Producing a TV show that's continuously satisfying is no easy feat, given that it requires showrunners and producers to deliver as many as two-dozen episodes per year to insatiable audiences.
It goes without saying that failures are near-inevitable, and practically every TV series in existence has episodes or even entire seasons that just fall a little short of the mark.
Sometimes these offences are egregious enough that those in charge actually attempt to deliver a thinly-veiled on-screen apology to loyal fans, whether course-correcting a wonky subplot, killing off a much-loathed character, or in more extreme instances, literally retconning dead characters back into existence.
It's always risky when a show blatantly draws attention to its own creative failings, but it can also serve as an olive branch to fans, to remind them that, yes, the people in charge are listening, and sometimes things just don't go as well as planned.
Whether or not these apologies actually pulled each series out of the doldrums, they nevertheless tried their damnedest to address creative issues which many viewers took major umbrage with...
10. "Repilot" - Community
After enjoying three seasons under the steady hand of showrunner Dan Harmon, Community's fourth season saw Harmon relieved of his position following creative tensions with Sony Pictures Television.
Despite their efforts, new showrunner team David Guarascio and Moses Port couldn't disguise the colossal void left by Harmon, with season four amping up the ridiculous storylines, making the characters caricatures of themselves, and simply feeling like a creative enterprise desperately attempting to replicate Harmon's inimitable comic style.
But Harmon was mercifully re-hired for season five, with its first episode being titled "Repilot" and effectively serving as a table-resetting "soft reboot" for the series.
Hilariously, Abed (Danny Pudi) even makes numerous allusions to this fact, while Harmon's script more overtly apologises to fans for the previous season by having Annie (Alison Brie) mention a gas leak which occurred the prior year.
The implication was that all of the bizarre and out-of-character moments in season four were caused by a gas leak on campus, and that season five would represent a gas-free return to the beloved norm.
If any TV show can get away with straight-up mocking its own flaws, it's surely Community.