2008 – 2009 Cancelled TV Shows: 12 ABC Series That Won’t Be Back for 2009 – 2010

The UnusualsABC announced their new schedule for the 2009 – 2010 season this week. Compared to its competition, the network is doing reasonably well but several long-running shows are losing steam and ABC still has some trouble spots in the schedule. There were a few surprises at the upfront presentation.

ABC has a history of renewing one or two struggling freshman shows. This time around it was Castle and Better Off Ted. They’re keeping Scrubs around for another year, surely because of syndication profits. And they’re also bringing back True Beauty, likely because it’s inexpensive and is compatible with other ABC shows. Word is that there will be some changes made to the series’ format when it returns.

Coming back next season are 20/20, America’s Funniest Home Videos, The Bachelor, Better Off Ted, Brothers & Sisters, Castle, Dancing with the Stars, Desperate Housewives, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Grey’s Anatomy, Lost, Private Practice, Scrubs, Supernanny, True Beauty, Ugly Betty, and Wife Swap.

Over the Summer, you’ll be able to see The Bachelorette, Here Come the Newlyweds, I Survived a Japanese Game Show, Primetime, Surviving Suburbia, and Wipeout. Who Wants to be a Millionaire is returning for a special run in August. New Summer fare include Dating in the Dark, The Goode Family, and The Superstars.

Which ABC show shouldn't have been cancelled?

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ABC is bringing out a lot of new programming next season, looking for a new hit. In fact, they’re completely revamping their Wednesday night schedule. New shows coming next season include Copper, Cougar Town, The Deep End, Eastwick, FlashForward, the forgotten, Hank, Happy Town, The Middle, Modern Family, Shark Tank, and a new version of the NBC classic, V.

And now, for the bad news. There are quite a few casualties. Here are the shows that won’t be back next season.

According to Jim
This old-style sitcom about a headstrong contractor and his beautiful wife was successful in its early seasons but, by season five, the ratings really started to decline. Still, the network kept renewing it and the sitcom managed to survive for eight seasons.

Boston Legal
The quirky legal drama that centers around attorneys at the Boston law firm of Crane, Poole and Schmidt. Due to a decline in viewership and attracting an older demographic, the network closed the show after five seasons.

A remake of the short-lived 1990s series of the same name, this show didn’t last as long as the original. Will we ever find out if Trevor is really Cupid — in either version?

Dirty Sexy Money
Even lawyer Nick George couldn’t save the Darling clan from being cancelled. ABC opted not to order a full second season and hasn’t gotten around to airing the remaining four installments.

Eli Stone
A successful lawyer begins to have visions that put his life in turmoil and take him on a personal and spiritual journey. ABC decided against ordering a full second season.

Homeland Security USA
A documentary-style show that follows men and women who help to keep our nation safe. ABC thought that the public would find this interesting. They didn’t and the network cancelled it.

Life on MarsIn the Motherhood
Based on a web series, this sitcom looks at the challenges of juggling motherhood with work and love lives in a complicated modern world. The sitcom was pulled after four episodes and the last three installments will run next month. It won’t be back for season two.

Life on Mars
A remake of a UK show of the same name, the series was struggling to hold onto its audience for its first handful of episodes. Then, the network put it on hiatus for three months and things got even worse. Thankfully the producers had enough time to wrap up the ongoing mystery.

Opportunity Knocks
The Aston Kutcher reality game show was pulled from the schedule after three installments were aired. The rest may see the light of day eventually but they aren’t making any more.

Pushing Daisies
The piemaker with the magic touch couldn’t save his own series from the grim reaper. It ran for two short seasons and the network has yet to air the final three installments.

Samantha Who?Samantha Who?
This sitcom looked very successful when it had a strong lead-in like Dancing with the Stars but few bothered to watch this Christina Applegate show without it. The final episodes are likely to air this Summer.

The Unusuals
An off-beat cop show that took over a Wednesday night timeslot from Life on Mars. ABC wanted this one to work but not enough people were interested. The show won’t be back next season.

Will you miss any of these cancelled shows? Has ABC made any mistakes or have they gotten these right? See any they shouldn’t have renewed but did? Be sure to leave your comments below!

Canceled and renewed TV show

100 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Molly says

    I can’t believe you’re cancelling Homeland Security USA…people need to know what these men and women deal with on a daily basis. American what is wrong with us when we’d rather watch a show like Wipe Out and I Survived a Japanese Game Show? I’m also disappointed that you decided to get rid of Dirty Sexy Money, Eli Stone, and last years Big Shots…they were GREAT SHOWS!
    Bring HS USA back American needs to see what goes on…you didn’t even scratch the surface of the death, sadness and despair that the Dept of Homeland sees. You didn’t even get to show an ounce of the degree of difficulty that posed to these men and women protecting our borders. Reconsider!

  2. Laurajean says

    I hate that all the shows I loved are being cancelled – Pushing Daisies, Cupid, Samantha Who. And yet the crappiest shows like Dancing with the Stars, The Bachelor and Supernanny get to stay! I HATE REALITY TV!!!! It is ruining TV – no brains, just idiots looking for attention. I wish the network would see how wonderful these non-reality shows are and stop thinking about money all the time. It would make for much better TV.

  3. Jolene says

    I loved the unusals it was great and funny…really love it…my tv brooke so i watch it on the internet…please leave it on

  4. cajundoll15 says

    I seriously cannot believe you are canceling Samantha who and Eli Stone. The best shows that have came out in a while, very uplifting and just genuinley good comedy. Which I believe we really need considering what our economy is in right now. Please do not cancel these shows. Every single character in Samantha Who is hilarious. I wait each week for this show to come on, and so does more than half of my friends. I dont see who gets to determine what shows stay and what shows go.

  5. says

    Samantha Who rocks and how unfair that you would bring shows in for the 30 something crowd and then just screw us off…really? What young person got fired from ABC for bringing in the cool and what old **** got hired and took it away! ?Just glad there are other stations who care what we think!

  6. Taylor says

    Love “Eli Stone” and the entire cast! Please don’t cancel the series. My family and I watch it religiously. Such a great story line…we need this uplifting show in these difficult times. We need Eli Stone to fight for the common folk and underdogs. Please don’t cancel.

  7. getitback! says

    Honestly, I hope someone else is smart enough to pick up the unusuals, ridiculous!!! It is a very nice show, and for once people younger than 30 are on ABC. How many friggin seasons of the Bachelor and Bachelorette can you haveee before people stop watching it. Ridiculous. I’m very glad they didn’t cancel Castle. I literally tuned on ABC all of the beginning of this year for Castle mondays, Cupid tuesdays and The Unusual wednesdays!!! but blah! whatever! and i like the fact that they kept brothers and sisters!

  8. Ron says

    The “Unsuals” he best show in ABC’s line up. Keep it and cancel the garbage shows like “Desperate Housewives: and “Ugly Betty”.

  9. Bring Back the Unusuals says

    Are you kidding?! The first time I started watching ABC in 10 years and they cancel the one original and entartaining series in their history? BRING BACK THE UNUSUALS!!!!

  10. says

    The Unusuals was a fabulous show – great, offbeat sense of humors, compelling characters, unexpected scenarios, imaginative writing and a great team of actors who worked beautifully together to create an atmosphere that was full of whackiness but also emotionally real. I just loved watching it all spring, and even found myself rearranging my life so as not to miss an episode. I’m so disappointed that it was canceled. I think the show wasn’t advertised properly, so most people didn’t know about it. Therefore it didn’t really even have a chance to reach the big prime-time audience ABC officials were hoping it would. I think this show is more than worth investing in for a second season. In my opinion, it was the single best thing ABC had to offer.

  11. Gerry Janes says

    No wonder I don’t watch ABC Anymore ! The people Who run it are Obviously not to smart ! Every time they get a Good show with good characters and good scripts they never give it a chance. I hope fox are smart enough to realize this could be a big hit and pick it up . ABC you stick to bachelor ! Maybe you will get a date some day !

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