The BBC America/Netfix TV Series (2016-17)

It was a bit of shock when “Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency” TV series, co-produced and distributed by BBC America and Netflix, was announced. Only a few years before, an other “Dirk Genlty” TV shows has been produced then axed by BBC Four after only four episodes.

The idea of the show came from IDW Entertainment and Arvind Ethan David (the guy who co-wrote in the nineties “Dirk Gently – the play” with James Goss while he was a student in Cambridge). David also started the Dirk Gently comics for IDW in 2015.

As expected, the US TV version, with showrunner Max Landis, has almost nothing to do with the two Dirk Gently novels penned by Douglas Adams. It only keeps the main character, Dirk Gently (with a lot of changes), the global idea of a Holistic Detective and the absurdity. The action takes place in American and all the other characters are new. 

Dirk Genlty is played by english actor Samuel Barnett (The History Boys) and has a sidekick named Todd played by Elijah Wood (The Lord of the Rings). Landis developped a fair amount of excentric characters :

– Amanda (Hannah Marks) : Todd’s sister, who has a diseaser that make her suffer vivid and painful hallucinations)
– Farah Black (Jade Eshete) : an (apparently) efficient and tough security officer
– Bart Curlish (Fiona Dourif) : a “holistic” assassin
– Martin (Michael Eklund) : the leader of a “vampire” group called the Rowdy 3. They live by eating people’s emotional energy

The first series (eight epidodes of 50 minutes) was first broadcast on BBC America between October and December 2016 and was then avalaible on Netflix worldwide.

The second season (ten episodes of 50 minutes) was broadcast on BBC America between October and December 2017 and then avalaible wordlwide on Netflix.

Following the broadcast of the second season finale, BBC America announced the show’s cancellation. A petition created by fans on change.org gathered almost 150.000 signatures : “Dirk Gently is loved by many for being very original while being based on Douglas Adams’ novels. The entire cast and acting has been astounding for the two seasons it was on air, as well as the amazing writing and direction it has taken. I hope that BBC, AMC, or Netflix will renew this awesome TV show for many seasons to come and that Arvind Ethan David is able to continue his wild and ambitious tv show with the many talented people working on it. Renew Dirk Gently!”

To this day (July 2019), there has no news regarding a third TV series. It’s safe to say that if it was the case, Max Landis wouldn’t be working anymore on the Dirk TV series (he has been accused of sexual assault by several women since december 2017)