Currently on television it is not uncommon for a series to be on the air for over five seasons, perhaps even ten! It is this fact that makes the possible ending of Cinemark’s series The Knick after just two seasons so shocking.
From this point on there are going to be a lot of spoilers, you have been warned!
The final episode of The Knick (season two) seemed to wrap everything up quite neatly: John Thackery is presumed dead, Dr. Algernon Edwards is continuing Thackery’s work on addiction, Lucy Elkins is moving away with Henry Robertson, Cornelia Robertson has fled to find a new life in Australia, Dr. Everett Gallinger is off to Germany to spread the word of eugenics and Tom Cleary and Sister Harriet (Rose) are engaged. Everything seems neatly tied up in the story department and to make matters worse, the creators of the show have confessed that they only planned to create a two year story arc. The prognosis for another season looks grim!
However, there is a small hope for recovery. Recent rumblings are that Cinemark has requested scripts for two more seasons of the show. It appears that they are going to evaluate the scripts and see if the show would “benefit from subsequent episodes.” But even if there are additional seasons it is unclear whether the plot will continue immediately after the events of the season two finale, take place in the near future or perhaps even be a prequel. For all we know the next two seasons could feature an entirely different cast, though I most certainly hope that this will not be the case. Even if the show is continued, it is unclear whether Steven Soderbergh will continue to direct or whether the show’s star and executive producer Clive Owen will return. That’s an awful lot of “if’s” and “maybe’s!”
So basically everything is still up in the air! I am happy to see that Cinemark is seriously contemplating the show’s continuance and that they are going through a very careful thought process. Of course I want more of the characters, setting and drama that I loved in the first two seasons of The Knick. That said, I don’t want to see the show go downhill and tarnish the masterpiece they have created. There are many shows I wish had ended sooner, while they were ahead, rather than sullying everything that came before.
Luckily the last episode of season two is a fine way to end the show and I think it will leave most fans quite content with where it left their favorite characters’ stories. However, I can imagine a few good ways that Cinemark could continue the series with the same cast of characters. What follows is pure speculation on how Cinemark could continue the story. I’ve taken some hints from the last few episodes of season two which gave us some direction of where the stories could go.
My thoughts on where a season three of The Knick would take us: as mentioned above, everyone’s character arcs were wrapped up quite nicely at the end of season two, but some definitely allowed room for continuation. For example, many people rightly thought that Thackery perished under his own scalpel at the end of season two, after all, Edwards says to Henry Robertson that he wants to continue Thackery’s work and that he owed that much to him. This most certainly sounds as though he perished, yet we never actually see Thackery’s corpse and I found it interesting that Birdy injects Thackery with a syringe of adrenaline, the miracle drug they had been experimenting with. Was this a last ditch effort to save his dear friend that failed? If so, I don’t know why they even had him inject him in the first place. It would have been just as simple to have Edwards, Birdy, Everett and Levi Zinberg rush to his side, try to stop the bleeding, fail and watch their friend die before their eyes.
There are also smaller things that make me believe that the show will continue with the same cast of characters. The oh so slimy Herman Barrow mentions sores that he has on his hands which he means to have one of the doctors look at them. This is never fully explained and seems like something that was meant to be continued in ensuing episodes. Also, while he is fearing that he may need to hire a lawyer to defend himself against arson charges he signs over everything to his lover, Junia. The charges are almost immediately dropped and nothing happens regarding this detail. If I knew there was going to be a season three I would say that Junia likely takes the money and runs, leaving poor (literally) Herman lonely and in financial ruin yet again. Another point, the show’s writers introduce the brilliant reporter Genevieve who seems to be a very interesting and complex character yet she gets very little screen time in season two. I can easily imagine that the writers had plans to continue her and Birdie’s story over subsequent episodes.
Perhaps the writers of the show included these details simply to allow us, the audience, to imagine what happens with these characters after the credits roll on the final episode. Or they considered the possibility of subsequent seasons and they were making sure they had a sure direction to take the show if need be. In the final analysis, I don’t really mind whether Cinemark continues the show or not. Of course I would be ecstatic to have more from the world of The Knick but not at the expense of the show’s quality. If it truly was their plan to end the show at season two then perhaps it would be best if they leave it where it stands. If they do decide to bring the show back I hope that the same writers, Steven Soderbergh and Clive Owen are at the helm of the ship and we can join them once again in the circus with all its divine madness.