There has been no official explanation as to why New Amsterdam was cancelled so abruptly, but declining ratings are most likely to blame.
While there are similarities between New Amsterdam and other medical dramas, the show does place a unique focus on the issues plaguing public health care.
Even so, the show was abruptly cancelled after just five seasons with no real explanation from the network or the show’s creators as to why this decision was made.
How does New Amsterdam compare to other popular medical dramas?
When NBC’s New Amsterdam started airing in 2018, it was immediately compared to other well-known medical dramas like Grey’s Anatomy, ER and The Resident.
However, whereas the other shows tend to focus on the doctors of the hospital and how they would do absolutely anything for their patients, New Amsterdam focuses on the Medical Director of the hospital as he tries to assist his staff in making their underfunded public hospital function optimally.
In turn, the show ends up focusing more on public health care issues, rather than on individual medical cases.
Why did New Amsterdam end so abruptly?
Now, in 2023, New Amsterdam has entered its fifth and final season, which ended with a special double finale episodes that aired on 17 January 2023.
Even though it is normal for shows to run their course and eventually be cancelled by their networks, the announcement that New Amsterdam would be cancelled after its fifth season has shocked many fans of the series.
This announcement was made on 14 March 2022 just a few months before the final season would start airing on 20 September 2022.
However, although Erin Underhill, the President at Universal Television put out a statement which praised the show, its creators, and its cast, Universal Television has not been forthright about why the show was cancelled so abruptly.
New Amsterdam’s viewership has dropped slightly over the last few years from the first season, which was watched by well over 5 million viewers per episode, to the fourth season which only reached about 3 million viewers per episode on average.
But these declining ratings have not been confirmed as the reason why the show was cancelled.
In fact even the creators of the show, including David Schulner and executive producer, Peter Horton, seem to be dumbfounded that the show was cancelled so suddenly after just five seasons.
They have also been open about the fact that they would have liked to have a few more seasons to finish their story. It is likely that the New Amsterdam fans agree with this sentiment.
About New Amsterdam’s double episode finale
The twelfth and thirteenth episodes of the fifth season of New Amsterdam first aired on 17 January 2023 and marked the conclusion of the entire show.
However, even though this two-hour, double-episode finale was promoted as being a special event for the end of the show, these episodes were not written or filmed with this conclusion in mind.
This means that the finale was not split over two episodes and episode twelve, titled “Right Place” should really just be seen as the penultimate episode to the actual final episode of the show, titled “How Can I Help?”.
Was the ending of New Amsterdam a full circle moment?
Even though the conclusion of New Amsterdam happened fairly abruptly, it is evident that the creators and writers behind the show did their best to make the series feel like it had come full circle by its final episode.
This includes the inclusion of a reference to Max’s catchphrase “How Can I Help?” in the title of the episode and also the fact that it is revealed in the end that the new Medical Director of New Amsterdam is really his now grown-up daughter, Luna.
Where did all of the characters end up at the end of New Amsterdam?
The last episode of New Amsterdam is expectedly packed full of action and features a flashback to Max’s last day at the hospital before he left to work for the World Health Organisation.
However, Max is not the only character who got a chance to shine in this episode and it has flashbacks to the moments that all of the beloved characters decided to go into medicine.
Although viewers did not get the satisfaction of seeing Dr Helen Sharpe return to the hospital or to her relationship with Max, they did get to see Dr Frome convince a young Ukrainian refugee to speak again in this final episode.
Not to mention the fact that Iggy and his ex-husband decided to get married again just in time for the show to end.