Entertainment

The Best Single Season Canceled Shows  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
114.8k votes 11.2k voters 300.7k views 207 items

List Rules Top TV series canceled after one season

What are the best single season canceled shows in television history? These shows were actually really great, but for whatever reason (usually ratings), they got the ax after just a handful of episodes. Without a doubt, many on this list of series canceled after one season deserved much longer runs and all these TV shows were canceled before their time. Vote for the shows you think didn't deserve just one season on the air and feel free to rerank this list your way, too.

It might surprise you to learn that despite their great successes, entertainment heavyweights like Judd Apatow and Joss Whedon didn't always come out on top. Whedon's Firefly remains one of the most unjust cancellations in TV history, as does Apatow's Freaks and Geeks (both are now among the all-time top cult TV shows). But this list also includes some more obscure shows.

Add any one season TV shows that might be missing because if *you* miss it, it qualifies. What single-season TV shows do you believe are the greatest ever? It's a safe bet that several of the 1 season TV shows listed here are also among the best TV shows in recent memory.

list ordered by
1
Firefly is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk
Firefly is an American space western science fiction drama television series created by writer and director Joss Whedon, under his Mutant Enemy Productions label. Whedon served as an executive ...more
2
Freaks and Geeks is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Linda Cardellini, John Francis Daley, James Franco
Freaks and Geeks is an American teen comedy-drama television series, created by Paul Feig with Judd Apatow as executive producer, that aired on NBC during the 1999–2000 television season. ...more
3
Almost Human is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
AvilisSiliva added Karl Urban, Michael Ealy, Minka Kelly
Almost Human is an American science fiction drama that aired from November 17, 2013, through March 3, 2014, on Fox. The series was created by J. H. Wyman for Frequency Films, Bad Robot ...more
4
Forever is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
fastnotbulbous added Ioan Gruffudd, Alana De La Garza, Joel David Moore
Forever is an American drama television series about Dr. Henry Morgan, an immortal medical examiner in New York City. The series aired on ABC as part of the 2014–15 fall television season. The ...more
5
The Finder is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
ShaunaTurner added Geoff Stults, Maddie Hasson, Mercedes Mason
The Finder is an American procedural drama television series created by Hart Hanson that ran on Fox from January 12, 2012 to May 11, 2012. The series originally aired on Thursdays at 9:00 pm, ...more
6
Terra Nova is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Jason O'Mara, Shelley Conn, Christine Adams
Terra Nova is an American science fiction drama television series. It premiered on September 26, 2011 with a two-hour premiere, and concluded on December 19, 2011 with a two-hour, two-episode ...more
7
My So-Called Life is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Bess Armstrong, Wilson Cruz, Claire Danes
My So-Called Life is an American teen drama television series created by Winnie Holzman and produced by Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz. It originally aired on ABC from August 25, 1994, to ...more
8
Kolchak: The Night Stalker is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
bojanthebest added Darren McGavin, Simon Oakland, Jack Grinnage
Kolchak: The Night Stalker is an American television series that aired on ABC during the 1974–1975 season. It featured a fictional Chicago newspaper reporter—Carl Kolchak, played by Darren ...more
9
Tru Calling is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
AnneMorais added Eliza Dushku, Shawn Reaves, Zach Galifianakis
Tru Calling is an American television supernatural drama series that aired on Fox. Original episodes aired between October 30, 2003, and March 11, 2005, however the final episode was shown in ...more
10
Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
DonLathrop added Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict, Lorne Greene
Battlestar Galactica is an American science fiction television series, created by Glen A. Larson, that began the Battlestar Galactica franchise. Starring Lorne Greene, Richard Hatch and Dirk ...more
11
The Secret Circle is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
MelissaKilderry added Britt Robertson, Thomas Dekker, Phoebe Tonkin
The Secret Circle is an American supernatural teen drama that aired on The CW from September 15, 2011, to May 10, 2012. It is based on the book series of the same name written by L. J. Smith. ...more
12
Constantine is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
JuanGabrielGomezAlvarado added Matt Ryan, Harold Perrineau, Charles Halford
Constantine (NBC, 2014) is an American television series developed by Daniel Cerone and David S. Goyer for NBC, featuring the DC Comics character John Constantine. Matt Ryan stars as ...more
13
Undeclared is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Jay Baruchel, Carla Gallo, Charlie Hunnam
Undeclared is an American sitcom that aired on Fox during the 2001–02 season. The show has developed a cult following. In 2012, Entertainment Weekly listed the show at #16 in the "25 Best ...more
14
Limitless is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
LanaYoshii added Jake McDorman, Jennifer Carpenter, Hill Harper
Limitless (CBS, 2015) is an American comedy-drama television series developed by Craig Sweeny, based on the 2011 film. Brian Finch (Jake McDorman), a 28-year-old burnout and struggling musician, ...more
15
FlashForward is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
ChangesDownClub added John Cho, Joseph Fiennes, Jack Davenport
FlashForward is a U.S. television series, adapted for television by Brannon Braga and David S. Goyer, which aired for one season on ABC between September 24, 2009, and May 27, 2010. It is based ...more
16
The Tomorrow People is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
MarkandLetyKing added Robbie Amell, Peyton List, Luke Mitchell
The Tomorrow People is an American science fiction television series developed by Greg Berlanti, Phil Klemmer, and Julie Plec that aired on The CW during the 2013–14 American television season. ...more
17
The Black Donnellys is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
redrunner911 added Jonathan Tucker, Tom Guiry, Olivia Wilde
The Black Donnellys is an American television drama that debuted on NBC on February 26, 2007, and last aired on April 2, 2007. Thereafter, NBC began releasing new episodes weekly on NBC.com ...more
18
The Dresden Files is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Paul Blackthorne, Valerie Cruz, Terrence Mann
The Dresden Files is a Canadian/American television series based on the fantasy book series of the same name by Jim Butcher. It premiered January 21, 2007 on the Sci Fi Channel in the United ...more
19
The Tick is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
DonLathrop added Patrick Warburton, David Burke, Liz Vassey
The Tick is an American sitcom based on the character Tick from the comic book of the same name. It aired on Fox in late 2001 and was produced by Columbia TriStar Television. With a pilot airing ...more
20
Awake is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Jason Isaacs, Laura Allen, Steve Harris
Awake is an American television police procedural fantasy drama that originally aired on NBC for one season from March 1 to May 24, 2012. The pilot episode had an early release on Hulu on ...more
21
Alien Nation is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
Umberhaven added Gary Graham, Eric Pierpoint, Michele Scarabelli
Alien Nation is a science fiction television series in the Alien Nation franchise. Adapted from the 1988 movie of the same name, it stars Gary Graham as Detective Matthew Sikes, a Los Angeles ...more
22
The Adventures of Briscoe Coun... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
23
No Ordinary Family is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
KarynLake added Michael Chiklis, Julie Benz, Kay Panabaker
No Ordinary Family is an American television series that aired on ABC and CTV in Canada. The one-hour science fiction comedy-drama was produced by ABC Studios for the 2010–11 television season. ...more
24
Dracula is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
MarkandLetyKing added Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Jessica De Gouw, Thomas Kretschmann
Dracula is a British-American horror drama television series that premiered on NBC on October 25, 2013. It was produced by London-based Carnival Films. The series was created by Cole Haddon, and ...more
25
Life on Mars is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Single Season Canceled Shows
SpencerVerMeer added Jason O'Mara, Harvey Keitel, Jonathan Murphy
Life on Mars is a science fiction drama television series which originally aired on ABC from October 9, 2008 to April 1, 2009. It is an adaptation of the BAFTA-winning original UK series of the ...more