Short-Lived TV Shows Worth Watching

by Sebastian Krawiec

With the sheer volume of content out there on streaming platforms like Netflix and Hulu, as well as our tendency for binge watching, it’s becoming a chore to get into new TV shows. Our time is precious and the last thing we need is to catch up on are five seasons of a popular show because the new season is fast approaching. Here’s an alternative to that: watch short-lived TV shows that didn’t get their fair shake and only lasted one season. Despite their short life, some of these shows are actually really great and deserve your attention.


This is a great neo noir private detective story. It stars Donal Logue as a recovering alcoholic and ex-cop who teams up with a reformed thief and kleptomaniac in an unlicensed private detective firm. A great mix of funny and extremely dark, navigating through small-time grifts and huge conspiracies, this is a really fun show to get into. It was well received by critics, but alas, did not have the viewership it deserved. (Streaming on Netflix)


The Black Donnellys:

Basically the Irish Godfather, set in contemporary New York City, it stars Jonathan Tucker as reluctant leader Thomas Donnelly, who goes from having to clean up his troublesome older brother’s messes to leading a criminal organization as he sinks deeper into that dark world. Kate Mulgrew, who you may recognize as Red from Orange is the New Black, plays the mother, and Olivia Wilde is Thomas Donnelly’s love interest. The show is made more interesting as it’s voiced by an unreliable narrator, who’s in jail and ratting on the family which under heavy investigation, having grown into quite the criminal enterprise. (Streaming on Netflix)



Cool sci-fi created by Joss Whedon, who has been responsible for the likes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and The Avengers. It’s an interesting cross between sci-fi and western genres starring Nathan Fillion as Captain of the spaceship Serenity. He and his rag tag crew do jobs, often unlawful, throughout space and get into all kinds of adventures. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and is an overall fun show. It has an intense cult following, and was made into a great movie after its cancellation to continue where the show left off. (Streaming on Netflix)


Freaks and Geeks:

This show always makes lists similar to this one, and for good reason. Created by Paul Feig, produced by Feig and Judd Apatow, and featuring a cast that includes James Franco, Seth Rogen, Linda Cardellini and Jason Segel, this show provided a platform for some of the most talented actors, writers and directors out there right now. A very organic teen comedy, Freaks and Geeks’ potential was squandered when NBC cancelled the show after only twelve episodes (eighteen episodes were completed). It has since developed a very intense cult following. (Streaming on Netflix)


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Writer/Blogger at The Digest. Lifelong New Jersey resident. Actually likes this place.


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