Yep, we’re back with another installment of “Brilliant, But Cancelled”. Because if there’s something that TV likes to do it’s make sure that good shows don’t get the fair shake they deserve and letting crap go on for ages. So, without further ado let us take a look back at a handful of these shows and remember them. Otherwise they might as well be relics lost to time.
-Clerks: The Animated Series-
While Kevin Smith’s offerings have been pretty hit and miss for the past few years (I enjoyed Red State, tolerated Tusk, and have no idea what to think of Yoga Hosers at the moment), but this entry in the “View Askewniverse” is a fun one. Teaming up with former Seinfeld writer and future Veep showrunner David Mandel we got a mere six episodes of an entertaining if ridiculous show. If was nice to see Dante and Randal (being voiced by their respective live action actors) return for more antics at Quickstop and RST Video. And to this day there are still some hilarious lines that get stuck in my head. “The weed of crime bears bitter fruit you old hag!” or “An all painter threeway, man” Add onto that the fact that Alec Baldwin voiced the series villain Leonardo Leonard and you’ll get hooked re-watching this series over and over. (Available on DVD)
This show was a bit of an odd creature that debuted on NBC in 1991. It wasn’t until it got re-aired on The Disney Channel a few years later that I caught it. For me there was something ingenious about the show’s concept. After his family moves to the town of Eerie, Marshall becomes friends with Simon and together the pair begin to investigate the strange events that transpire within the town. Geared to be almost like a Twilight Zone/Twin Peaks for young adults it was a hit with critics, but even with help of director Joe Dante (who was a creative consultant) the show didn’t gain a fanbase until after it was cancelled. In 1998 a spin-off series Eerie, Indiana: The Other Dimension aired with mixed results and was also cancelled after a single season. (Available on DVD)
What kind of a list would this be if I didn’t include something that aired on FOX. Yes, another series that the station was willing to greenlight and promote, but didn’t want to stand behind when it’s rating slipped. A Sci-Fi-esque drama that starred Dominic Purcell in the title role, the series revolved around a man who wakes up on an island with no memory of who he is or where he came from. On the plus side he now knows everything humanly possible. Using his newfound knowledge he sets out to discover who he is and in the process help a local cop and friend solve cases. As the series goes on we get drawn into a conspiracy surrounding who John Doe is and what his significance to humanity may be. After the series was cancelled the show’s creator Brandon Camp revealed the mystery behind John Doe and while interesting it might leave something to be desired for a few fans. (Available to watch on Hulu)
-Garfunkel and Oates-
This show getting cancelled still stings a bit. Based loosely off the real life adventures of musical duo Garfunkel and Oates (Riki Lindhome and Kate Micucci) this series was described to me as a female version of Flight of the Conchords. Aside from having a pair of musicians as stars and musical numbers in episodes the shows have no real connection. What makes this show work so well for me is the chemistry between Lindhome and Micucci. Since they’ve been friends for ages they’ve got excellent comedic timing and it makes the show unbelievably funny. The best part is neither woman is afraid to let their personal lives influence the series. There are is one episode where Riki decides to freeze her eggs and another where Kate is told she suffers from Peter Pan Syndrome. Not exactly the lightest plotlines to introduce. With only eight episodes you can binge the series quickly, but you’ll enjoy it. (Available on Netflix Instant)
So there you have it. Another list of shows that had a very short, but sweet run. The sad thing is that over the coming years I’m sure more shows will get cancelled after a single season leading many more lists like this. Until then, what are your thoughts? Did you like any of these shows? Will you watch any of them after reading this article?