The Breaks, a standout drama based in the early days of hip-hop’s rise to the heights of pop culture ubiquity, has been canceled by BET following its move to that channel from VH1 earlier this year, according to The Hollywood Reporter. With a plot revolving around the exploits of a DJ, a rapper, and an industry hustler set in 1991, The Breaks was heavily focused on the behind-the-scenes networking and deal-making that made hip-hop a creative and commercial force to be reckoned with. I was based on Dan Charnas’ bestseller The Big Payback.
However, with this cancellation, fans of the show will be left hanging, and the stories of Deevee, Ahm, Nikki, and the magnificently performed Barry Fouray will be left unresolved. The Breaks was by no means a breakout hit in the vein of shows like Empire but pulled in a perfectly respectable million viewers a week on VH1.
However, with VH1 and BET’s parent company Viacom seeking to revitalize the latter, the heady drama was likely deemed too expensive in the face of other fall pickups. The company is on the hook for In Contempt, a procedural starring Erica Ash; The Quad, The Comedy Get Down, and Hit The Floor, which features lesser-known actors. The Breaks, meanwhile, was headed up by a largely recognizable cast led by Wood Harris and Tristan Wilds, and featured cameo appearances from many of the legendary hip-hop pioneers the show referenced in both dialogue and its soundtrack.