In 2018, HBO breathlessly announced a brand-new drama from one of television’s most celebrated auteurs. The network was, it said, “honoured” to be providing a home for The Nevers, Joss Whedon’s long-awaited return to the small screen. A complex Victorian-era fantasy led by tormented female protagonists with supernatural powers, it had the Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator’s fingerprints all over it. Whedon would be writer, director and executive producer, and described his “odd, intimate epic” as “the most ambitious narrative” he had ever created.
Then, in November the same year, Whedon abruptly abandoned his passion project. He attributed his exit to tiredness. In a statement, HBO said: “We have parted ways with Joss Whedon. We remain excited about the future of The Nevers and look forward to its premiere.