Sometimes, TV shows are cancelled before their time. Either due to low viewing figures, expense or just issues with the network, certain shows aren’t built to last.
While most cancelled shows are usually terrible and rightfully cancelled, a rare handful are actually pretty great. Occasionally, high quality plus continued interest from the fanbase can bring shows back; Futurama, Family Guy, Veronica Mars and, most recently, Brooklyn 99 all received this treatment.
However, things don’t always work this way. Most of the time, dead shows stay buried. Even then though, we can still admire the wonderful episodes they left behind. Just because these shows didn’t last long doesn’t mean they weren’t very good.
‘Not being very good’ is rarely that decisive a factor in cancellation, after all. Some terrible shows keep chugging along with just enough viewership to make them profitable. Likewise, these shows all put out some great episodes, but failed to survive on quality alone.
To qualify, a show must have only put out a paltry amount of episodes, have gone out while there was still more to give, and have a fanbase (however small some are) desperate to have received more from their beloved characters.
10. Paedophilia - Brass Eye
Brass Eye was years ahead of its time, and even now it seems like satirical comedy is playing catch up to this phenomenal show. In true British fashion, the show only ran for seven episodes, with a debut season of six before a final episode (Paedophilia) was produced as the final curtain.
For a show that never pulled its punches anyway, Paedophilia was them going all out, and it really showed.
Chris Morris, Graham Lineham and Charlie Brooker were all in the writing room, combining for one of the funniest shows Britain has ever produced. Posing as a news broadcast with several field reporters and talking heads (all played by Morris), the show was in fact ridiculous, though the whole thing was played hilariously straight.
Previous episodes focussed on the plight of animals, detailing Karla the elephant, who had trapped her trunk in her anus, and an episode on drugs where Morris approached dealers and made up street names for the latest substances.
Paedophilia though focussed on the discrimination paedophiles face (it’s another form of racism) and the host getting offended when a guest paedophile didn’t fancy his ten year old son. Unsurprisingly, it was one of Britain’s most complained about broadcasts ever.