a man called hawk
Other shows on the list are good examples of bad spin-offs too, including The Ropers, the Three's Company spin-off that was rather unnecessary; Joey, the Friends spin-off that just couldn't recapture the magic of the parent series; and Baywatch Nights, which always amazed me with the fact that Mitch Buchannon never mentioned to the other lifeguards at his day job on the beach that he was fighting monsters and evil spirits in his night job.
I'm impressed that they not only picked the Spenser: For Hire spin-off A Man Called Hawk but placed it so high on the list, at number three. That really was a disappointing show. Some characters are just more effective in supporting roles.
Back in January I gave my list of Great Shows, Bad Characters. And now it's time to reverse that and name five great characters trapped in bad TV shows.
1. Hawk (A Man Called Hawk): Not only is Hawk (from Spenser: For Hire) one of the great characters of 80s television, he's one of the great characters of television history. And Avery Brooks...what a perfect actor for the role. No one else could have played Robert B. Parker's character like Brooks (see the later Spenser flicks for proof of that). But then they gave him his own show, moving him to D.C., and he started playing the piano and getting all mushy. Eh. Great character, bad show.