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Fun Friday–Gone but Not Forgotten

Friday, October 26, 2007


Maybe it’s the fatalist in me, but whenever the new TV season starts, I’m leery of getting too attached to new shows because I’m pretty certain that if it turns out to be a show I really love, it’ll probably be cancelled—sometimes as soon as eight shows into the season, sometimes after one or two seasons. (I’m really hoping ABC’s new show Pushing Daisies is one that makes it.) There have been some that I loved that lasted years, though, and many of those are now either in constant reruns on TV Land or Nikelodeon. But there are some that were hardly given a chance—and those are the ones I decided to honor today: TV shows I loved that were on three or fewer seasons. Oh, and I found a great archive of TV shows, listed by the year they premiered:

(Series summaries are from

Square Pegs (1982-1983)

Welcome to Weemawee High School, where being in the right clique can make one’s years in school memorable. Enter Patty Greene and Lauren Hutchinson, two freshman who tried hard to be accepted into these cliques. The only problem was they stood out like sore thumbs. Patty was brainy and wore glasses, and Lauren was overweight and had braces. Thankfully, two other “square pegs” accepted them. They came in the form of aspiring comedian Marshall Blechtman and New Wave rocker Johnny Ulasewicz (aka Johnny Slash). Still, Lauren and Patty wanted to be in with the cool kids who came in the form of Jennifer DeNuccio, a wanna-be Valley Girl; LaDonna Fredericks, the hippest black girl in Weemawee High; Jennifer’s boyfriend Vinnie Pasetta, a John Travolta carbon copy; and Muffy Tepperman, a Jewish princess who joined anything from JV pep squad to science fair organizer. Starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Tracy Nelson, and Jami Gertz

Riptide (1984-1986)

Three Vietnam veterans now work as private eyes in sunny southern California. Nick and Cody are the muscles and Murray is a computer wizard of the trio and together they solve even the hardest cases. Starring Perry King, Joe Penny, and Thom Bray

Outlaws (1986)
(This show was so short-lived that there aren’t even any images to be found online!) Sometime during the 19th century, Sheriff Grail was chasing a gang of bank robbers when they were all accidentally thrown forward in time to the year 1986. Realizing they need to work together to survive (and perhaps to find a way home), the good guy and the bad guys team up to open their own private-detective agency to fight crime. Maggie was their neighbor and police contact. Ensemble cast featuring Rod Taylor, Richard Roundtree, and Charles Napier.

Starman (1986-1987)

A TV series sequel to the theatrical released film Starman. In the series, the alien returns to find and assist the child he fathered 14 years before on his visit to Earth. When he arrives, he takes on the identity of Paul Forrester, a prize-winning free-lance photographer with a rather wild reputation killed in a helicopter accident. He finds the child (Scott Hayden) and his mother (Jenny) have been separated. Paul convinces Scott to help him to locate Jenny, his friend from his first visit to Earth. Unfortunately, their search is plagued by George Fox, a paranoid government agent who feels Paul and Scott are dangerous and wants to capture, examine, and probably kill them. Starring Robert Hays and Erin Gray

The Young Riders (1989-1992)

Set just before the American Civil War, this series presented a highly fictionalized account of the heyday of the Pony Express. Its focus was a group of young Express riders based at the waystation in Sweetwater, Kansas. Running the station was ex-Texas Ranger and all-around eccentric Teaspoon Hunter. The role of cook, housekeeper and mother hen was filled first by Emma and later by Rachel. The riders included the future “Buffalo Bill” Cody and James Butler (“Wild Bill”) Hickok, as well as Ike, a mute, Buck, a half-White/half-Kiowa scout and the Kid, a quiet Southerner. Their final member was Lou, a young woman who lived and worked with the riders disguised as a boy. In second season, their group was joined by Noah Dixon. Ensemble cast featuring among others Josh Brolin and Stephen Baldwin

Time Trax (1993-1994)

Darien Lambert, Captain of the Fugitive Retrieval Section in the 22nd century, time-travels to the 20th century to capture 22nd century criminals who have escaped by time-traveling. He is armed with a PPT, a 3-button weapon that can render a man unconscious or send a man to the 22nd century. He has a computer named Selma, disguised as a credit card. Selma helps him to capture the fugitives, for she has access to various databases, and can make logical conclusions. She has also many other functions. The main criminal is Mo Sahmbi, who invented the time machine (TRAX) and helped the criminals to get away. Lambert cannot go to the 22nd century until he has captured all the fugitives. Starring Dale Midkiff and Elizabeth Alexander

The Cape (1996-1997)

Drama about astronauts and candidates at the Kennedy Space Center. Filmed on location, it had NASA’s cooperation (and former astronaut Buzz Aldrin as a technical advisor). Ensemble cast featuring Adam Baldwin and Corbin Bernsen

The Magnificent Seven (1998-2000)

In a time of outlaws, seven young heroes, each with unique talents and abilities, band together to help tame the wild west and protect the citizens of a small frontier town. Ensemble cast featuring Eric Close, Michael Biehn, and Dale Midkiff

UC: Undercover (2001-2002)

A complex action-thriller which focused on the secret lives and private demons of an elite Justice Department crime-fighting unit that confronted the country’s deadliest, most untouchable lawbreakers by going undercover to bust them. As a federal team, the group responded to emergencies all over the country — taking down elite bank robbers, drug kingpins, domestic terrorists, spies, jewel thieves and dirty cops. Starring ODED FEHR (and some other people)

Firefly (2002-2003)

In the distant future, Captain Malcolm ‘Mal’ Reynolds is a renegade former war rebel now turned smuggler/rogue who is the commander of a small spacecraft. With a loyal hand-picked crew and a couple of fugitives, they travel the far reaches of space in search of food, money, and anything to live off on.
Ensemble Cast featuring Adam Baldwin and Nathan Fillion

  1. Friday, October 26, 2007 10:31 am

    We have so many shows in common! I loved Young Riders, Outlaws, Magnificent Seven, Undercover (b/c of Oded), and Riptide.


  2. Friday, October 26, 2007 12:39 pm

    Firefly was one of the most amazing sci-fi shows ever created.

    We got totally hooked on Rescue 77 many years ago on the WB. Sadly it only lasted 1 season.


  3. Friday, October 26, 2007 3:04 pm

    I confess–I haven’t even seen one of those shows! My parents made me go to bed early.


  4. Friday, October 26, 2007 4:07 pm

    I never watched t.v. much till I was in high school– so I’m another one out of the loop.

    One I really hope keeps going this season is “Chuck.” I like *so* many things about that show. Not the least of which is a lead who can be funny and smart both. And, wow, the writers acknowledge that an “average” guy can actually have a protective instinct to overbalance his self-protective instinct.

    (We all admire the wisdom of those who think like us, and I appreciate writers who see the hero in good men.)


  5. Friday, October 26, 2007 6:01 pm

    So many of my friends were pissed off when Firefly was canceled. They loved that show. I don’t remember any of the others. Of course I didn’t discover TV until about 2000 (yes I was 20 something and in college) but there are definitely a few shows I’ve gotten attached to that were yanked. *sigh*


  6. Crystal permalink
    Friday, February 18, 2011 11:36 am

    How upset were you when Pushing Daisies cancled? I was so upset. That was the second time I started watching a show and it ended. The first was the show Reunion.



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