Shows I Loved That Were Cancelledby Cosmic_Cre | created - 01 Jul 2011 | updated - 4 months ago | Public
Now, this is my own wish list of shows I loved that I personally believe got the ax unjustly, so please no mean comments if you don't agree. Thanks!
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1. Carnivàle (2003–2005)
TV-MA | 55 min | Drama, Fantasy, Mystery
During the Great Depression, an Oklahoma farm boy and a charismatic minister learn that they are key players in a proxy war being fought between Heaven and Hell.
It was supremely dark day in television when this show got cancelled. Bold, original and complex in it's execution and storytelling, each week I waited on pins and needles wondering how this show was going to reach its dramatic conclusion. I and the other fans of this show were given pieces of a very large and complicated puzzle that we all knew was going to lead to something of epic proportion. We never got a chance to see was that was and I'm still angry with HBO to this day! >:(
2. Murder in Small Town X (2001– )
60 min | Game-Show, Mystery, Reality-TV
Murder in Small Town X is an unscripted drama series in which ten ordinary people compete to track down a fictional killer in a town filled with improvisational actors playing the suspects and witnesses.
This was a reality show worth getting addicted to. A group of contestants get a crash course in forensics to solve a mock murder in a make-believe town. Those that get voted off get the chance to either find a crucial clue to the identity of the murderer or THEY GET "MURDERED" themselves! The show was creepy, thought provoking and a breath of fresh air in the monotonous world of reality television.
3. Dark Shadows (1991)
45 min | Drama, Horror, Romance
Victoria Winters comes to Collinwood, an isolated mansion in Maine, to work as a governess, but soon finds herself drawn into a strange world of vampires, ghosts and curses.
The revamped (no pun intended) version of Dark Shadows. I loved the modern retelling of this show and thought Ben Cross and Joanna Going were wonderful in it. Each week I was dying to know how this was going to end. Unfortunately, I never got to find out.
4. Rags to Riches (1987–1988)
60 min | Comedy, Drama, Family
A wealthy widowed businessman adopts five daughters to live with him at his mansion.
A quirky musical show set in the 60's about a millionaire that adopts 5 orphaned girls to boost his public image and ends up becoming a real father to them. Yes, the concept was cheesy, but I did loved the musical numbers and Tisha Campbell.
5. Nightmare Cafe (1992– )
60 min | Horror, Thriller
Frank Nolan and Fay Peronivic find themselves in a mysterious all-night café following a brush with death, but they soon learn that they did, in fact, die, and have been brought back to ... See full summary »
Robert Englund stars as the proprietor of a mysterious cafe used as a way for wayward individuals to find redemption or (if they were bad people) to get their just desserts. It was very "Twilight Zone" in it's nature and I wish it was allowed to stay on long enough to find an audience.
6. Booker (1989–1990)
60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Dennis Booker, an ex-cop, is hired by the US office of a large Japanese company to investigate some suspect insurance claims. He is very anti-authority, resents being told what to do, and ... See full summary »
This spinoff from "21 Jump Street" lasted only one season, but I think that it's downfall was that Richard Greico was no Johnny Depp. Depp fans were and are very loyal to him and felt Greico was trying to replace him. They made their displeasure known and the show suffered for it unfortuately. :(
7. In Living Color (1990–1994)
TV-14 | 30 min | Comedy
The Wayans siblings present an African-American focused sketch comedy show.
This was must see TV in our house back in the 90s. Created by the Wayans family and consisting of a mostly black cast, this Fox show was cutting edge and fearless when satirizing race relations, celebrities, politics, etc. Plus, the array of hilarious characters that showed up each week... Homey the Clown, Fire Marshall Bill, Frenchy, Blaine and Antoine, Grandpa Joe and more! The best show from my teen years!! :D
8. New York Undercover (1994–1999)
TV-14 | 60 min | Crime, Drama
Drugs, robbery, corruption, rape, murder. Cops versus criminals. The undercover war has started. Welcome to New York City.
The rise and fall of this gritty police drama is a great case for the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" argument. The show already had a huge following among the Black and Latino communities(mainly due to the strong and positive portrayals of J.C. Williams and Eddie Torres by the two lead actors Malik Yoba and Michael DeLorenzo). But TIIC at Fox felt that wasn't enough and wanted the show to appeal to a wider audience(or should I say "whiter" audience).
So, they took out everything that made the show special and unique, i.e. all the R&B and hip-hop music including the nightclub, Natalie's, that would every week showcase the hottest acts in R&B, hip-hop, blues, and Latin music, they killed off Torres and replaced him with two new white characters(Marisa Ryan and Josh Hopkins), they got rid of Lt. Cooper (Patti D'Arbanville) and the 4th precinct and replaced her with Lt. Barker(Tommy Ford) and had the characters working out of an abandoned plant. This great show was just turned into a huge mess and a shell of it's former self for no reason at all. Pathetic!! >:(
9. Resurrection Blvd. (2000–2002)
60 min | Drama
Daily troubles and triumphs of a struggling caring Latino family.
I can't talk about one Michael DeLorenzo show and not talk about this show as well because it was just as great and just as unfairly axed as "New York Undercover".
In East Los Angeles, California, the Santiago family has had three generations of boxers within the family. They continue their battle to become boxing champions while struggling with the difficulties of making life choices and breaking away from family tradition. Roberto Santiago (Tony Plana) is ill and struggles as he watches his family cope with the various hardships they must face.
10. Starman (1986–1987)
60 min | Sci-Fi
An alien returns to Earth years after an earlier visit to reunite with his Earth son and together, they search for the alien's human wife.
This was the series version of the movie of the same name. Instead of Jeff Bridges, we get Robert Hayes from the "Airplane" movies as Starman. He returns to earth to find Jenny Hayden, the woman he left behind with the help of their son, Scott who hadn't seen her since he was a baby played by C. D. Barnes. Think of elements of "Touched by An Angel" and "Highway To Heaven" to describe the premise of this show because the two managed to help a lot of people along the way. Very sad casualty of low ratings and eventual cancellation.
11. Amazing Stories (1985–1987)
PG | 30 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Truly amazing, fantastical, funny, and odd, and sometimes scary, sad, and endearing stories are portrayed. Many famous actors, actresses, and directors made guest appearances.
Can't tell you how much I wanted this series to last. From the weird to the scary and sometimes, to the endearing, Steven Spielberg truly brought us some amazing stories with this show. My favorite episodes will always be "Thanksgiving", "Miscalculation", "The Mission" and "Go To the Head Of the Class". Wonderful show!
12. The Storyteller (1987– )
225 min | Adventure, Drama, Family
An old storyteller tells European folk tales to his sarcastic dog.
This was a show that wasn't afraid to tell the real versions of classic fairy tales, no matter how dark or disturbing. The stories weren't silly or sugarcoated for kids like things are nowadays and that's what I miss about this show. Plus, it was Jim Henson as his finest! :D
13. Hull High (1990– )
60 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical
Teen soap musical about the students and teachers of the Cordell Hull High, a hip, urban, racially-mixed high school. Breakdancing rap group the Hull High Devils serves as the modern version of the Greek chorus in the show.
Another musical show but this was set in a high school. This was basically the precursor to the "High School Musical" craze since it was made by the same people. Who knew back in the 90s that the show was just ahead of its time.
14. American Gothic (1995–1996)
60 min | Drama, Horror, Thriller
The show is set in the town of Trinity, South Carolina. Lucas Buck, the local sheriff, has supernatural powers. He uses these powers to manipulate people into making evil choices. Lucas ... See full summary »
Another horror/mystery show that was cancelled before we have the chance to figure out what exactly is going on. It centers around Caleb(Lucas Black) who's the result of his mother being raped by the town sheriff(Gary Cole) who is also the epitome of evil. An original premise that was unfortunately not appreciated at the time it was on the air.
15. Spicy City (1997)
TV-MA | Animation, Adventure, Crime
An anthology of sexy and risque animated stories in a futuristic city with a seamy side.
Huge fan of Ralph Bakshi and this series has his signature all over it. Racy images, graphic sexuality and violent situations ran rampant in this weekly series set in the near future. I wish Bakshi would have made more episodes because it was as spicy as its name suggests.
16. Max Headroom (1987–1988)
60 min | Comedy, Sci-Fi
In the near future, an intrepid investigative TV reporter does his job with the help of his colleagues and a computerized version of himself.
Set "20 minutes into the future", this ABC sci-fi series starred Matt Frewer as Edison Carter, an investigative reporter in a futuristic dystopian world where everything is run by corrupt television networks. After being injured in the field while investigating the corrupt practices of the networks, to save his memories, they are transferred into a computer program version of Edison calling himself "Max Headroom". Max learns very quickly and becomes not only an extension of Edison but a free-thinking entity unto himself.
17. Eerie, Indiana (1991–1992)
TV-Y7 | 30 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama
Teenager and weirdness investigator Marshall Teller goes through adventures in his new small-town home with his two friends, geeky Simon and mysterious Dash X.
Think of it as "Twilight Zone" meets "Goosebumps". The show centers around two boys, Marshall and Simon, and the weird town they live in. Not mainstream enough to stay on the air, but the show still has a massive cult following.
18. Braingames (1983–1985)
60 min | Animation
"Braingames" originally a was a program that aired Mondays on HBO in 1983 and are also available as series of interactive videocassettes that integrate history, art, music, culture, and ... See full summary »
I loved this show because it was just so much fun! This was pretty much the predecessor for the show "Crashbox". The concept is the same, a kid's show that had various brain teasers to solve.
19. Not Necessarily the News (1982–1990)
An offbeat look at current events, often by dubbing over news video with farcical commentary.
How could you not love a show where real news footage is hilariously overdubbed and had a segment called ''Sniglets?"
20. You Can't Do That on Television (1979–1990)
TV-PG | 30 min | Family, Comedy
Sketch TV by young amateur actors in true classic Nick-style. But whatever you do, never admit that you don't know or ask for water.
This was the show that pretty much defined my childhood. A cool and quirky sketch comedy show that was one of the early successes of a then unknown upstart cable channel called "Nickelodeon". I wish there was a channel that only showed classic Nick shows for people like me who miss them and this should be at the top of the list! :D
21. Queer Eye (2003–2007)
TV-14 | 60 min | Comedy, Reality-TV
Five gay men try to improve the lives and confidence of straight men by giving them makeovers and advice.
Queer Eye was me and my mom's obsession years ago! We loved these guys! The show is premised on and plays with the stereotypes that gay men are superior in matters of fashion, style, personal grooming, interior design and culture. In each episode, the team of five gay men(Ted Allen, Kyan Douglas, Thom Filicia, Carson Kressley and Jai Rodriguez) known collectively as the "Fab Five" perform a makeover (in the parlance of the show, a "make-better") on a person, usually a straight man, revamping his wardrobe, redecorating his home and offering advice on grooming, lifestyle and food
22. The Muppets. (2015–2016)
TV-PG | 21 min | Comedy, Family
Jim Henson's lovable Muppets return to the small screen in this mockumentary-style series that follows their personal and professional lives.
This series was set in Los Angeles and depicted the everyday personal and professional lives of The Muppets during production of Up Late with Miss Piggy; a fictional late-night talk show starring Miss Piggy. I swear to God, I don't understand some people! This show was hilarious and it got axed unfairly just because it wasn't the same format of the original Muppet Show. People need to realize that variety shows went out in the early 80s. It wouldn't work today. The show didn't fail because it was bad, the audience's misplaced nostalgia made it fail. >:(
23. Generations (1989–1991)
30 min | Drama
Soap opera about two families, one black and one white.
The first television soap opera centered mostly around an African-American family. I miss this show very much and wish that I could see where the lives of all these characters would have gone. I guess it's for the best since soaps nowadays are dying off one by one. :(
24. Night Flight (1981–1988)
Animation, Comedy, Horror
Late night USA Network program that showed B-movies, rock videos, and offbeat shorts.
Night Flight was a variety show that had it all. Music videos, stand-up comedy, spoofs, animation, short films, etc. Almost if YouTube had its own show. Awesome 80s programming that was shown on the USA network back when it was edgy.
25. Underground (2016– )
TV-MA | 43 min | Adventure, Drama, History
With the country on the brink of Civil War, the struggle for freedom is more dangerous than ever. Underground tells the story of American heroes and their harrowing journey to freedom, with... See full summary »
In 1857, a group of slaves on a Georgia plantation known as the Macon 7 make the dangerous decision to journey 600 miles north for the promise of freedom. I didn't want to add this show to the list because I'm still hoping it could get resurrected on another network, but it's getting less and less likely. :(
26. The Guys Next Door (1990– )
30 min | Comedy, Music
In the spirit of Kidd Video (and supposedly an alternitive to New Kids on the Block), the Guys Next Door was about five guys who lived in a huge house. The show consisted of comedy skits ... See full summary »
This was like the Monkees, 90s style. At the time, New Kids on the Block was the hottest act on the planet and this show was NBC's way of cashing in on that by forming their own boy band. Almost the same way the Monkees were formed as an American version of the Beatles. Liked the songs, loved the guys. Not exactly a deep show, but who cares?! :D
27. Haywire (1990–1991)
This show was a sketch comedy show that ran from 90-91 on Fox. It was zany, offbeat and out of it's mind, which is why I liked it. I guess to most people, it was too over the top. :(
28. Turkey Television (1985– )
TV-Y | 30 min | Comedy
A series comprised entirely of short (several per episode) comedy sketches. Recurring bits included "Kentucky Boys," a pair of stereotypical hicks discussing life; "Ivan Tellalie," Soviet ... See full summary »
How could I forget this gem from my childhood? A show on Nickelodeon featuring various comedy sketches, music videos and parodies from all over the world. Funny show!
29. Sledge Hammer! (1986–1988)
30 min | Action, Comedy
The adventures of a deranged and dumb police detective who always looks for the most violent solution to any problem.
LOL! This show was like "Dirty Harry" meets "The Naked Gun". It was basically a spoof on those cop on the edge personas you saw in Clint Eastwood and Charles Bronson movies in the 80s taken to the nth degree. Hilarious show!
30. The Mommies (1993–1995)
30 min | Comedy, Romance
Two typical moms, Marilyn and Caryl, live a suburban life with husbands Jack and Paul plus assorted children. Their neighborhood is shook up by perfect Barb, house dad Tom, and Marilyn's divorce from Jack.
I wish this show had a chance to be tweaked because I've always loved Caryl Kristensen and Marilyn Kentz and their stand-up shows. Unfortunately, their stand-up act didn't translate well to the small screen.
31. Werewolf (1987–1988)
30 min | Horror, Thriller
Young Eric has been bitten by a werewolf. However, he's not particularly thrilled by this turn of affairs and wishes to escape his curse. To do so, he must find and kill the founder of his ... See full summary »
An old Fox network show starring John J. York as Eric Cord, a young college student who was transformed into a werewolf by his friend. Now to sever the bloodline and get his life back, he has to find a drifter named Janos Skorzeny, played by the late Chuck Connors(this was actually his last role), who he thinks is the originator of his bloodline. Another show I wish had the chance to continue.
32. Vanishing Son (1995– )
60 min | Adventure
13 episodes of this syndicated show were produced in 1994 and 1995 and first aired in January 1995. Jian-Wa comes to America from Beijing with his brother Wago to find freedom. Wago, who is... See full summary »
Russell Wong starred as Jian-Wa Chang, a musician who escaped from the People's Republic of China after being involved in a student demonstration against the government. He and his brother Wago escaped to the USA; he pursued his music while Wago became drawn to a life of organized crime.
Wago and two US Federal Agents are killed; Jian-Wa is held responsible, but a Vietnamese mafioso known as "The General" (Haing S. Ngor) is behind the murders. Jian-Wa becomes a fugitive, using his wisdom, music, and martial arts skills to solve problems along the way, on his quest to bring "The General" to justice. As he helps others while traveling, he is aided by the spirit of his murdered brother Wago. I was too in love with Russell Wong because of this series!! :D <3
33. Mortal Kombat: Conquest (1998–1999)
40 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
In this prequel to the movies, Kung Lao has triumphed in the Mortal Kombat tournament, defeating Shang Tsung and saving Earth Realm. Now, he must train a new generation of warriors for the ... See full summary »
I remember liking this show a lot and how it's sort of a prequel to the "Mortal Kombat" universe set 500 years in the past.
34. Catwalk (1992–1994)
50 min | Drama, Music
Six young adults attempt to fulfill their dream of fame and fortune by putting together a pop band. Unfortunately they realize that the road to celebrity is paved with uncertainty. Their ... See full summary »
A syndicated series about a club band trying to make it to the big time. Loved the music and how different the characters were from one another, looks and personality wise. This starred a young Neve Campbell.
35. The Insiders (1985–1986)
60 min | Crime, Drama
Miami Vice-styled show about Nick, an undercover reporter who works for nationally syndicated Newspoint. Only Mackey, a hustler, ex-con and Nick's main contact on the street, and Alice West, the paper's editor, know his true identity.
This was pretty much a poor man's "Miami Vice" complete with a black and a white guy solving crimes(not as detectives but as an investigative reporter and an ex-con) and a rockin' theme song(this time by Genesis not Jan Hammer). It was not as hard hitting or as edgy as "Miami Vice" but I thought it was great in it's own way and I personally thought Nicholas Campbell and Stoney Jackson were way hotter than Don Johnson or Phillip M. Thomas. ;)
36. The Outsiders (1990)
60 min | Drama
Francis Ford Coppola and S.E. Hinton's 13-episode follow-up to the 1983 movie, which builds on each character from the film immensely. Series finale (entitled "Union Blues") reaches an ... See full summary »
Of course, this is based on the movie and book of the same name. It's about the continuing saga centering around the lives of The Curtis brothers, their Greaser friends(minus Dallas Winston because the show starts after he'd being shot and killed by the police) and their rivalry with the Socs. Wish it had stayed on more than 13 episodes.
37. Spitting Image (1984–1996)
25 min | Comedy
A satire show using puppets that are charicatures of major public figures.
I remember watching this as a kid, thinking the puppets were cool and at the same time, kinda creepy.
38. Tarzán (1991–1995)
30 min | Adventure
Tarzan had no formal education and spoke in broken English. Jane was a French environmental scientist working on ways to save endangered species. Roger Taft was the son of a wealthy New ... See full summary »
Wolf Larson in a loincloth... need I say more?
39. Brotherly Love (1995–1997)
30 min | Comedy
A year after his father's fatal accident, Joe Roman returns to Philadelphia to collect his share of his Dad's estate, a car customizing business. His reunion with Claire and his ... See full summary »
Starring the cute and lovable Lawrence brothers, this short-lived sitcom centered around Joey, Matthew and Andrew Lawrence and a family garage owned by the boys' late father. I would have love to see where this show would have gone if it stayed on the air.
40. Solid Gold (1980–1988)
60 min | Music
Television show featuring dancing and popular music.
Three words: SOLID GOLD DANCERS! God, I wanted to be one! :D
41. Pinwheel (1976– )
TV-Y | 30 min | Family
This children's variety show from Nickelodeon's early days featured puppets interacting with live actors in "Sesame Street"-like situations, along with various animated shorts from overseas... See full summary »
Even though I'm not a kid anymore, I really do miss this show. Love the various skits, animated shorts and the live action puppets.
42. Puttin' on the Hits (1984–1985)
TV-G | 30 min | Game-Show, Music
Contestants compete by lip syncing the words to popular songs, creating the illusion that they are the artist or group performing live.
This show was a lip-syncing contest show where contestants would perform using outrageous costumes and props for a weekly prizes of $1000 and a chance to compete for the big $25,000 prizes.
43. Dance Fever (1979–1987)
30 min | Game-Show, Music
Lotsa dancin', disco music 'n tight pants!
Before "Dancing With the Stars" and "So You Think You Can Dance" was "Dance Fever"! This was a weekly show that was aired Saturday afternoon featuring dancers(couples mostly) competing for cash prizes. As much as I loved the dancing, I mostly tuned in to see Deney Terrio and then later in the series, Adrian Zmed, whom I thought was sooo hot!! ;D
44. The Puzzle Place (1994–1998)
TV-Y | 30 min | Family
A group of kids (puppets) from diverse backgrounds and cultures come together at "The Puzzle Place" to hang-out, tell stories, sing songs and hold celebrations. Along the way they learn ... See full summary »
Even though I was in high school when this show was on, I use to watch it when I would babysit my niece who was around two at the time. I thought this was an adorable show that mostly focused on race relations and cultural differences between six children.
Leon, who's black from NYC... Skye, who's Native American from Arizona... Kiki, who's Mexican American from San Antonio, TX... Julie, who's Chinese American from San Francisco, CA... Ben, who's white from South Dakota and Jody, who's Jewish from Cincinnati, OH who all come together at this magical playhouse called the Puzzle Place to share their cultural customs with one another. A sweet and wonderful show that only lasted three seasons and then abruptly cancelled with no reruns. It's sad because very few people even remember this show while crap like "Barney and Friends" and "The Wiggles" will seemingly never die. :P
45. The Comic Strip (1987– )
TV-G | Animation, Family, Comedy
Animated anthology series featuring four different segments.
*C-O-M-I-C... S-T-R-I-P, come and take a trip on the Comic Strip!!* I remember this show like it was yesterday. Another show that very few remember but me and my siblings absolutely loved! The Comic Strip was a show featuring four different cartoons. "Tiger Sharks" was pretty much a show in the same vein as "Thundercats" and "Silver Hawks" mainly because it was made by the same people about anamorphic sea people. "Karate Kat" was about a mild mannered cat who was a secret karate expert using his skills to fight crime. "Mini-Monsters" was about a camp that catered to the children of famous monsters and the normal brother and sister who were accidentally sent there and "Street Frogs" was about, get this, hip hop frogs!! When I say hip hop, I mean rappers. :D
46. Out of Control (1984–1985)
TV-G | 30 min | Adventure, Comedy, Family
Dave and his friends host this zany sketch comedy variety show for kids.
Another comedic gem from Nickelodeon's golden era. This starred Dave Coulier as “himself” hosting an outrageous news program (of sorts) that was more about the “news” show being made than it was about the news being presented by its quirky cast of characters. Some reoccurring sketches were Are We There Yet?, Let's Eat, How Not To Do Things and Fast-Told Fairy Tales. A quirky show that unfortunately only lasted on season. :(
47. Read All About It! (1979– )
15 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy
A group of kids investigate and oppose an extra-terrestrial conspiracy against their town as a community newspaper staff.
This was a show that I remember having to watch in elementary school. It was an old PBS show who main goal of the show was to educate viewers in reading, writing and history. When three kids explore a coach house held by a missing Uncle of one of the kids, they discover far more than they bargained.
They discover two robots, Otto and Theta, who tell them about a dire threat of a conspiracy against the town. By accident, they also discover a teleport machine that can take them to planet Trialveron controlled by the alien tyrant, Duneedon. Against this threat, the kids decide to use the coach-house as the base for a community newspaper both to keep the building and investigate the conspiracy. Along the way, they learn about writing and its various practical uses as they fight the alien forces that oppose them. This show use to scare the bejesus out of me! O.o
48. Dangerous Minds (1996–1997)
60 min | Drama
Based on the major motion picture starring Michelle Pfeiffer.
This is the series version based on the movie of the same name. This time, instead of Michelle Pfeiffer, we get Annie Potts as real life Marine veteran Louanne Johnson who is an unconventional teacher that inspires her class of bright but "difficult" inner-city students, and makes a real difference in their lives, outside school as well as inside. I wish this stayed on more than one season, because this had the potential of being great.
49. Nasty Boys (1990– )
60 min | Action, Crime
The Nasty Boys are a special unit of the North Las Vegas Police Department. The unit consists of undercover cops and their identities are withheld, even from the department. They only ... See full summary »
Nasty Boys was about the North Las Vegas Police narcotics unit consisting of six undercover police officers who fought crime in drug-ridden neighborhoods using “unorthodox” methods. The show starred Benjamin Bratt, Don Franklin, Craig Hurley, Jeff Kaake, James Pax, and Dennis Franz, who played Lieutenant Stan Krieger. William Russ played Lieutenant Farlow in the pilot movie and was killed off unexpectedly. The theme song was "Nasty" by Janet Jackson. Very cool show that I wish stayed on longer than 13 episodes.
50. Napoleon Dynamite (2012)
TV-PG | 30 min | Animation, Comedy