Sitcoms That Left as Quickly as They Came
Sitcoms are always there whenever you need a quick laugh. From Cheers to Friends, everyone has their favorite. With so many sitcoms out there, however, many are unable to find success. Whether outside factors ruined their chances of finding an audience or they simply weren’t funny, these are the sitcoms that didn’t make it.
When GEICO introduced the GEICO Cavemen in 2004, the company didn't think it would lead to a sitcom. It was writer Joe Lawson, the creator of the advertisements, who pitched the show to ABC. The network approved, and the series aired as part of their 2007 fall schedule.
Writers Jon Lucas and Scott Moore found themselves in a bidding war for their hot new series, Mixology. The show dealt with romantic affairs at a Manhattan bar called Mix. When the smoke cleared, ABC won the rights to the series.
As a spoof of police shows, Police Squad! nailed it with clever writing and the acting expertise of Leslie Nielsen. The show was a hit with critics and earned universal acclaim across the board. Unfortunately, poor ratings forced ABC to drop the show after six episodes.
Freaks and Geeks
NBC's Freaks and Geeks became a surprise hit with young adults after its 1999 debut. Unfortunately, the viewership was still poor compared to NBC shows like Friends and Frasier. After 12 episodes, the network canceled the show. Eighteen episodes were shot, and fans clamored to see the remaining episodes. They landed on Fox Family Channel.
Judd Apatow's work on Freaks and Geeks gave him the idea for Undeclared. The Fox sitcom dealt with college freshmen attending the University of Northeastern California. Freaks and Geeks stars Jason Segel, Seth Rogen and Busy Philipps returned to star in the new series.
That '80s Show
Following the success of That '70s Show, Fox wanted to dive into another decade, the ‘80s. Most of the writers and staff from That '70s Show were on board for the new series.
After Friends ended, NBC decided to continue the story of Joey Tribbiani. Titled simply Joey, the show followed Tribbiani in his quest to become a beloved actor in Hollywood. Aside from Matt LeBlanc, Robert Costanzo reprised his Friends role as Tribbiani's father.
Don't Trust the B---- In Apartment 23
After Fox passed on Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23, ABC picked it up. The show followed June Colburn and her journey through NYC with her fraudster party girl roommate Chloe. With Dreama Walker, Krysten Ritter and James Van Der Beek as the leads, the show seemed destined to be a midseason hit.
The WB's Popular was about one popular and one geeky girl who are bonded together through their parents' relationship. Starring Leslie Bibb and Carly Pope, the show earned the Teen Choice Award for Choice Breakout TV Show.
NBC's Animal Practice dealt with the everyday trials and tribulations of working in an animal hospital. Following his work on Weeds, Justin Kirk landed the lead role of Dr. George Coleman. The show hit a road bump when original showrunner Gail Lerner was replaced by Marco Pennette while filming.
Flight of the Conchords
New Zealand comedy duo Flight of the Conchords got their big break when HBO offered them a show. The first season, which aired in 2007, was a big hit for the cable network. A second season was slated for 2008, but it was delayed to 2009.
The Crazy Ones
In his career, showrunner David E. Kelley unveiled classics such as The Practice, Ally McBeal and Picket Fences. In 2013, he announced The Crazy Ones, which starred Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar. The series dealt with the behind-the-scenes madness in advertising.
While Christopher Meloni is known for his serious work on Law & Order, his comedic side is rarely showcased. With 2014's Surviving Jack, he took the title role with support from Rachael Harris and Connor Buckley. The show revolved around Dr. Jack Dunlevy having to spend more time with his children.
The Hard Times of RJ Berger
Director David Katzenberg adapted his short film The Tale of RJ into a series for MTV. 2010's The Hard Times of RJ Berger was a classic high school coming of age story. New Jersey native Paul Iacono nabbed the title role.
Before landing on Community, actor Ken Jeong made money as a doctor. The Detroit native showcased his experience in the doctor's office with ABC's Dr. Ken. Many of his Community co-stars, including Yvette Nicole Brown and Joel McHale, made guest appearances on the show.
Mary + Jane
MTV's Mary + Jane followed friends Jordan and Paige as they sold recreational drugs in Los Angeles. Created by Snoop Dogg, the show featured special guests such as Seth Green, Missi Pyle and Andy Daly. The rapper also made an appearance and performed the show's theme song.
10 Things I Hate About You
Based on the 1999 film of the same name, 10 Things I Hate About You debuted on ABC Family in 2010. Larry Miller, who played Walter Stratford in the film, reprised his role for the series. Gil Junger, who directed the film, directed several episodes of the show.
Powerless took place in the DC Universe, but it didn't feature big names like Batman or Superman. The show revolved around normal people trying to deal with the constant damage done by heroes and villains. That didn't mean familiar faces didn't appear, however. Adam West and former Jimmy Olsen actor Marc McClure made special appearances in the show.
Son of Zorn
Fox's Son of Zorn blended live-action with animation, which made it stand out on network television. The show dealt with Zorn connecting with his ex-wife and son in Orange County, California. The show's animation was heavily influenced by He-Man and the Masters of the Universe and Thundercats.
Cooper Barrett's Guide to Surviving Life
Cooper Barrett's Guide to Surviving Life dealt with the typical trials and tribulations of life. The titular Cooper Barrett was played by Jack Cutmore-Scott, and the series premiered online on December 21, 2015.
Seth Green has been a fixture on Fox for 20 years with his role as Chris Griffin on Family Guy. In 2013, he landed the lead role in the sitcom Dads. The show dealt with two developers that must rearrange their lives when their fathers move in.
ABC's Selfie dove into the modern age of social media gratification. The show follows Eliza Dooley, who simply can't get enough of using social media. The show also featured a rare interracial couple on primetime TV with actors Karen Gillan and John Cho.
Super Fun Night
After gaining significant buzz, comedian Rebel Wilson was granted her own sitcom. Debuting on ABC, 2013's Super Fun Night revolved around a trio of friends getting together every week for some mayhem.
Galavant mixed humor, fantasy and musical numbers for one of network TV's most intriguing programs. Tony Award-winning composers Alan Menken (Newsies) and Glenn Slater (The Little Mermaid) delivered some unforgettable songs. The show dealt with a knight named Galavant and his journey to get revenge on King Richard.
Former Saturday Night Live writer John Mulaney poked fun at himself with Mulaney. The Fox show dealt with his early years as a stand-up comedian in New York City. The show featured former Saturday Night Live cast member Nasim Pedrad as personal trainer Googoosh "Jane" Parvana.
Back in the Game
ABC's Back In The Game followed a mother coaching her son's youth baseball team. Brothers and Emmy-nominated writing team Mark and Robb Cullen developed the program. The show featured Psych actress Maggie Lawson and Hollywood Walk of Fame recipient James Caan.
What happens when actors actually try the job they portrayed? Well, that's the premise of The Grinder. Actor Dean Sanderson, Jr. (Rob Lowe) joined his family’s law firm after his show The Grinder ended. Joining Lowe on the cast awere Fred Savage and Mary Elizabeth Ellis.
Work It's premise caused a lot of controversy even before filming began. The idea of two men posing as women for a job angered LGBT advocacy groups, and the series premiere caused a firestorm online because of a tasteless joke about selling drugs. Things got so bad that protesters made their way to ABC's offices in New York City.
After the success of American Pie, directors Chris and Paul Weitz moved to TV with Off Centre. The sitcom dealt with a group of friends living on Centre Street in Manhattan. To keep the American Pie love growing, Eddie Kaye Thomas, who played Paul Finch in the films, starred as Mike Platt.
Manhattan Love Story
Manhattan Love Story followed a new couple and their relationship in the Big Apple. America's Next Top Model contestant Analeigh Tipton landed her first lead role on TV as Dana Hopkins. Jake McDorman, who is best known for his work in the teen drama Greek, portrayed Dana's boyfriend Peter Cooper.