It has been a difficult journey for Y: The Last Man to find a place in the media world. The celebrated Vertigo comic book series by Brian K. Vaughn and Pia Guerra has been the subject of film and television adaptations for years. It neared pilot stage a number of times and also nearly became a feature film, but plans broke down when the studio did not want to commit to a three-film series. A television show was always its best destiny.
The rough waters seemed to calm last year when FX ordered a pilot from former American Gods co-showrunner Michael Green and Aida Mashaka Croal. Set in a world in which nearly all the mammals with the Y chromosome suddenly die, remaining males Yorick Brown (Barry Keoghan) and his pet monkey, Ampersand, travel with a former government agent and a geneticist across the partially collapsed United States — and then the world — to find out why they survived and if they can salvage the human race before almost certain extinction. The pilot also featured Diane Lane as Senator Brown, Yorick’s mother, and a cast including Imogen Poots, Lashana Lynch, Juliana Canfield, Marin Ireland, and Amber Tamblyn.
FX commissioned the series back in February, but the troubled waters seemed to rise again with the departures of Green and Croal. In June, The Killing‘s Eliza Clark signed on to replace the former showrunners with the understanding the cast would remain the same. At the same time, FX declared it would not go forward with the show “in its current form,” making some wonder if the project’s destiny was a long-term stay in development hell.
But in an Instagram post (spotted by The Beat), Vaughn clarified the series is still on target for a 2020 premiere and that it is in “excellent hands” with Clark and her “intimidating squad of all-stars.” He also noted Y is not the easiest comic book to adapt, and the decade spent developing it into a media property only underscores that fact.
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The show must go on! Sorry for two Hollywood sellout posts in one day, but I just got back from the writers’ room for Y (still coming to FX in 2020!), and I’m very pleased to say the series is in excellent hands with new showrunner @elizaaclarkw and her intimidating squad of all-stars. TV is goddamn hard, and if the last 17 years have taught co-creator @pia.guerra and me anything, it’s that our story is particularly challenging to adapt, so I’m very grateful to everyone who’s helped get Yorick & Co. this far, especially Michael Green and Aïda Croal. Anyway, stay tuned, very good (monkey) shit coming your way soon. #ythelastman #fx #ampersand #poop
Y: The Last Man is slated to debut in 2020.