The Hollywood Reporter noted, "After several days spent weighing the implications of moving forward with the reality show, MTV brass ultimately decided it would be imprudent to do so. The move -- a bid to avoid any potential controversy as well as a recognition that Gandee was the show's breakout star -- comes after a heavily hyped and ultimately successful first season."
MTV released the following statement about its decision to cancel "Buckwild" and announced an upcoming special:
"After careful consideration, MTV will not be moving forward with season two of 'BUCKWILD' in West Virginia. We love the cast and the show and this was not an easy decision, but given Shain's tragic passing and essential presence on the show, we felt it was not appropriate to continue without him. Instead, we are working on a meaningful way to pay tribute to his memory on our air and privately.
On Sunday, we will be running a special 'BUCKWILD: WV to the NYC,' which was shot before production had begun on season two. With the support of his parents, Dale and Loretta Gandee, we will run the tribute following a day of programming dedicated to Shain in which we will air the entire first season of 'BUCKWILD'."
According to THR's source, "internal conversations were had on the day of Gandee's death about potentially 'softening' the show, which has focused on such behavior as off-roading, tire roll-downs and hard partying. But doing so likely would prove incongruous with the show's brand -- and potentially turn off viewers in the process."
In response to MTV's decision to cancel "Buckwild," Shain's mom Lortetta Gandee released the following statement:
“Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and prayers during this incredibly difficult time for our family. We have truly felt all the love and know that Shain is resting peacefully. Shain was an incredible, outgoing, and positive person who was loved by whoever he met. We are honored that we were able to let the world see what a wonderful son we had. He was the best son anyone could ask for. As we look to honor him in our lives every day moving forward, we are happy to share some of his last moments doing what he loved best: having fun and making people laugh."
Twenty-one-year-old Shain Gandee was found dead in his SUV, with two other passengers, including his 48-year-old uncle, David Gandee. The cause of death was determined to be carbon monoxide poisoning, after the vehicle became stuck in mud which submerged the tailpipe.
“We are shocked and saddened by the terrible news about Shain Gandee, and those involved in this tragic incident," MTV said in a statement after the news broke. "We are waiting for more information but at this time, our main concern is for the Gandee family and their friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with them. Shain had a magnetic personality, with a passion for life that touched everyone he met and we will miss him dearly."
The series was originally renewed for a second season in early February, after averaging 3 million viewers per episode.