These 12 TV Shows Were Canceled Before They Could Properly End, And I'd Like To Have A Word With The Networks

It's kind of wild that a TV show can just be canceled at any time and seemingly for any reason.

"Shut it down!"
"Shut it down!"

NBCUniversal Television Distribution / Via

Imagine if a movie just ended halfway through. Like, you're super invested in the storyline, but then it just...ends.

"Is that it?"
"Is that it?"

Bravo / Via

Over the past few decades, we've unfortunately seen a lot of our favorite shows get the axe. It's hard enough when a show ends on its own terms, but when it's canceled, we never really get proper closure.

Here are 12 TV shows that were canceled before they were given a chance to finish their storylines:

Note: Heavy spoilers ahead.

1.Blockbuster (2022)

Screenshots from "Blockbuster"

After the show didn't get great reviews and didn't do as well as Netflix had hoped it would in terms of viewership, the streaming service decided to cancel Blockbuster after just one season, sadly leaving us with only 10 episodes.

The workplace comedy follows the owner of the last Blockbuster in America, Timmy (Randall Park), and his employees as they deal with the everyday struggles of running a video store. In the final moments of the show, Eliza (Melissa Fumero) accidentally admits her true feelings for Timmy on camera, and after the store is left in shambles, Timmy decides he's done with Blockbuster.


2.Popular (1999-2001)

The cast of "Popular"

Ryan Murphy's first (and arguably best) TV show, the WB's Popular only ran for two seasons. During the last episode, one of the characters is literally hit by a car, and then it just ends. Murphy later said that the network was always asking him to make the show "less gay" and adding their own storylines that didn't exactly fit with his vision. He cited that trying to merge his version of the show with the network's was the reason for Popular's cancelation.

Touchstone Television/Courtesy Everett Collection

3.Minx (2022)

Screenshot from "Minx"

In a move I will truly never understand, Minx was canceled by the newly merged Warner Bros. Discovery just last month, despite having been already renewed for a second season (and despite being practically done with filming it). To make matters worse, and even more confusing for fans of the show like me, Warner Bros. Discovery even removed the first season from HBO Max.

The show, which follows a feminist writer in the '70s, Joyce (Ophelia Lovibond), as she and porn publisher, Doug (Jake Johnson), create the "first erotic magazine for women," ends when he gives her back control of the magazine after taking it from her. There's still a chance that another network may pick up the series, so hopefully, sometime in the near future, we'll be able to find out the fate of the fictional Minx magazine.

UPDATE: Starz has picked up Minx, and we're getting a Season 2!

Lionsgate Television

4.Everything Sucks! (2018)

Screenshot from "Everything Sucks!"

Everything Sucks! is just one of the many on an ever-growing list of queer TV shows that Netflix canceled after just one season (First Kill, I Am Not Okay with This, The Get Down — all of which are on this list). The 1996-set show follows Luke (Jahi Di'Allo Winston), a high school freshman, as he tries to make a movie. It even features a pre-Euphoria Sydney Sweeney.

In the Season 1 finale, one of the main characters, Kate (Peyton Kennedy), is interrupted as she tries to come out to her father. And then, at the very end of the episode, we see Luke's estranged dad knocking on Luke's door, right before it cuts to black. It definitely sets up for Season 2, but unfortunately, we'll never see it. Netflix cited a "lower completion rate" as the reason for the cancelation.

Scott Patrick Green / Netflix/Courtesy Everett Collection

5.Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000)

The cast of "Freaks and Geeks"

Before he made movies like Bridesmaids and the Ghostbusters reboot, Paul Feig created one of the best TV shows of all time. That's a bold statement, I know, but if you've ever seen Freaks and Geeks, you'll know exactly what I mean. Unfortunately, the show was canceled after its first season due to low ratings (which fans consider to be the network's fault) and had nothing to do with the content of the show. NBC actually stopped airing the show after the twelfth episode, but was forced to air the last six episodes after fans demanded it.

NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection / Everett Collection

In the last ever episode, we see two of the main characters, Lindsay (Linda Cardellini) and Kim (Busy Philipps), meet up to see The Grateful Dead in concert.

Kim and Lindsay

Not a HUGE "I need to see what happens next" moment, and honestly, it works as a series finale. But considering how well-made the show is and how much more could have been explored, it's kind of hard to swallow that that's

DreamWorks SKG

6.First Kill (2022)

Screenshot from "First Kill"

Netflix's First Kill, a very Romeo and Juliet-esque love story between Juliette (Sarah Catherine Hook), a Legacy vampire, and Calliope (Imani Lewis), a vampire hunter, was a huge hit in 2022, having been in Netflix's top 10 list.

Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

At the end of the last episode of the first season, after Juliette accidentally turns Calliope's brother into a vampire, Cal vows to spend the rest of her life trying to figure out how to kill Legacy vampires.

Screenshot from "First Kill"

But after Netflix canceled the series after just one season, that's, unfortunately, the final ending we're left with.

Fans quickly compared First Kill's cancelation to Heartstopper's renewal. Heartstopper, an LGBTQ+ show with two white male leads was renewed, while First Kill, a Black-led show with two lesbian main characters, was cancelled, even though First Kill reportedly had more views.


7.My So-Called Life (1994-1995)

The cast of "My So-Called Life"

This incredibly-'90s show follows Angela (Claire Danes) as she deals with high school. It also features the "first openly gay teenager on American network TV," in the character of Angela's friend, Rickie Vasquez (Wilson Cruz), and deals with some pretty heavy topics for a teen show. Though critics loved it, it failed to get the viewership it needed. And despite a huge campaign from fans to keep the show alive, ABC canceled it after its first season.

In the final moments of the show, Angela finds out her neighbor, Brian (Devon Gummersall), is in love with her, but ends up, albeit hesitantly, getting into a car with teen heartthrob, Jordan Catalano (Jared Leto). What I would've given for just one...more...episode. UGH.

ABC/Courtesy Everett Collection

8.GLOW (2017-2019)

Screenshot from "GLOW"

This Emmy-winning show had just started filming its fourth and final season when COVID-19 hit and was forced to shut down production. But, instead of continuing filming where they left off, Netflix decided to just cancel the series instead.

Netflix / courtesy Everett Collection

So, we're left with this giant cliffhanger of Debbie (Betty Gilpin) asking Ruth (Alison Brie) to direct a show on her and Bash's (Chris Lowell) new television network, and Ruth turning her down.

Screenshots from "GLOW"

Not to mention, there's so much more to explore with Bash's character and his sexuality after his threesome!

Fans were deservedly upset, and Alison Brie, who plays Ruth, said that GLOW's cancelation was "the great heartbreak" of her career.


9.Santa Clarita Diet (2017-2019)

Screenshot from "Santa Clarita Diet"

After three seasons, Netflix canceled Santa Clarita Diet due to "a combination of things," mostly, though, it seemed to be a budget issue.

The show, about a woman, Sheila (Drew Barrymore), who turns into a flesh-eating zombie, ends right as she bites her husband, Joel (Timothy Olyphant), after he gets possessed by a spider-like creature. Quite the cliffhanger if you ask me, but at least the show's creator, Victor Fresco, gave us some sort of closure. He tweeted: “Yes, Joel is Possessed by Mr. Ball Legs who at first makes him do his bidding…but then, he and Sheila hunt bad people together, and their love for each other goes on forever!"

Saeed Adyani / Netflix/Courtesy Everett Collection

10.Julie and the Phantoms (2020)

Screenshot from "Julie and the Phantoms"

This Kenny Ortega-produced musical series about a teen girl (Madison Reyes) helping the ghosts of a boy band cross over to the other side was canceled after just one season, despite earning a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. The series ends just as the villain of the show possesses the body of the boy that has a crush on Julie.

No real reason was given as to why the show was canceled, but fans were outraged, even creating a petition to bring it back. Even though there's no future for Julie and the Phantoms at Netflix, Kenny Ortega seems willing to bring back the characters in some form or another.

Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

11.The Get Down (2016-2017)

Screenshot from "The Get Down"

This musical series follows Zeke (Justice Smith) and other aspiring musicians in 1970s Bronx during the early years of hip-hop. In the final episode, we see Zeke get accepted into Yale, while Mylene (Herizen F. Guardiola), Zeke's girlfriend, heads off to California. And while running away from the police, Thor (Noah Le Gros) gets arrested, while Dizzee (Jaden Smith) ends up in a tunnel running toward an oncoming train. Clearly, there are some loose ends that need to be tied up, but Netflix canceled the series before any questions were answered.

While we don't know for sure why it was canceled, it was one of the most expensive TV shows in Netflix history; it cost $120 million to make.

Netflix/Courtesy Everett Collection

12.And finally, I Am Not Okay with This (2020)

Screenshot from "I Am Not Okay with This"

Netflix's I Am Not Okay with This follows teenager Sydney (Sophia Lillis), who, after her father dies, starts to notice she has superpowers. At the very end of the last episode, Syd's high school tormentor, Brad (Richard Ellis), is about to tell everyone at the homecoming dance that she has powers. But, before he can, she accidentally, and telekinetically, blows up his head.

Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

In the final moments, as Syd runs into the woods, someone approaches her and gives her a mysterious message.

"They should be afraid. Let's begin."

It's a perfect setup for a second season, which according to show-runner Jonathan Entwistle, was to be the last.

And Netflix did renew the show, but then, after COVID-19 hit, they decided not to proceed. Entwistle asked Netflix if he could change the ending so it wasn't that much of a cliffhanger, simply by removing the dialogue of the person who approaches Syd at the end. But the streaming service declined his request. So now, this is what we're left with.

The good news: The show is based on a graphic novel, so we can certainly find out what Syd's future is. The sort of bad news: Her future doesn't look too good.


What are some other shows that were canceled right in the middle of a storyline? Comment below!

This post has been updated with news about Minx.