean nothing, but westerns, old westerns, and sports … I go over to their house, for the really good Italian food, and to vote with his wife, so she can watch “The Big Bang”. Once, when that was not on, I put on an episode of Dark Matter … and when I came back the next week, they had already binged a whole season … and wanted more. Pretty sad that something that good, could be let slip away because of some junior administrator’s budget concerns.
Joanna Kindermann says:
I really miss Dark Matter and want the show to continue! Most shows suck these days but Dark Matter kept me on the seat of my chair! It was one of the best tv shows I have seen yet!
Frederick Morey says:
I recently discovered “Dark Matter”! I am disappointed to read here there will be no forth season. It is well written with a great storyline. It’s too bad that it’s slipped to the point contractual differences could not be ironed out. What about a movie? Just throwing that out!
Kyle Krage says:
If they don’t want to make a fourth season maybe they could make a movie of Dark Matter explaining what happened, like Serenity, the ending of Fire Fly.
Markey says:
Being a recent subscriber to Netflix I was already watching a few other movies when I came across Dark Matter. I put the others aside to totally become immersed in Dark Matter. There has been an excellent job in casting the right people for the right parts. Someone should pick this up and continue it for another few seasons.
It should be obvious by now that this would bring in substantial revenues.
Don’t wait until AT&T streaming picks this up and capitalizes on it’s potential.
IF ANY BODY WANT TO HAVE A GOOD TIME , WATCHING A GREAT TV SHOW , They should consider watching THE DARK MATTER SERIES and bring back the great same cast ! and
more new episodes!
Oddvin Preinstad says:
For gods sake, id be happy with a book to tie up the cliffhangers
Robert Jerger says:
Just started watching this series again on Netflix and I very rarely rewatch any series. I love this show.
Kettl says:
Too sad. If good promoted, they can make good money with Episode 4 or even a 5th!
Daniel Samson says:
SyFy cancelled Stargate Universe to. Without closure. For WWE WRESTLING. We all know wrestling is fake but its not sifi. Will never. watch a Sy Fy show until all seasons are on dvd and storylone is complete. And only if the show is worth watching. Even then I’ll borrow from library if there is any chance syfy might get a cent of profit.
Lupin says:
WWE came on because of money issues… I don’t understand why people don’t understand basic math and claim “X show was canceled because of y show”, WWE effectively finances SYFY by producing a highly lucrative advertising spot which equals MONEY FOR STARGATE UNIVERSE. If SyFy really wanted to maximize profits they would turn into a sports channel / reality tv instead.
Robert says:
Dark matter does not need just a 4th season it needs more than that they could do so much more with the show than just wrapping it up. It has so much potential.
SpiderMike says:
If everyone would stop watching The Rookie on ABC, maybe it would get canceled and “Two” would be availabile for a Dark Matter reboot.
Robert Hooper says:
I love Dark Matter, I keep watching it over and over, would love to see a 4th season for a conclusion.
Green Hair says:
I agree , Dark Matter does have sooo much potential …. Fans WILL wait for more or closure 🙂 look @ Farscape we waited for 5 years until they finally gave us closure 🙂
the raza says:
Excellent write-up thanks. I will never bother with anther syfy show again after canceling the only sci fi show I have enjoyed in a long time and then airing wrestling re-runs wtf is wrong with these money driven a holes. Really missing Dark Matter.
Vormina says:
It never ceases to amaze me just how little these companies actually care about their viewer base. SyFy has become notorius for killing shows in the middle of the storyline; Farscape, Firefly, Dark Matter, and those are just the ones off the top of my head. It’s not often when great storylines, acting, casts, and production value all come together to create these wonderful shows where you have an interest in every single character, only to have it end unfinished after a couple seasons, yet these mind-numbing, no-content, tasteless, talentless, boring reality shows go on for decades.
DandyDan says:
Well Said!
Desiree says:

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