Ultimately, the fight for “Warrior Nun” is about more than a single television series. In so many ways, its success and premature cancelation, the party line Netflix clung to in the latter’s aftermath, and the campaign to bring it back are all elements of an even greater conflict — a single battle in the ongoing war for the very soul of storytelling.
It may be an unfair burden to bear, but what happens next will determine what kind of lesson Netflix, and studios, and streamers in general, all take away from this “Warrior Nun” journey. And for better or worse, that lesson will have an impact on which stories get to see the light of day, the form those stories take, and the quality and level of depth they possess. In more concrete terms: if these films are even remotely successful, they’ll reinforce the lesson every algorithm-driven company has been running on for the last handful of years: that as long as you slap the right title on a project, and churn out as much content as possible under that title’s umbrella, viewers will continue to show up.
Netflix, in particular, will learn that it can continue cancel high-quality series that don’t immediately play to the largest audience possible, then wait for someone else to take the risk of bringing it back in some form, before finally hopping back on the bandwagon by bringing the story back in a freshly diluted form. And make no mistake — this upcoming iteration of “Warrior Nun” will be, at best, a mere shadow of the original … unless, that is, the trilogy fails significantly enough to usher in a turning point.