AMC is not ready to leave the ’80’s behind just yet. In a surprise move, the network has renewed freshman drama Halt and Catch Fire for a second season, set to air in the summer of 2015.
“This is a show about invention, experimentation and the inherent risks in trying to break new ground — themes that really resonate with us as a network and attracted a passionate audience,” AMC President Charlie Collier said in a statement. “We have a history of demonstrating patience through the early seasons of new shows, betting on talent and building [an] audience over time. We see that opportunity here and look forward to a second season of Halt and Catch Fire from creators Chris Cantwell and Chris Rogers, and showrunner Jonathan Lisco.”
Cantwell, Rogers and Lisco added, “We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to continue telling this story. Our series about creation, innovation and taking bold risks wouldn’t be possible if it weren’t for our partners at AMC, a network known for these very things. Harnessing the momentum of our first season, this next chapter will take the rich characters our audience has come to love in new and surprising directions.”
Halt and Catch Fire is a period drama about the computer industry and the rise of the PC in the 1980s. The series stars Lee Pace, Scoot McNairy, Kerry Bishe, Mackenzie Davis and Toby Huss.
This renewal comes as a surprise to many, considering how low the ratings were during its inaugural run. The pilot was available to watch ahead of its official premiere date, and its first TV airing drew in 1.2 million viewers. When adding in DVR use, the show averaged 1.3 million viewers across season 1. AMC notes that it came in at number three in the 18-49 demographic, behind Mad Men and The Good Wife.
Compared to another AMC drama, fewer viewers tuned in for the Halt and Catch Fire finale than last October’s finale for Low Winter Sun, which was cancelled (574,000 versus 630,000).
Despite the ratings, the show itself improved creatively in its final few episodes, so let’s hope that momentum can continue into season 2.
(Image courtesy of AMC)