I can think of many reasons why Longmire shouldn’t have been canceled. Because I watched the last of season 6 last night, and I was so sad to see the characters leave us.

There are other reasons I think they should have held onto the Longmire series and extended the story for us.

In Why Longmire Shouldn't Have Been Canceled, Robert Taylor was the perfect Walt Longmire

For one thing, who better than Walt Longmire to show young boys why doing the right thing is the right thing to do? He was a wonderful role model.

Walter Longmire is honorable and old-fashioned when it comes to romance. He loved his wife Martha dearly and still mourned her. This was an old-fashioned romance that was inspirational.

Some said it was attracting “the wrong demographic.” Oh yes, that demographic that the advertisers so covet. The beloved “younger” demographic. They strongly desire the 18-35 age group.

Advertisers must think that this age group has money to spend on whatever they sell. But I don’t agree. I certainly didn’t have money to spend when I was between 18 and 35.

And even extending that range of demographics to between 18-49 doesn’t cut it with me either. That’s the wider age group they target with ads.

But I know people younger and older than this demographic who loved this show. So I think that’s nonsense.

Walt and Henry of the Longmire series

Possible Storylines To Be Explored:

Plus there were so many storylines that Longmire could have explored.

  • Walt & Vic’s budding relationship
  • Henry’s running of the casino
  • Kady running for sheriff
  • Zach & Kady’s possible romance
  • Ferg & Meg’s relationship could have blossomed
  • More about Ruby

And on and on.

The Man Who Personified Walt Longmire:

There aren’t many contemporary westerns that have captured the hearts of so many. But Robert Taylor of Australia was the perfect actor to play Walt Longmire.

His expressions spoke a thousand words. Walt’s taciturn personality was notable, as he was a man of few words.

His respect for the Native American population is such a positive spin on how they were historically treated. I personally would have loved to learn more.

In Why Longmire Shouldn't Have Been Canceled, Walt carries his rifle in this role.

Walt’s love did not come easy, because he so adored his late wife, Martha. She would always sit in an honored place in his heart.

But Vic could have been there for him too. Even if Martha overshadowed her a bit, there is the fact that Vic is alive and Martha was not.

The Relationship Between Kady & Zach:

The special relationship between Walt and his only child, Kady, was a joy to watch.

The romance between Kady and Zach could have been further explored, as it was at the end that they got together.

She could have been sheriff, so where would that have left Zach? I don’t know, but I would like to have had the chance to find out.

Zachary, the new deputy on the show

As for Zach, I was thrilled when they brought him back into the storyline toward the end. And thrilled, even more, when he and Kady ventured into a relationship.

Ruby’s role was minimal, but obviously, Walt respected her a great deal. I would like to have seen Ruby’s role explored more thoroughly.

The Last Of The Connallys:

The Connally’s are all gone. First Branch, then his father Barlow, and finally Lucian. (My dad’s name was Lucien, by the way.)

Lucian’s enigmatic role was a joy to watch. He was cranky but lovable in his own way.

The actor who played him, Peter Weller, did such a wonderful job portraying him. He was just another old sheriff who is put out to pasture, but never truly leaves it behind.

Acknowledging & Learning More About Native Americans:

And then there’s Henry (Lou Diamond Phillips). So much could have been delved into with Henry’s new role as casino owner. There could also have been a new romance for Henry.

We could have learned more about the culture of Native Americans. Historically, they were not treated too fairly. But on Longmire, they could have explored the Native Americans’ beliefs and way of life even more thoroughly.

I thought the long-term friendship between Henry and Walt was very special.

Henry Standing Bear could have led the way in teaching us more about Native American beliefs.

In my book, Longmire had much, much more of a story to tell.

A&E decided to cancel the show in 2014 after Season 3. At the time, it was the highest-rated drama the network had ever carried, so why did they cancel it?

Craig Johnson, the novelist
Craig Johnson, the novelist who created Longmire

Why Was Longmire Canceled?

Craig Johnson, the man who wrote the Longmire books, had much to say on how the show ended. He believed A&E canceled the show because it wanted to own and produce all the shows it airs. So there’s that.

According to Johnson, network executives were trying to strong-arm Warner Brothers into selling them “Longmire.” He believes that when that didn’t work, they canceled the show.

The reasons that A&E executives gave for canceling the show were that ratings had dropped from 4.2 to 3.9 million. And then there was that brouhaha about demographics.

More Exploration Into Demographics & Advertisers:

Demographics are the parameters that are used to point to the targeted audience. Some commonly used demographics include gender, age, location, languages known, annual income, parental status, etc.

Johnson said that with adjusted DVR recordings, they were maintaining steady viewership at about 6 million. And he said the show excelled in the 25-50 demographic.

Netflix picked up the show when A&E canceled it. Their executives know why they decided to cancel the show, but they aren’t telling anyone.

The Man Who Started It All, The Novelist Himself:

But with Craig Johnson at the helm of the storylines, the plots on Longmire could have gotten thicker and thicker.

We could have enjoyed watching the Longmire series for years to come if they hadn’t chosen to cancel it.

I was sad at the end. Because I knew that Walt had so much more to say and to teach us about life. About his old-fashioned views on love and law enforcement.

In Why Longmire Shouldn't Have Been Canceled, we could have learned more about Walt and Vic's new relationship

Walt & Vic:

His relationship with Vic had just begun. There was so much more that could have come of that.

Vic might have had another child to help her with her grief over losing the first one.

I so wish a network would take another look at this beloved series and breathe life back into it. The story is there, just waiting to be explored and delved into.

Do you think the Longmire series should have been extended? Please tell us why you loved or didn’t love it in the comments.

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24 Comments

  1. I just added Longmire to my “watch” list. It sounds like something I’d like. Having been in the TV business for 30+ years, yes, the coveted demographic is 18-49, but the baby boomers demo is also key, because as you say, they have money to spend. The drop-off in ratings didn’t seem significant enough to be a reason to cancel the series, so the likely reason was contract disputes, with WB as you mentioned, or maybe the actors may have wanted big increases which the network couldn’t afford. Production itself could have become too expensive. Sometimes the actors want to move on to other roles. Pure speculation on my part. But, when we, the audience, love a series, we don’t care what the reasons are – we just want more!

  2. We have watched all the episodes at least four times. I actually grieve the loss of this show. All the character development was great. I was happy to hear that another person felt the same way I did!

  3. Hi Brenda –
    Both my husband and I were so sad when we watched the final episode of Longmire. We felt we were losing a good friend. It kept us so entertained. Nothing since has been as good as this series. My husband had read the books, so he knew the storyline going in. I didn’t, and actually didn’t think it would be a show I would like. I was wrong. It was soooooo good!!! I just wish more shows could be made to this caliper.

  4. You’ve written about this show several times and I’m very intrigued. I need to start “streaming” so I can start enjoying the shows you’ve discussed in the past.

  5. My husband and I are rewatching Longmire on Peacock. We also watch each evening on Circle network. Last night they aired the last episode. I’m always so sad to see it end. If it had to end, I’m happy with the way they tied up the ends of the storylines. I’m in total agreement with you Brenda, on how they could continue.

  6. I absolutely LOVED it! Have watched the entire seasons, all of them, 3 times now! I so want more! I tried reading the first book, but the characters didn’t seem the same at all. The actors are what made the show so good!

  7. We watched every season of Longmire and enjoyed it, too. I was sad it ended.

    Another sappier Cowboy-ish Netflix series is Heartland. There are 14 seasons. We have that in our watch list for whenever I just need something that is mostly light and breezy. I don’t like to watch scary shows right before I go to bed!

    1. I don’t know what I’m going to watch next. I watched a movie this afternoon. My hands are still buzzing from putting those chairs together, so I watch TV so I can rest them.

  8. I am watching the final season. Such depth to this show. I’m re-listening to all the audio tapes. You are right about everything. Great series.

  9. Brenda, I have never heard of this show, you have me intrigued . I think I might read the books instead because more often than not the books are better.
    I hope that you are feeling better! And enjoying the cooler weather!

  10. I think the ending would have been stronger if Walt had begun his treasure hunt before someone else found it. It was the greatest thing happening at that time in the area. The story line was what else is happening in this area that we can tell.

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