Have you ever fallen madly in love with a series only to find out it ended after 1 or 2 seasons? Or to hear your favorite show will be canceled before season 3 hits despite the cliffhanger the writers left you on? While some series can go on for a decade or more (looking at you Doctor Who) some haven’t been as lucky. Here’s to the shows that ended too soon.
1.) Pushing Daisies
Pushing Daisies revolves around Ned the Piemaker who can bring someone back from the dead with just one touch. The downside is another touch will leave the resurrected permanently dead, which makes for a complicated relationship after Ned revives his childhood sweetheart.
At it’s heart Pushing Daisies is a love story, but it’s also part murder mystery. Ned uses his ability to bring back murder victims to get clues and help his detective friend catch the culprit. For such a morbid idea the show loves its color with a heavy usage of yellow and high saturation. It’s one of the more charming and creative plots I’ve seen on TV, but unfortunately it was canceled after 2 seasons.
2.) In the Flesh
If you haven’t seen In the Flesh please get on Hulu and watch it now. There are only 9 episodes, but the show is a heart stopping (pun intended) drama from start to finish. It centers on Kieren Walker, an 18 year-old who committed suicide and then returned as a zombie, who has just re-entered society after his transformation. Zombies in this universe have been treated and must take shots to keep them from going rabid along with wearing make-up and contacts to make them appear more normal. The show is more of a social commentary on prejudice, but done with zombies. They deal with slurs and try to avoid being attacked by looking and acting as humanly possible.
The series also incorporated a mythology building around the zombies with rumors of the first risen bringing about a second coming. Aside from the supernatural component, the series was primarily about acceptance. Overall the show is evenly balanced between lore and reality.
Despite winning a BAFTA, it was taken off air early on. There have been petitions online to revive it, but it looks like this one will remain buried.
3.) Agent Carter
I adore this show, but sadly it also ended after 2 seasons. While slow at points, Agent Carter worked amazingly as a vintage spy series with a realistically written woman taking the lead. It takes Peggy Carter from Marvel’s Captain America and follows her career and personal life after the film. We see her struggle to be seen in a male dominated field, but she also takes advantage of this invisibility to pursue independent cases. More than anything viewers watch her grow and find her own self worth in a 1940s America while also being a complete badass both mentally and physically.
While it didn’t get enough ratings to stay, there are rumors that it might come back as a Netflix or Hulu series. With the success of other Marvel Netflix shows, I think it’d be the perfect platform for this agent.
4.) You, Me, and the Apocalypse
This was recently taken off Hulu, but you can buy all 10 episodes (yes, only 10) on Amazon Video, which I recommend! While it only lasted one season the few episodes it does have make a satisfying arc that you can easily binge. Warning: You will be left with a massive cliffhanger which will cause you to re-watch the entire season.
This is another end of the world show with a comet impacting the earth in about 30 days. While the apocalypse theme is a bit worn down, the show only uses it as a setting. The show is more focused on the relations between a diverse group of people who are all connected. Every set of characters has their own unique plot making the show feel more like a loose anthology series. This is one of those shows that has you laughing, sobbing, biting your nails, and shaking a fist at the screen. I’m not sure why such an original series was canceled, but what a ride.
Galavant is fairly recent, but sadly it ended last year after 2 seasons. This is a musical comedy about knights, kings, and magic. It’s meant to be silly, but it also had well written character development and witty dialogue. Season 2 more than anything allowed the characters to grow and become more complex. I was mostly impressed by King Richard and Madalena. Richard goes from the antagonist to friend (my favorite trope) and the audience sees that he’s just a lonely man with a heart larger than his brain. On the other hand, Madalena goes from damsel in distress to evil queen and sorceress. Even while she became the true villain of the series, she was still sympathetic and relatable. Part of me wanted to see her win, but that’s one of the reasons why this show is so watchable. You get to know the characters well enough to root for all of them.
While the series did give Galavant and many other characters a neatly wrapped ending to their arcs, it did leave with one cliffhanger. One character had a story that was just beginning and one I was invested in, but sadly we won’t be seeing a conclusion anytime soon. I’m hoping a streaming service will pick it back up because even the complete endings felt rushed and unexplored.
What are some of your beloved canceled shows?