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September 4, 2015

The Twelve Days of Festivus: Five cancelled shows

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 19th 2009 10:00AM
Guiding LightOn the fifth day of Christmas, TV gave to me ... five cancelled shows ...

Every new season, a network will cancel a show (at least) that a ton of people like. Of course, every year the networks cancel shows that nobody likes. The five shows on this list include a little of both. Feel free to list other shows in the comments, but these are the five that stood out to me in 2009.

1. Guiding Light. I had to put Guiding Light at number one. You can't put the cancellation of a show that was on every weekday for 72 years at number three or number five. It just wouldn't be right, even if the show did limp to its end. The longest-running soap opera (and one of the longest-running shows on TV, period) started on radio in 1937 and switched to television in 1952 (it was actually on both radio and TV for a while). The last episode aired in September.

Southland2. Southland. This is the cancelled show that was saved by Twitter ... maybe. NBC ticked off fans when they cancelled the gritty cop drama even before any of the new episodes for the season aired. Then the fans took to Twitter. While it wasn't just that bit of dedicated fan fervor that got TNT to buy the show from NBC, it certainly helped. TNT will show all of the episodes that were already in the can, and if the ratings for those episodes show some spark, you might see even more go into production.

Southland fans, you better get on Twitter again when the show comes back on January 12.

Dollhouse3. Dollhouse. Let's be honest here. Everyone in the galaxy knew that this show wasn't going to last very long. And let's be honest about this too: Dollhouse fans are lucky Fox even gave it another season. But now it's gone, and it's another example that Fox-haters can use in the future when they want to say how bad Fox is and that it sucks when they "don't even give shows a chance before they cancel them!"

But it's OK. Creator Joss Whedon will be back with something else soon enough. And Fox will probably air it.

The Beautiful Life4. The Beautiful Life. Does anyone even remember this disaster? It was produced by Ashton Kutcher (who had more luck on Twitter this year than with this show) and aired on The CW for about seven minutes. It will be added to the answer of the classic trivia question, "What TV shows only lasted two episodes?"

I think it had something to do with a model.

Hank5. Hank. It's not that Hank was some embarrassing, unfunny failure ... well, actually, maybe it was. It starred Kelsey Grammer, but he was stuck in a show that not only didn't have any laughs, it didn't have any personality either. It was just ... there, taking up space on ABC's lineup. I don't know what type of show Grammer will do next, but I hope it's something that will erase people's memories of this show. If people remember it at all.

Twelve shows a stinkin'
Eleven babes worth watchin'
Ten shows on DVD
Nine on-air breakdowns
Eight stars a'shinin'
Seven shows a'thrivin'
Six shows you should be watchin'

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You cant forget "The Continuing Story of Another World!!!!" Gone, but never Forgotten.
"We do not live in this world alone........but a thousand other Worlds"

February 15 2010 at 9:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I watched Guiding Light for over 50 years and was very upset and disappointed that you cancelled it. It seems to me that if a soap ran for 75 years that many people watched and wanted this series to continue.

February 03 2010 at 12:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

(I know it was canceled in 2009...but still hurts.)

I would definitely add The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Life & Pushing Daisies to the list.

I loved Guiding Light. But it limped off the air. By the the last episode, I was glad to see it go! Something to be said about leaving on a high note.

December 20 2009 at 7:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Why is anyone commenting on ER? It was over, lasted a season longer than planned and had more than a good run. And Southland's been given a chance of a reprieve on TNT.

IMHO "Pushing Daisies", "Life" and "Life on Mars" are shows far more worthy of this list and anyone's time and attention.

December 20 2009 at 4:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

@alk02g: "wait... ER didn't make the list?"

ER ended with the 15th season ('08-'09) and last aired in April of this year, before the *current* US broadcast season - which is the topic of the posting.

December 20 2009 at 1:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sir Yuck-Yuck

missing, another daytime stalwart
As The World Turns 54 years
but it goes off the air next year
so this is a honourable mention

December 19 2009 at 7:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

apparently The Beautiful Life is going to continue on YouTube. saw it on Google News. i liked the 2 eps they showed of it.

also I'm going to miss Dollhouse. it's been pretty kick ass these last 3 weeks

December 19 2009 at 2:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I've made peace with Dollhouse getting canceled especially considering the now 7 or so AMAZING episodes that have aired this past season. I'm glad FOX gave the show a second season or else we wouldn't have those fantastic episodes.

December 19 2009 at 12:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

wait... ER didn't make the list? I understand that 2, 3, 4, and 5 were all short-lived, but Guiding Light certainly wasn't, so ER totally could have placed...

December 19 2009 at 10:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to alk02g's comment

Isn't there a difference between ended and cancelled? They promoted the 2008 - 2009 as the last season, all season long so it's not like it was a shock to the fans for an abrupt cancellation like the others on the list (except Hank, who really watched that show?)

December 19 2009 at 11:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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