21 of The Worst TV Spin-Offs Ever Produced

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Audiences always crave more of their beloved TV shows. However, sometimes more doesn’t necessarily mean better. Today, we want to examine some of the worst TV spin-offs ever produced. 

We have bravely dug through the hate forums to determine which spin-off programs audiences dislike the most. From reboots to continuations, it’s clear that some of these stories should have never made it past a storyboard. 

1. Law & Order: Trial by Jury (2005-2006)

Photo Credit: Wolf Films.

What would happen if you removed the action and suspense from Law & Order? You would get this poorly planned-out crime spin-off. Law & Order Trial by Jury decided that they should have a show focused more on the court proceedings of the justice system.

While this isn’t a bad thought, in theory, the execution was awful. Dramatized court proceedings can be entertaining, but no one wants to sit through a detailed jury selection panel. 

2. The Brady Bunch Variety Hour (1976-1977)

Photo Credit: Sid & Marty Krofft Television Productions.

This is an odd one. The Brady Bunch Variety Hour is a spin-off about a single episode of the Brady Bunch. This episode features the Brady family appearing on a game show for laughs. However, after the original series ended, the studio dug up that idea and created eight more episodes on that premise.

To recap, The Brady Bunch Variety Hour is a show within a show that was turned into its own series. The novelty of this act quickly wore off, and audiences became bored with the premise. The project was finished within the year, never to be spoken of again. 

3. How I Met Your Father (2022-2023)

Photo Credit: Patrick Wymore/HULU.

This series is simply a gender-swapped version of How I Met Your Mother—at least, that was the original pitch. The series moved away from the show’s original continuity as the series progressed.

This change frustrated audiences hoping for more details about the storyline they had come to love. Frustration turned to boredom, and the project was scrapped in less than two years. 

4. American Juniors (2003)

Photo Credit: 19 Entertainment.

One of the significant draws of American Idol is the emotional devastation that the contestants go through. Achieving your dreams or watching them turn to dust in your hands is an emotional experience that audiences can’t help but enjoy. 

Fox took that premise and decided to see how it would work on a group of children. Suffice it to say that it did not go over well. American Juniors lasted seventeen episodes before being pulled from the lineup. 

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5. Joey (2004-2006)

Photo Credit: Hessam.

Friends is one of the highest-grossing sitcoms of all time. It makes sense that NBC wanted to keep that cash cow going for as long as possible. However, the network put all of its eggs in Joey’s basket just to watch it crash before them.

The series followed Joey as he moved to Hollywood to become an actor. However, without the chemistry of his co-stars, the series felt flat and uninspired. Joey lasted two seasons before being canceled.

6. That 80s Show (2002)

Photo Credit: Carsey-Werner Company.

There isn’t a good reason for That 80s Show’s failure. Modeled after the wildly successful That 70s Show, the series followed the same formula and even had a similar writing staff. For whatever reason, the series just never resonated with its fan base. As a result, it was canceled after just one season. 

7. CSI: Cyber (2015-2016)

Photo Credit: Jerry Bruckheimer Television.

Not learning from the mistakes of Law & Order, CSI also made an action-based show that was a bore to watch. CSI: Cyber took the franchise into the dark world of cybercrimes. While this is an essential aspect of law enforcement, it doesn’t translate into engaging TV. Watching a villain stare into a laptop in a dark room doesn’t hit the same as a roaming serial killer. 

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8. AfterMASH (1983-1985)

Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox Television.

Mash was a beloved series during the Vietnam War for its mixture of humor and sobering reflection. AfterMASH took some of those beloved characters and set them up in a VA Hospital in Missouri. 

However, without discussing the conflict of the war, the actors’ chemistry fell apart. With no central plot point to hold the series together, audiences quickly became bored with the new premise. The series lasted two seasons before being canceled. 

9. The Patrick Star Show (2021)

Photo Credit: Nickelodeon Animation Studios.

SpongeBob SquarePants may be the best children’s television show ever created. So, it’s no surprise that the studio wanted to continue profiting from the IP after the original series ended. That said, there may have been better ideas than basing an entire series around SpongeBob’s best friend, Patrick.

Parick is a beloved part of the show but doesn’t have the charisma or charm of SpongeBob. His wild antics make for great side stories, not full-fledged story arcs. As of now, the series is still in production. 

10. Better Call Saul Presents: Slippin Jimmy (2022)

Photo Credit: AMC Networks Content Room.

Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul are dark, gritty dramas centered around morally gray protagonists. So, it’s easy to understand why audiences were surprised that the new spin-off would be an animated series following Saul Goodman’s childhood. 

Better Call Saul Presents: Slippin Jimmy is an animated series detailing several hijinks the corrupt lawyer engaged in during his youth. This tonal shift upset many viewers, with some referring to it as the worst piece of media ever made. 

11. Littlekenny (2019)

Photo Credit: Little Blackstone Studios.

While not as egregious as Better Call Saul Presents: Slippin Jimmy, Littlekenny falls into the same category of failed spin-offs. Litterkenny is a raunchy Canadian comedy about drinking, sex, hockey, and violence. Littlekenny takes these characters and places them in an animated series as children.

Not only is the premise flawed, but each episode is only about four minutes long, leaving audiences to wonder why this short-lived spin-off was created in the first place. 

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12. Fear the Walking Dead (2015-2023)

Photo Credit: AMC.

The Walking Dead franchise has many spin-offs, some less than great. However, Fear the Walking Dead is one of the most hated spin-offs of the beloved franchise. Although the series had a good hook, the fall of civilization due to zombies, it lacked the character depth that won fans over in the beginning. 

Not only that, but Fear the Walking Dead was riddled with plot holes and poor writing. Fans watched as characters made decisions that lacked logic or character-driven reasoning. The series felt more like a cash grab than the well-thought-out premise that fans expected from the franchise. 

13. The Cleveland Show (2009- 2013)

Photo Credit: Persons Unknown Productions.

The Family Guy franchise has many characters that fans have come to love over the years. One of them is Peter Griffin’s friend, Cleveland Brown. However, fans quickly realized Brown wasn’t entertaining without the rest of the Family Guy characters. The series was quickly scrapped and used as a joke in the original Family Guy series. 

14. Velma (2023)

Photo Credit: Charlie Grandy Productions.

It’s hard to judge the public opinion on Velma. Although the series received widespread disapproval from fans, HBO decided to give it a second season. This means that some people must like the series, or people hate watched the show so many times that it tricked HBO into thinking people enjoyed it. 

The main complaint with the spin-off seems to be that a raunchy modern character adaptation wasn’t needed. While that doesn’t seem like a great reason to hate the series, it did not stop online commentators from stating that the spin-off ruined their collective childhoods. 

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15. The Conners (2018)

Photo Credit: Jax Media.

At one point, Roseanne dominated prime-time television. The down-to-earth series followed a working-class family struggling to make ends meet. Its premise resonated with audiences who could relate to the hardships they were viewing.

Many people were excited to hear that the series would return. Unfortunately, the show’s titular character, Roseanne Barr, posted some hateful comments on X and was removed from the show. This change in cast and the loss of respect for the main character soured many people’s opinion of the show. 

16. Snooki & Jwoww (2012-2015)

Photo Credit: 495 Productions.

Spin-offs from reality TV shows happen all the time. However, when Jersey Shore announced a new spin-off series, audiences knew they were in trouble. Snooki and Jwoww combined the two most prominent personalities they could find and placed them in front of a camera. This ended up being more attitude than even Jersey Shore fans could handle. 

17. Baywatch Nights (1995-1997)

Photo Credit: All American Television.

This one is at least funny. Baywatch Nights had a brilliant idea. What if David Hasselhoff was a lifeguard by day but turned into a paranormal detective at night? Imagine if the cast of Supernatural also worked at Dairy Queen to make ends meet, and you have a general idea of what the show is about.

Unfortunately, this premise did not resonate with fans. This spooky version of Baywatch lasted two seasons before the studio decided to bury it. 

18. Buddies (1996)

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Interestingly enough, this Dave Chappelle series is a spin-off from Home Improvement. Dave Chappelle and Jim Breuer performed a cameo on the hit series Home Improvement for one episode. The studio enjoyed their presence enough to offer Chappelle a series based on his performance.

However, they did not care for Breuer and removed him from the series. This decision would be the show’s downfall. Chappelle and Breuer were close friends and had natural chemistry. Without their chemistry, the new series felt stunted and dry. The network quickly dropped buddies after a single season. 

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19. The Walking Dead: World Beyond (2020-2021)

Photo Credit: AMC.

For some reason, this Walking Dead spin-off focused on teenage drama instead of zombies. The Walking Dead: The World Beyond follows four teens who must make their way in a post-apocalyptic world. 

While that setting would typically be received well, audiences felt that the series focused too much on the teen aspect instead of the post-apocalyptic setting. Failing to capture the attention of its base, the series was scrapped after just two seasons. 

20. Saved by the Bell: The College Years (1993-1994)

Photo Credit: NBC Productions.

Bringing the students from Saved by the Bell into higher education makes sense from a storytelling perspective. However, much of the original cast wasn’t interested in being a part of the reboot, leaving the show feeling hollow.

If that wasn’t enough, audiences didn’t care for the reboot’s new adult themes. Saved by the Bell featured wholesome teenage antics that parents could stand behind. By comparison, Saved by the Bell: The College Years took a drastic tonal shift, featuring one of the cast members having an affair with their professor. This shift in tone put audiences off, leading to the show’s quick cancellation. 

21. The Brady Brides (1981)

Photo Credit: Maxwell Eck.

There were five Brady Bunch spin-offs. However, none of them were as poorly received as The Brady Brides. The concept is simple enough. Marcia and Jan marry their new husbands and the four move into the same house. Audiences soon experienced Brady Bunch fatigue and lost interest in watching four people argue in a home. The series only lasted ten episodes before being canceled.

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21 Movies Everyone Should See At Least Once in Their Life

Photo Credit: Pandora Cinema.

More films are available to watch than anyone could see in a lifetime. With so many options to choose from, finding a suitable movie can be a daunting task. However, some of these films have transcended time and culture to leave a critical mark on the world of cinema.

To help viewers on their journey of film brilliance, we have cultivated a list of films we believe everyone should see once. From heart-wrenching dramas to irreverent comedies, this list provides some of the best entries the world of film has to offer.

21 Movies Everyone Should See At Least Once in Their Life

19 Films Where the Main Character Discovers They’re Not the Good Guy in the End

Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Through legitimate or illegitimate means, the main character doesn’t always end the film as a good person. Sometimes it comes through a shocking twist, sometimes we’ve known all along that this main character is not somebody we actually like.

19 Films Where the Main Character Discovers They’re Not the Good Guy in the End

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