Sad news for those that like their period drama mixed with some horror on the side: It looks like Netflix's French series La Revolution won't be returning for a second season.
Set during the latter years of the 18th century, the series reimagines the history of the French Revolution. But instead of an opulent royal court driving a starving populace to rise up, the story centers on the spread of a disease known as Blue Blood, an affliction that not only turns their blood a different color but drives the aristocracy to murder commoners.
Zombie adjacent horror is not something we traditionally see in period dramas like this, but the series is dark and entertaining enough to feel like a completely new thing, a story in which blood and gore are beautifully rendered amid gorgeous, tension-filled landscapes. Unfortunately, viewers won't get to see how Joseph-Ignace Guillotin puts his famous murder machine to use against the undead - La Revolution won't be returning for a second season.
The news comes from site Allocine from France and an interview with Damien Couvreur, the man who has helped pioneer Netflix's expansion into French original content over the past five years. (You can see the fruits of his work in French heist drama Lupin, which is now projected to hit more streams in its first four weeks on the service than shows like The Queen's Gambit.)
Though Courvreur's interview was ostensibly about the international success of Lupin, he also weighed in on the other recent French-language Netflix series and its performance.
“The Revolution has indeed attracted many members beyond France. For us, this is proof that France, its history and its heritage, can interest an international audience. However, we are not going to renew the series for a second season, because although it has aroused curiosity, the public did not find what they wanted.”
From Courvreur's comments, it sounds as though, while viewers may have sampled the series initially, they didn't necessarily complete it, which is of course a bad sign for any impending second season. This is a real shame because it would have been really interesting to see where a La Revolution Season 2 went.
True, La Revolution is not a series for everyone - it's dark and very bloody, and it certainly doesn't do anything like justice to the complex, nuanced reasoning that informed the Revolution and all that came afterward. It's a show about pseudo-zombie rich people who may or may not eat the lower classes, this is not the place to be looking for in-depth historical truths. (Though I suspect this is a series that might have given a whole new definition to "Reign of Terror", just saying.)
All that said, the series' first season does end in a place that feels like something like closure, so if this is a genre or concept that interests you it's well worth giving a look. Just...maybe adjust your expectations accordingly.
Did anyone else watch La Revolution? Let's discuss in the comments.