Santa Clarita Diet
Santa Clarita Diet was a breath of fresh air. This show was absolutely hilarious, but Netflix still canceled it. The streaming service said it was canceled because people didn’t watch it, but other reports claim that the producers asked the star actress, Drew Barrymore, to lose weight. Barrymore refused to lose weight, which could have contributed to it being axed.
We know that people watched the show, but the reason it was canceled is that it wasn't nearly as successful as Netflix hoped. A show has to be a killer before the streaming giant renews it for four or five seasons. Netflix has a long history of giving shows the ax after season one or two.
Pushing Daisies was one of the best shows on TV during the late 2000s. The characters were quirky, and the dialogue was incredibly well written. The cast included Lee Pace and Kristin Chenoweth (both all-stars), so it was pretty dang surprising when it was canceled.
It should tell you a lot that fans are still angry over the show's cancellation when it's been over 10 years since it got the news. The reason it didn't get an additional season is pretty obvious — it didn't have the ratings it needed to continue. Now, it has a cult following that will never stop asking for a third season.
The Good Guys
The Good Guys starred Tom Hanks’s son, Colin Hanks, and Bradley Whitford. It was about a young, straight-laced cop who was paired with an older cop who refused to play by the rules. It was your typical buddy-cop show, but it had so much depth by the end of season one.
Buddy cop shows are a dime-a-dozen, but that doesn't necessarily mean they're all good. Even today, it sits with a solid 8.1 IMDb score and many critics enjoyed it. In the end, people didn't tune in, so they didn't get to see how good the show actually was.
After a single season, Whiskey Cavalier got the ax. It starred some pretty big names, so we’re not sure why it got canceled. It had low ratings, but there was so much effort put into the first season that the second season was going to be a hit. Unfortunately, we’ll never see it.
There was hope for a little while that the show was going to get renewed. Fans managed to get ABC to review its cancelation decision, but ultimately, it stayed canceled. Definitely sad news, but both of the show's stars are very skilled so they'll land on their feet.
Rob Lowe has a hard time with shows. A lot of his best work get canceled, and this was one that deserved more. After one season, Fox canceled The Grinder even though it had the perfect combo of high-brow and low-brow comedy, which is pretty rare.
When you couple that with the chemistry between Lowe and Fred Savage, the removal is even more confusing. The critical acclaim was pretty great, and Rotten Tomatoes put the show at a 93% rating. It was even compared to Arrested Development, Community, and Better Off Ted.
Sense8 was canceled after season two and was saved by Netflix to have a two-hour movie that would wrap up any loose ends. That being said, it was utter bologna that it was even canceled in the first place. It had diverse casting, and fans adored it.
In all honesty, we can see Sense8 turning into another Firefly situation. Fans won't let this one go. The noise got so loud that the Chief Content Officer of Netflix, Ted Sarandos, admitted the show was canceled because it didn't have a large enough audience to support high production costs.
Agent Carter was a blessing, and it was one everyone had been asking for since she first popped up in Captain America. She’s one of the best characters in the Marvel Universe, but her stand-alone show got canceled after two seasons. Why? It was definitely canceled too soon!
The reasoning we've heard is that it's because the show didn't have good enough ratings — you know the story. We're guessing it also has something to do with Disney pulling all of its assets from other networks, streaming and otherwise. We hoped Disney would pick it back up, but it's been a no-go thus far.
Moonlight was such a good show. It just jumped the gun on the whole vampire craze. Soon after the series was canceled, other vampire shows got incredibly popular and ran for several seasons with solid finales. Moonlight could have been just as popular. It combined cop shows with vampires, so it was even better!
It was about a vampire detective who was getting awfully close to a human cop while investigating crimes. Another network should really bring it back. The only problem is that the main guy — Alex O'Loughlin — seems busy with other projects at the moment. Sadly, this one is over for good.
Constantine followed a self-destructive hero that just wanted to keep demons out of people and off the face of the earth. The series had one season, which was pretty good, but it wasn’t brought back thanks to the first eight episodes doing poorly. Regardless, the characters were written very well and had great direction.
Apparently, everyone knew that much, so that's why he started appearing in DC's Legends of Tomorrow. He's also going to pop up in a "DC Showcase," but you know what's an even better showcase? An entire show dedicated to one of the best characters in DC.
Dead Like Me
Dead Like Me was a series from 2003 that lasted two seasons on Showtime. Several fans thought that Showtime jumped the gun when they canceled it due to poor ratings. After its cancelation, a lot of fans canceled their Showtime subscription and went on hiatus. Some didn’t even subscribe again until 2011 when Shameless (U.S.) premiered.
The show had a bumpy start, even without the cancelation. During the first season, Bryan Fuller (the creator of the whole thing) left because of conflicts with MGM. They wanted script rewrites and storyline cuts. Part of us wonders what Bryan Fuller's creation would be like. Are we sensing a reboot?
Feed the Beast
Feed the Beast was a new type of a show…sort of. It followed a character in the restaurant scene, but it was a serious show. It was great to see a restaurant setting that wasn’t a reality show or a comedy. Better yet, it starred Jim Sturgess and David Schwimmer. It looked like it had potential, but it was canceled far too soon.
The fact it was based on another TV show could have hurt it. The original was a Danish drama called "Bankerot." There's been some issues translating a foreign TV show to an American one without major changes — take The Office, for example. Feed the Beast must have had bad ratings for AMC to cancel it. After all, they let The Walking Dead go on far too long.
Deadwood lasted three seasons before it was canceled, and that makes no sense. The show has an incredible 95% Rotten Tomatoes rating and starred people like Timothy Olyphant and Ian McShane. This one fell victim to being ahead of its time. With how popular Westworld is, Deadwood would be a major hit today.
Along with being ahead of its time, it was a victim of corporate fighting. Deadwood was co-produced with HBO (Warner Media) and Paramount. The two companies couldn't figure out how to split the profits, which led to both parties bailing. With no way of funding the show, it got canceled.
Not a lot of people watched Secret Circle, but those that did absolutely adored it. It came out in 2011 during a time when there weren’t many shows about witches, so it was certainly unique. The pilot was received with mixed reviews but by the end? It really showed promise.
The series itself was based on a book series by the same author that did Vampire Dairies, so it could have been a hit. It only lasted one season before it received the ax. We would say it deserved at least two seasons to see what could happen. The best shows have a “you need to get past the first season” warning.
No list would be complete without Jericho. The series was canceled after one season, but fans literally revolted and managed to get it back for a second season. Following the second season, it was canceled yet again, but we don’t understand why. It was a shame, but that wasn’t the end of Jericho.
There was a third and fourth season...of sorts. These two parts came out in the form of a comic book series “from the minds” of the Jericho writing team. It gave fans a little more from the team that knew the show best. It was just a shame we didn’t get a full series out of it, though.
Firefly is another one that fans were upset about. The series was set 500 years after a universal civil war, and it follows a crew that took any job that got them paid. The premise was so incredibly unique that it was probably why it ended up being canceled. Unique plots have a hard time surviving if they don’t get early buzz.
When it premiered, Firefly averaged 4.7 million viewers per episode and earned a Primetime Emmy Award. Eventually, the unaired episodes aired and left more questions up in the air. Later, a movie released that tried to tie up a few loose ends, but a full series would have been a million times better.
The Mysteries of Laura
The Mysteries of Laura starred Debra Messing, an actress we already loved from Will & Grace. Good actress? Check. The story was about Laura Diamond, a brilliant NYPD homicide detective, who strived to find a balance between her day job and personal life. Being a mom, a detective, and a divorcee is pretty tough.
So, a good story? Also, check. Unfortunately, it was still canceled after just three seasons. The problem was that critics hated it, but what do critics know? Audiences love it. While Rotten Tomatoes put it at a 24% critics rating, it has a 78% audience rating. That should tell you all you need to know.
Terriers should be on every list of TV show that was canceled too soon. It follows an ex-cop and his criminal friend as they become private investigators (sans license). It stars Donal Logue and Michael Raymond-James, two truly underrated actors.
Terriers was critically acclaimed. Even today, the show is ranked as one of the best shows of all time. Rotten Tomatoes puts the show at a 92% approval rating, but it still got canceled. Supposedly, it was because of low ratings, but we’re not sold. Fox has a history of canceling great shows for no reason.
HBO generally won’t keep shows that don’t perform as well as they want. They almost passed on Game of Thrones! Even if that show did end badly, it was still great while it lasted, and it earned HBO tons of dough. Enlightened was one of those shows they should have given a chance.
It starred the incredibly Laura Dern as an ambitious corporate exec who had just experienced an intense breakdown. After a three-month retreat, she returns to her life with a new “enlightened” view she desperately wants to keep. It ended up being canceled, but there’s been chatter about reviving the show. Nothing concrete, unfortunately.
Stitchers was a Freeform TV show, so it didn’t really have much of a chance. Had this show premiered on another network, it would still be on. The plot is just a little too dark for Freeform. Why does this network gravitate toward dark premises when it knows it won’t last?
Stitchers followed Kirsten Clark, who had the special ability to stitch together minds of people who had recently died to investigate their memories. Pretty cool idea, right? It was canceled after three seasons. Sadly, we’ll never know about what happens to Kirsten and that huge cliffhanger from the end of the third season.
Better Off Ted
Better Off Ted was like a lot of office dramas, except it wasn’t. The characters were exaggerated to the point that where corporate execs were practically evil, research and development had guys that were scientific geniuses but had the social skills of a child, and then everyone else was stuck in the middle.
The comedy was spot on and received a lot of critical acclaim. Still, it only lasted two seasons. Better Off Ted is what Firefly was to sci-fi – one of the best shows sitcoms will ever see. If it had been given a chance, it could have been bigger than The Office.
The Royals had a lot of competition when The Crown came along. That being said, The Royals was a lot different than The Crown. What really set it apart was that it was really funny, but there was plenty of drama for anyone wanting depth in their show. Think of a sexy soap opera of palace life.
Then, news broke that the show’s creator, Mark Schwahn, was suspended due to sexual harassment allegations (as well as his previous series One Tree Hill). That effectively killed the show. There were talks that the show would be picked up by Pop, but it never really panned out. The Royals were officially dead.
Freaks and Geeks
This list would never be complete without the legendary Freaks and Geeks. It’s almost always the top answer whenever this question is asked. James Franco, Seth Rogan, Busy Phillips, Jason Segel, Linda Cardellini—all people who are known for being incredibly funny and talented today. Most of which are even responsible for our top comedies!
Freaks and Geeks could have been one of the greatest coming-of-age stories out there, but now we’ll never know, will we? Many wonder why it was canceled, and the short answer is creative differences. The network wanted one thing while the actual showrunners and cast wanted something completely different.
Fringe was another sci-fi series that fans adored. Almost anyone who watched it became addicted, but that didn’t save it from being canceled after its fifth season. The series was about an FBI agent, Olivia Dunham, who was assigned to the “Fringe” division. The team was designed to investigate scientific cases that didn’t go as planned, to say the least.
The reason it was canceled was because it was just too expensive to make, and the ratings just weren't there. Viewership had been declining since season three, so Fox moved Fringe to the "death slot." By the name, you can imagine this wasn't good for Fringe. It struggled for a bit, then got the ax.
Critics didn’t really love The Finder, but fans adored it. The series is about a man who was very good at tracking people down, thus “The Finder.” Well, in the series, he teams up with a legal advisor to search for specific people. It doesn’t sound like much, but the actors made it everyone you’d want from a comedy series.
Many people thought that The Finder was designed to replace Bones once that series ended, so why was it killed? Apparently, the execs and showrunner miscalculated. They are quoted as saying that the “Bones audience” was tough to explain. They didn't like The Finder being forced down their throat. Maybe if they had let The Finder live on its own, it would have done well.
Dark Angel starred Jessica Alba before she got super famous (and it certainly put her in the spotlight fast). It lasted a total of two seasons before it was canceled from Fox. It was set in the cyberpunk future and followed a superhuman prototype who wanted to find the other children that grew up like her.
Apparently, it had a significant audience drop between the first and second seasons, but that doesn’t mean it should have been canceled. The writing was pretty good, and the actors were obviously skilled as they went on to bigger projects. If something like this popped up now, everyone would have their eyes on it.
About a Boy
About a Boy was directed by Jon Favreau—the same guy who did Iron Man, Avengers, and the newest Lion King movie. Basically, it should have been a hit. It was about a guy who begins to get close to his neighbors, a boy and his mother. At first, he tried to resist the relationship, but he realized there was no point.
About a Boy could have been a contender. Honestly, it comes as no surprise. NBC has been trimming its episodes season after season, which hurt the show more than an initial cancellation might. At least if it didn’t have season after season of declining views, it might have been purchased by another network.
Trophy Wife started off on the wrong foot because it had a horrible title. It follows a former party girl who settles down with the man of her dreams, who is also older and richer. Naturally, he was married before, and his two exes are still in the picture, making her the new “trophy wife.” Critics and fans loved the show, so what’s the deal?
It wasn't hard to see where Trophy Wife's fate was headed, especially since ABC has a pattern. They debut great sitcoms that don't pull a huge audience initially. Then, they cancel it before it's moved or canceled altogether. This one got a single season before it was canceled, and that’s a crying shame.
Almost Human starred the incredibly good-looking – oh, and immensely talented – Karl Urban. He’s been known to hold the attention of fans through various TV shows and movies. While critics were less than enthused about the series, fans adored it. It followed a futuristic cop who just woke up from a 17-month coma following an attack on the police department.
When he returns, he has to work with a robot and overcome his hatred of androids. Honestly, this could have made a great movie, too. The showrunner was the same one who did Fringe, and the music? The music was by none other than J.J. Abrams. It won an Emmy, but it still got canceled because of “low ratings.” Um…okay?
The Adventures of Brisco County Jr.
Okay, so this one is an oldie, but it’s still a goodie. It says a lot that it was canceled in 1994, and fans are still bringing it up as a show that was “canceled too soon.” The show was about a guy named Bisco County. Bisco was a Harvard-educated lawyer who decided law wasn’t for him.
Instead, he wanted to be a bounty hunter. Set in 1893, it had a comedy, sci-fi, and western vibe all tied into one. Pretty much everyone loved it, but it was canceled after just one season. Since it was canceled too soon, we’re going to say that it is most certainly worth a reboot if anything.
Lone Star is one of the saddest on the list because it was canceled mid-season. That’s something we’ll never understand. If a show is filmed and already set to finish, just let it go through with the season! It aired six episodes, and the network felt like it didn’t get enough viewers.
Despite widespread critical appraisal, Lone Star was canceled with four episodes unaired. Someone should tell Fox that shows need more than two episodes. Heck, some shows don’t even get good until the second season! After canceled, Lie to Me took the show slot, and fans were left wanting.
Party Down had some really great comedians. It starred Adam Scott, Lizzy Caplan, Ken Marino, and Martin Starr as characters who wanted to make it in Hollywood as actors. In the meantime, they worked as caterers. None of them were particularly mature, so there were tons of great moments for the short two seasons that aired.
It wasn’t the most revolutionary show out there, but it had some good laughs. Sometimes, that’s all a show needs to stay alive. We’re not going to blame the network on this one, because the fact is: it didn’t get enough people to watch. It just didn’t get enough of an audience, but it really deserved more.
Profit is an older TV show from 1996, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth taking a good look at. It was a drama/thriller that aired on Fox and created an intense industry buzz. It was about a junior executive who was scheming his way to the top of the corporate ladder.
Many considered the series to be the precursor to melodramas that would dominate TV in the early 2000s. Regardless of the praise, the show was canceled after eight episodes. If something is a precursor of shows that are dominating television today, then it should have gotten more than one season.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Okay, hold up. You mean to tell me that a Terminator television show didn’t do well? Are you serious? Terminator was a pretty colossal film, so it was redesigned into a TV series in 2008. It didn’t get fantastic ratings, but there were tons of die-hard fans that adored Sarah Connor.
It had some great stars, including Lena Headey who basically dominated Game of Thrones as one of the most talked-about characters of the series. After looking at the cast and crew, the fact it was nominated for four Emmy Awards may not be a shocker. After two seasons, it was canceled by Fox.
Threshold premiered in 2005 and lasted a single season before it got officially canceled by CBS. Sci-fi is just hard to keep on TV. It was about a team of experts who were assembled the U.S. Navy to investigate an unidentified craft that landed in the Atlantic Ocean. Sounds like a winner.
While the actors weren’t super famous back in the day, several of them went on to star in critically acclaimed series – Carla Gugino, Robert Benedict, and Peter Dinklage just to name a few. Overall, this makes us think it was canceled too soon. Maybe it deserves another shot today.
Witches of East End
We’re huge fans of witch shows, can’t you tell? Witches of East End was another supernatural show that could have been something, but it wasn’t given enough time to lift off the ground. The series followed a family of witches that lived in the seaside town of East Haven.
It brought back major Charmed vibes, so fans were pretty upset when it was canceled (especially since it ended with colossal cliffhangers). Fans tried to get it revived through a petition, which gained a lot of attention on Twitter. It even got some attention from celebrities like Channing Tatum and William Shatner. It wasn't enough, unfortunately.
Don’t Trust the B* in Apt 23
Don’t trust the B* in Apt 23 had an eye-catching name, so we assumed it would last more than two seasons. Something about curse words in titles garners extra attention. The show itself was about a woman who moved to Manhattan for her dream job only to find out that the company went bust.
Thankfully, she finds a job working at a coffee shop with a roommate that’s less than ideal. When Don’t Trust the B* was in risk of being canceled, ABC bumped it from the schedule to another time slot, but that was a lie. It was the death knell. At least ABC gave it a few extra episodes to conclude.
Bunheads doesn’t seem like one of those shows you’d adore but trust us when we say it’s fantastic. The show was pretty quirky, funny, and heartfelt. It displayed ballet in a positive, realistic light, which was kinda rare. One of the best parts of the show was how someone’s actions could significantly impact another’s, whether good or bad.
It lasted a single season before it was canceled. Bunheads deserved better. Everyone started a riot over it from Buzzfeed to Reddit – that’s a pretty wide fanbase. We gotta agree with them. The show even won several awards and was nominated for a Teen Choice Award.
We have a weakness for buddy-cop shows, okay? Battle Creek starred Josh Duhamel and Dean Winters as two law enforcement officers. One of them was strait-laced while the other was barely put together. They worked to clean up the streets, but it all ended after 13 episodes. We want more.
Why? Well, Josh Duhamel and Dean Winters had fantastic chemistry. They’re both great actors, which already sets it apart from some of the other boring cop dramas that are out there. CBS said it “never caught on” with audiences, but the audience has been quite verbal about the cancellation. Are you sure about that, CBS?
We get that this one may seem a little controversial. Scream Queens was unlike any TV show that’s ever aired. It was a comedy horror show that poked fun at everything that makes the horror industry what it is today. The characters were airheads, but the comedy was done so well that you were glued to the screen.
The story follows a group of sorority girls who are battling it out with each other and a masked killer that was taking them out one by one. We will admit that season two wasn’t as strong as the first, but Scream Queens just needed some footing to find where it belonged. Our suggestion? Pick a horror movie and make fun of it. The Scary Movie franchise did well for a reason.
Wonderfalls was a comedy series that premiered in 2004. It was about a Niagara Falls souvenir shop employee who realizes something is up when animal figurines begin talking to her. They send cryptic messages that lead her into the lives of others. The show lasted a total of six episodes.
Wonderfalls had it all when it was on TV...well, except viewers. If the show had just a few more (thousand) people tuning in, we all would have seen what the show could do. Thankfully, fans were given 13 extra hours of content through a DVD release. That’s better than nothing, right?
The movie was a hit, so why wasn’t the TV show? Granted, Bradley Cooper wasn’t really in it, but that doesn’t mean the show wasn’t fantastic. The show focused on a guy that quickly got hooked on NZT-48 and helped the police solve crimes involving this mysterious drug. In the meantime, he had to keep getting NZT.
That wasn’t an easy task, but apparently, it didn’t matter. The show was canceled because (in CBS’s words), “it failed to connect with audiences.” The show was offered to Netflix and Amazon, both of which denied the offer to continue it for a second season. That’s a missed opportunity if you ask us. Limitless was literally Psych on drugs.
Daredevil’s cancelation definitely came out of left field. The show was absolutely huge with a large, very avid fanbase. The problem? All Marvel properties that weren’t currently on Disney were getting the ax. Daredevil certainly lasted longer than others, but everyone thought, “there’s no way they’d cut this show!”
Sadly, the time came when Disney pulled its content completely. Recently, there’s been talk of restarting the series on Disney, but we can’t say it’s not a reboot. Charlie Cox hasn’t been confirmed, although he did show up momentarily in the most recent Spiderman movie. That’s definitely hope.
Andrea Savage is a creative genius and can tell mad jokes. One scene from I’m Sorry was all it took for most people to be hooked. The concept was pretty…well, ordinary. It was about a single-child family as they stumble their way through life while raising their little girl. The genius part comes in with the jokes.
This sitcom will have you laughing pretty much all the way through it. Everyone loved it, and the show was set to continue for another season. Then, COVID happened. The show was fully written and even had a few episodes aired before the plug was pulled. Canceled – another great TV show down.
Lethal Weapon was a fantastic movie and the series? Let’s just say Clayne Crawford as Martin Riggs gave Mel Gibson a run for his money. The show was engaging and left you on the edge of your seat, but it wasn’t meant to be. Drama started on set, and that led to the downfall of another fantastic show.
The two main stars got in a major fight, which led to the cast and crew getting split. Naturally, since Damon Wayans was a bigger name, they kept him and axed Clayne Crawford. Big mistake – huge. The show tanked almost immediately. Why keep the guy that refused to actually film and didn’t want to do any action scenes…in an action show?
Punisher should have gone on much longer than it did, but it was another that suffered the fate of Marvel’s acquisition by Disney. Jon Bernthal embodied Frank Castle in such a great way without seeming too over the top. That doesn’t even touch Ben Barnes's performance that blew everyone away.
Sadly, unlike Daredevil, there’s no hope for this one coming back any time soon. The show was pretty much abandoned following the cancellation from Netflix. Maybe fans can create enough noise to make it come back, but as of now, Disney has seemed to abandon the whole Punisher show.
American Vandal was absolutely fantastic, but Netflix doesn’t like it when shows even slightly falter. The show had a great early start, but interest tapered off. Deadline reported that the show’s sophomore season didn’t get the same strong response as the first. If it were on any other network, it may have made it.
Netflix? Nah, they canceled it. Netflix is known to cancel great shows just because it didn’t get the reception they originally wanted. That doesn’t even mean poor audience sometimes. Heck, American Vandal even won an Emmy! How much better can a show get? Regardless, it got the ax.
For a while, anything anyone could talk about was Hannibal. Everyone loved it – well, except for critics. As the episodes continued, people stuck with it, but we got cut short after just 39 episodes. It got more seasons than many of the others on this list, but that doesn’t change the fact that it deserved many, many more.
It was definitely a slow-burner, and that’s why it was affected. Maybe it suffered from the fact the world hasn’t begun the same binge culture it has today. The ratings didn’t get much better as time passed, and NBC made the decision to pull the plug. The creator has teased a possible revival, but fans are left empty-handed.
Honestly, we’re still a little flabbergasted from this cancelation. We’re aware that the show was picked up by NBC, but Fox’s cancellation was so unwarranted that it had to be put on this list. Just when Brooklyn Nine-Nine was at the top of its game, it got canceled for Bob’s Burgers?! A show that was already insanely popular?
Literally, a day after Fox canceled it, Peacock and NBC swooped in and picked it up for an additional 13 episodes (which turned into more). It was a moneymaker. Sadly, the show is officially concluding after season eight. Fox’s move was just so egregious that it deserved to be put on this list as the biggest mistake ever.
American Gods was almost screwed from the start. The content was great and that much was clear by the first season. Then, it was hit with a slew of problems with on-set drama, production delays, and the ever-inflating budget. We also can’t forget the last-minute rewrites that put a wrench in the whole ordeal.
Anyone could tell you that this can kill a show. Each one of those issues was basically a nail in the coffin until it was effectively shut forever. When American Gods got canceled, it came as a blow to fans, but fewer and fewer people tuned in to watch the newer episodes, anyway.
Altered Carbon had a unique premise that answered the question: What if you could live forever? We put this show on the list, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we think it would have done well in the current state. There was hope, and we’ll tell you why. First off, the casting wasn’t that bad.
People blamed Anthony Mackie for the show getting canceled, but he’s carrying on his own show at Disney – Disney wouldn’t hire bad actors. The real root of the problem was writing and a massive cut in the budget. You just can’t make a cyberpunk show on pennies. The “ending” left everyone wanting, but it is what it is.