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December 22, 2014

What's the greatest short-lived show of all-time?

by Bob Sassone, posted Mar 24th 2009 3:03PM
Brisco and CometWe've talked a lot about great short-lived shows here at TV Squad. We even have a whole category for them. But it's always good to revisit the topic to see what you readers think.

Over at Entertainment Weekly, they've chosen the 25 great TV shows that got a quick hook, the shows that got canceled (way) before their time (we're talking really short runs, so Arrested Development and Sports Night aren't on the list). There are several shows on the list that you would expect to see (Freaks and Geeks, My So-Called Life, Firefly), some surprise entries that made me happy to see on there (The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr, Frank's Place, Karen Sisco, Now & Again), and a few head-scratchers (Malibu Road? Really?). It's slightly heavy on the current side, with Journeyman and Life on Mars on the list. I mean, Life on Mars is still running new episodes.

But now comes the time when you and I get together to try to figure out which shows didn't make it to the list.

How about Private Eye, the NBC series from the late 80s that starred Michael Woods and Josh Brolin? I'd pick Surface over Invasion. We talked about Eyes earlier today. And what about The Fifth Corner? Shannon's Deal? Police Squad?

What's on your list? Shows that ran one season or less and shouldn't have been canceled.

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Laura

What about "The Nine" on ABC??? It was the story of nine survivors of a hostage standoff/bank robbery. It began by showing how the characters tried to resume their lives after their traumatic experience. Each episode would also reveal - little by little - what happened to them during the hostage standoff. One day it just stopped! I think they only showed 7 or 8 episodes, and it was such a bummer to be left hanging like that!

April 07 2009 at 6:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
WhyBother

There was a sitcom in the 80's that I still remember as one of the funniest things I've ever seen. It was called Best of the West. It lasted one season. Anyone remember it?

April 07 2009 at 3:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
deebopalula

Just got reminded of another one -- "Life With Bonnie" starring Bonnie Hunt. No laugh track and mostly ad libbed. Everyone on the show was great!

March 31 2009 at 11:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
B-Boy

I've been watching television for 45 years and Journeyman is very high on my all time list!

March 26 2009 at 4:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mark

My vote is for the Black Donnellys. I thought it was a great show but it only lasted a handful of episodes. They never even aired all the episodes that were produced.

March 26 2009 at 4:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Zandra

Wow, forgot about Homefront - great show! Does anyone recall some years back something like young Elvis? Was very well done and gone in a flash?

March 26 2009 at 11:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
crammond

Moonlight - - I will forever mourn its passing! I hesitate getting involved with any new show now.

March 25 2009 at 8:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
metz

Police Squad, Boomtown, EZ Streets, Firefly, Drive, Journeyman, and Quark.

All shows just hitting their stride when canned.

March 25 2009 at 5:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dara

And anyone else remember Sleepwalkers?

March 25 2009 at 4:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Joel

I know someone already mentioned Reunion, but i don't think they did that justice. That show was very addicting and i just recently had a friend watch it and he is pissed at me now because it was so good but doesn't have an ending...side note: for those who did watch and are interested, Sam's daughter ends up killing her.

Another show i just thought of as i was reading this was a show called Freaky Links. it was kinda an xfiles for twenty somethings. It starred Ethan Embry. Im probably the only one who liked it.

March 25 2009 at 4:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Joel's comment
Dara

No, you're not the only one, I liked it too! It's funny how many shows tried to do variations on the supernatural stuff, Brimstone, Haunted (which was Matthew Fox as a detective who could see ghosts after a near-death experience) Freaky-links , Strange Luck, The Others (an NBC show about a group of people with different occult sensitivities) that people really enjoyed and watched that didn't get a chance to grow their audience.

March 25 2009 at 4:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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