“Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” Not true, at least in the case of these brilliant TV shows. We all know the pain of falling head-over-heels for a new show, only to realize that you are the only one in the world who understands its true brilliance…before it’s too late. Here is a list of eight of the best shows to be cancelled before their time.
1. Arrested Development
No TV family has ever been so dysfunctional to such comedic effect in the history of television. The Bluths were a successful model home dynasty, until shady government dealings left them bankrupt and their patriarch in jail. Now it’s all up to Michael, the one sane member of the family, to hold them all together. Will Arnette, Jason Bateman and especially Michael Cera pretty much owe their comedic careers to this show. Despite its cancellation, however, there are constant rumors of a film being made. Maybe this year?
It was a space western. The perfect marriage of two radically different genres. Add to that a cast of plucky underdogs, groundbreaking cinematography and the humor and drama Joss Whedon (creator of “Buffy,” “Angel,” and “Dollhouse”) is known for, and you’d think you’d have an instant hit. You’d be wrong. But at least “Firefly” fans got to say “I told you so” when their beloved show was turned into a big damn movie, “Serenity.”
3. Greg the Bunny
Puppets, or “Fabricated Americans” live among us. Some of them are working alongside humans in a children’s show called “Sweet Knuckle Junction.” But instead of charmed lives, they all have problems with substance abuse, ex-wives and failure. Seth Green starred (alongside adorable Greg the bunny) in this ridiculous satire.
Graduating and moving back home can be frustrating. But for Jaye, who works a dead-end job at a Niagara Falls gift shop, it starts to get a little weird when the taxidermied animals in the shop start ordering her to help people in need.
5. Freaks and Geeks
The show followed the Weir siblings, Lindsey and Sam, through their eternal quest to fit in with their chosen social castes. Lindsey went from the star mathlete to an army-jacket-wearing “freak” and Sam, pining for his cheerleader dream girl, has always been a “geek.”
6. Pushing Daisies
Possibly the most adorable love story ever, Pushing Daisies focuses on the Piemaker, who has the unique talent of bringing dead things back to life. But there’s a catch: If he touches something twice, it goes back to being dead. This comes in handy while solving crimes with no-nonsense P.I. Emerson Cod, but things get a bit complicated when he brings his childhood sweetheart back to life, and can never touch her again. Also, Kristin Chenoweth sings.
The battle between good and evil takes place in the Dustbowl in the 1930’s. Humanity’s only hope lies in a traveling carnival and Ben, their new recruit and reluctant hero. Layered with symbolism, a complex mythology, and phenomenal acting, it was hard to believe “Carnivale” wasn’t renewed for a third season.
The classic tale of the Bible’s King David came to life for one brief season last spring. With little-to-no heavy-handed religious themes, viewers were taken into a modern-day interpretation of the story. With some of the most incredible writing television has seen in a long time and superb acting (especially by Ian McShane, or “King Silas”), the hour-long show immersed viewers in a tale of bravery, betrayal, love and power. Alas, we were left full of questions at the season finale.
It almost happened to “30 Rock,” it almost happened to “Dollhouse,” and it could still happen to “Glee.” Please, watch original shows. Don’t let the networks kill off innocent plotlines on a whim.