The Top Ten Cancelled TV Shows

The best television has to offer is often slain prematurely due to overreaction by networks and the lazy minds of the average viewer.

Here are the top ten best of the briefest -- those stars that brightened our nights for only two seasons or fewer.

10. "Wonderland" (ABC)
Premiered: March 2000
Cancelled: April 2000

Fantastically compelling drama taking place in a mental institution. Two episodes aired before ABC caved to the absurdly uptight who protested the realistic portrayal of the mentally ill.

9. "Sports Night" (ABC) - Rent it - Buy it
Premiered: September 1998
Cancelled: May 2000

"Sports Night" may very well have failed because no one knew what it was. It wasn't a show about sports at all. It was a show about a show about sports. It was a behind-the-scenes look at the production of a fictional "Sportscenter" type show. Fantastic dialog and writing was often wasted by the often hidden or missing comedy/drama on the ABC schedule.

8. "Wonderfalls" (FOX) - Rent it - Buy it
Premiered: August 1994
Cancelled: January 1995

Much too creative, quirky, intelligent and fun to survive in a world where "Everybody Loves Raymond" tops the charts.

7. "Six Degrees" (ABC) - Watch it
Premiered: September 2006
Cancelled: April 2007

Crisp storytelling revolving around the lives of six loosely-related characters who find direct and indirect ways of touching each others lives in New York City. Six people, six stories, each with just the right amount of mystery, intrigue and charm.

6. "Push, Nevada" (ABC)
Premiered: August 1994
Cancelled: January 1995

Innovative and unusual; a thinking-persons drama with dynamic characters and addictive storyline, and a real life prize for the person to solve the ultimate mystery. Yet another premature reaction by ABC, which has killed more quality television than any other network.

5. "My So-Called Life" (ABC) - Rent it - Buy it
Premiered: August 1994
Cancelled: January 1995

The ultimate in "cancelled before its time" TV shows. Claire Danes as a 15 year old angst-filled teenager going through the paces of high school, established a connection with women old and young and led to the most fervent cult following in TV history.

5. "Brooklyn South" (CBS) - Rent it - Buy it
Premiered: September 1997
Cancelled: April 1998

This was an intense, gritty, police drama that had "hit" written all over it. The pilot was the most gripping introduction to a tv series in the history of cop drama.

3. "Over There" (F/X) - Rent it - Buy It
Premiered: July 2005
Cancelled: September 2005

OK, it's clear the networks hate Bocho and do not limit their poor judgement to the main networks only. "Over There" on F/X provided a realistic view of modern-day war, focusing on the daily struggles of everyday soldiers
. It featured a very strong cast of unique and diverse characters and thoughtful storylines.

2. "The Black Donnellys" (NBC) - Watch it
Premiered: May 2007
Cancelled: April 2007

NBC joins the party of incredibly short-sighted programming decisions. "The Black Donnellys" was the most ambitious and unique series to hit broadcast television in years. Well-acted, well-written, and remarkably entertaining dialogue filled this tale of four brothers and their struggle to stay on top of a New York City neighborhood turf war.

1. "Firefly" (FOX) - Rent it - Buy it
Premiered: September 2002
Cancelled: December 2002

The show I miss the most of any which were shot down prematurely. A western set in outer space, 400 years in the future, with deep, complex characters, dynamic storylines, and a realistic approach to science fiction (no sound in space, no wacky alien life forms, or crazy gadgets and gizmos). Buried deep on no-man's land (Friday Night Television) and released in a confusing manner (the pilot was aired last), Firefly never really had a shot to show its greatness. There has never been a finer TV series and after the way it was treated, there may never be anything close again.


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