As hundreds of television shows premiere every year, it’s obvious many of them will fail – even the good ones. We’ve all felt the pain of our favorite underdog show being ripped away from us before we get closure about the time traveling ghost dog, or college kids who solve mysteries (or whatever). Fear not fellow viewers, we’ve tracked down the hard answers to why popular shows get canceled and laid them out here for you. Now rip off that band-aid and read about why your favorite show got canceled.
The only people who know why shows get canceled are the executives who end up pulling the plug on the program. Most viewers believe that low ratings is the only way for a show to disappear, but there are plenty of reasons why shows get canceled, and we’ve got plenty of them here. Some shows had concepts that were too complicated, while others weren’t “on brand.” And that’s just scratching the surface of why your favorite show was taken off the air.
After you finish reading about why your favorite shows were canceled, take to the comments and tell us what you think would have saved the show.
It's an understatement to say that people loved Arrested Development. Loved it. But after three seasons the show was canceled for having very low ratings. Series creator Mitch Hurwitz had offers to take the series to Showtime, but he declined, feeling that the show had run its course.
If you're wondering how the actors felt about the cancellation, why not let David Cross tell you?
- Photo: Freaks and Geeks / NBC
Freaks and Geeks was in the first class of cult tv shows of the modern era to spawn a massive audience, and launched the careers of pretty much everyone involved. Garth Ancier, the exec who cancelled the beloved show, is still defending his decision.After Seth Rogen called him out at a taping of SNL (and then tweeted about it) Ancier said, "I thought we had a very nice chat about Freaks and Geeks on Saturday night. As I said, my only note to Judd Apatow over the entire series was that either the Freaks and/or the Geeks should win the occasional victory over the cooler kids — especially since Judd Apatow has taken that note in every hit movie since." Burn.
- Photo: TogethernessIf you didn't watch Togetheness (which you probably didn't), it was a series from mumblecore daddies Jay and Mark Duplass about couples having feelings. It was pretty good, but was canceled by HBO for not having great numbers or the cultural impact of that other HBO show about feelings, Ballers Girls.
- Pushing Daisies was one of many shows affected by the dreaded writer's strike of 2007/2008. Because of the lack of scripts, the first season only had 9 episodes, and the second season went mostly unwatched. Despite the show receiving 17 Emmy nominations(!), it was unceremoniously dumped by ABC.