The short-lived show Reunion, created by Jon Harmon Feldman (who also created the prematurely cancelled 2003-05 series, Tru Calling), centers on the lives of six friends. The show premiered with the murder of one of the friends at a 20-year high school reunion. The series then followed the criminal investigation in the present, while flashing back to the characters’ past — one episode covering one year of their lives, starting with 1986 and working forward to the present.
To date, nine episodes have aired and 13 have been produced. Production was halted after the show was cancelled and its 13 episode original order (up to 1998, eight years before the murder happened) were completed.
As a result, viewers were left hanging. Creator Feldman said that, because of the nature of the show, it was unlikely that the killer of Alexa Davalos’ character “Samantha” would ever be revealed.
In December, Feldman said “The show was intricately plotted over 22 episodes to tell the full story of our characters’ lives (and deaths). Because the events of Samantha’s murder are partially reliant on characters we haven’t yet met — and events we haven’t yet seen — there is no way to solve the mystery of her murder without being able to complete the full arc of our story through present-day.”
Despite an outpouring of fan support, it doesn’t look like the show will be resurrected but a FOX executive has given a clue as to the identity of who the killer was (probably) going to be.
At the recent Television Critics Association press tour, FOX Entertainment president Peter Ligouri discussed the show’s premature finish. Ligouri shared, “Reunion was particularly cumbersome in terms of trying to provide an ending for the audience. How [creator Jon Harmon Feldman] was laying out the show to gap those additional years was an incredibly complex path. There were a number of options, and he didn’t make a definitive decision on which option he was going to go with as to who the killer was, and there was just no way to accelerate that time.”
He went on to say that the network and the show’s writers talked about several options for the killer’s identity, but “the best guess was (at that particular time) that it was going to be Sam’s daughter,” whom she had given up for adoption in the first episodes. The exact reason for the murder remains a mystery.
Despite the show’s failure to find an audience (averaging 4.3 million viewers), Ligouri said FOX won’t shy away from trying unique forms of storytelling in the future.
“It is regrettable when stories end before their time. I don’t think that should stop us from being ambitious with serialized storytelling. We put these shows on and we’re going to continue to put these shows on every year with every good intention to end them, but eventually the audience votes.”