Every fan of television has dealt with the cancellation of their favorite shows. Whether for budgetary reasons, low view count, or other factors, it isn’t fun to see a show prematurely pulled from the air. While a show’s cancellation usually marks the end of a series, this isn’t often the case. Sometimes, like in the case of the recently revitalized Batman Caped Crusader, a show is saved and renewed. Today, we will look at canceled shows that got a second chance.
10. Batman Caped Crusader
Sometimes, a show is canceled before it has a real chance to air. This was the case for several shows slated to be released on HBO Max. Due to supposed tax write-offs, many shows, including a proposed Batman animated series, were canceled. The show was to be a noir-based series from Batman: The Animated Series veteran Bruce Timm and The Batman director Matt Reeves. This seemed like the perfect addition to the Dark Knight mythos, but the plug was pulled. Thankfully, Amazon has bought streaming rights to the series, which will find its new home at Amazon Prime Video.
9. Designated Survivor
It is always a shame when canceled shows have the rug pulled out just when they are getting momentum. This was the case for Designated Survivor when it has canceled just after the second season wrapped up. Questions were left unanswered, and entire plots were left wide open. Fans immediately took to the internet to campaign for the show’s renewal. Thankfully for them, the series was picked up by Netflix, who produced a third season and gave the series a proper finale.
8. Arrested Development
Arrested Development is perhaps one of the most famous examples of a show being saved from cancelation. The series ran on Fox for three seasons before being canceled in 2006. While many saved shows return within at least two years, fans of this series had to wait for six. in 2012, Netflix bought the rights to produce a new season. In 2013, seven years after the original cancellation, Netflix produced a new season, followed by a fourth and final season split between 2018 and 2019.
7. Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Sometimes, it is all about money. As is the case with Batman Caped Crusader, Brooklyn Nine-Nine was canceled after five seasons due to budgetary reasons. Even though Fox claimed the show had low ratings and was losing money, the series had a fiercely loyal fanbase. So loyal they took to social media to show their outrage. The fans were so vocal that NBC bought the show’s rights shortly after. The show enjoyed another three seasons on NBC.
6. Family Guy
It is hard to imagine the juggernaut series Family Guy joined the pantheon of canceled shows, but it did, Not once, but twice. The series aired in 1999 to rave reviews. For the second season, Fox inexplicitly changed the show’s time slot to put it in direct competition with Frasier, one of the most popular shows at the time. Fox canceled the show after the second season but decided to give it another chance.
The third season saw the show’s time slot once again changed, this time in completion with one of the most popular sitcoms of all time, Friends. The low ratings caused Fox to officially cancel the show after three seasons. DVD sales, as well as reruns on Adult Swim, received huge numbers, leading Fox to renew the series in 2005, where it has been running strong ever since.
Lucifer was a series based on the DC comics character of the same name. The show sees the Devil himself as he moves to Los Angeles and runs a nightclub. Regardless of fan praise, the declining ratings led Fox to cancel the series after three seasons. As with any loyal fanbase, Lucifer’s fans wasted no time vocalizing their displeasure. Like Arrested Development, Netflix bought the rights from Fox and produced three new seasons on their platform.
4. Star Wars: The Clone Wars
Like Batman Caped Crusader, Clone Wars was a Warner Bros.-produced animated series that was canceled. Clone Wars is a prequel taking place between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. The show was massively popular with Star Wars fans, young and old. During its six-season run, the show received high ratings and even higher critical praise. When Disney bought Lucasfilm in 2012, they made it clear they had big plans for the franchise.
Because of the purchase, Clone Wars was canceled in 2014. For years, fans practically begged Disney to renew the series. There were plenty of unanswered questions and unresolved plot points. Finally, Disney answered fans’ calls by producing a seventh season in 2020 for their Disney+ service.
The music drama Nashville was a massive success for ABC. The show was even responsible for a massive tourism boost for the real city of Nashville, and new fans arrived daily. Regardless, ABC decided to pull the plug on the series in 2016 after four seasons. Like with many other canceled shows, fans were quick to fight back. Within a month, the series was renewed for a fifth season by CMT. The show ran for two more seasons before getting a proper finale in 2018.
2. Last Man Standing
The Tim Allen comedy series Last Man Standing followed Allen’s character of Mike Baxter. Baxter was the executive of a sporting goods chain and lived with his wife and three daughters. The show ran on ABC for six seasons before being canceled, the station citing controversy as the main reason. The show wasn’t as controversial as ABC thought, as the fan base was large enough to petition for a new season. Fox picked up the series, where it ran for two more seasons.
Batman Caped Crusader ran into problems before the show made it to air. The popular series Community ran into some starting around season 3. Several key players in the show’s success, both on-screen and off, left the show for various reasons. This, mixed with declining ratings, led the show to be canceled after five seasons in 2014. A running joke in the show is “six seasons and a movie,” and fans weren’t resting until that happened. The series was picked up for a sixth season by the ill-fated Yahoo! Screen streaming service but was ultimately canceled for good after six seasons. It was recently announced Community was finally getting a movie on Peacock, giving fans exactly what they wanted.