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15 Forgettable Television Spin-Offs

15 Forgettable Television Spin-Offs

July 4, 2009

Every time a hit shows comes to an end the attempt to keep alive the love is attempted.. Sometimes you get gold with shows like The Jeffersons, Good Times, Frasier, or A Different World.  However other times you get a show that leaves you scratching your head and the only time you think about it is when you see some remember when show on VH1.  Here are 15 highly forgettable spin-offs of the last 30 years!

Joey 2004-06 (Friends)


After Friends completed a monumental 10 year run that saw huge ratings, money making syndication deals, and hundreds of million of dollars the folks at NBC tried to keep the ball rolling with the Matt LeBlanc led spin-off Joey.  The premise was simple enough.  Joey moves to LA to pursue his acting career and is joined by his sister, played by Drea de Matteo,  and his nephew.  The show was so bad NBC put the show on hiatus, changed time slots, decided not to air remaining episodes, one main character jumped ship to head to CBS, and Matteo blames the show for her failure to get a new job.  My question is who the hell is buying the boxed set??

The Ropers 1979-80 (Three’s Company)


When you are part of a hugely successful ensemble comedy led by the super talented John Ritter and the ultra sexy Suzanne Summers maybe going off on your own isn’t the best idea.  Of course according to reports when Norman Fell and Audra Lindley got their own show in 1979 they were told that if it failed they could return to Three’s Company.  When their show suffered a rating plunge due to a time slot shift and stiff competition Norman tried to head back to his old job.  Unfortunately Don Knotts became the new landlord and Mr. Furley was too good to move aside.  The Ropers were no longer needed to collect the rent.

The Tortellis 1987 (Cheers)

The Tortellis

When deciding to create a spin-off of a popular show you might want to use a  notable character. Cheers got it right with Frasier, but in 1987 they tried it with Carla’s ex husband and new wife in The Tortellis.  Amazingly using two part time characters that appeared in about 20 minutes of Cheers didn’t result in blockbuster ratings.  The show lasted a total of 13 episodes.

Three’s a Crowd 1984-85  (Three’s Company)


When Three’s Company ended it’s run in 1984 they had Jack Tripper (John Ritter) ready to move in with his girlfriend Vicky Bradford (Mary Cadorette).  ABC brought in Robert Mandan to play Vicky’s dad who didn’t approve of their living together so he stuck atround to cause trouble – thus the Three’s A Crowd title.  Without Suzanne Summer and her sweater puppies, Mr. Furley, and Larry the show struggled gaining a foothold and was gone in 22 episodes.

After M*A*S*H 1983-85  (M*A*S*H)


When M*A*S*H, one of the most watched and critically acclaimed shows from 1972 until 105 million people watched the finale in 1983, ended it’s run a spin-off was not a good idea.  With only Colonel Potter, Klinger, and Father Mulcahy sticking around for a pay check the show never really had a chance.  Add to that the fact they were going head to head against The A-Team for an audience and you can guess the result.  After M*A*S*H lasted 31 episodes over two seasons and was put down.

Joanie Loves Chachi 1982-83 (Happy Days)


Joanie Loves Chachi was a nice idea. They were a favorite couple on Happy Days, had a nice following, and Scott Baio was a bit of a teen idol.  Of course changing the format into a pseudo musical comedy didn’ click with anyone and not even the Fonz could get this one hot.  The series only lasted two shortened seasons.

The Golden Palace 1982-83  (The Golden Girls)


When the very popular Golden Girls ended it’s run in 1992 NBC felt their was more ratings juice in those old bones.  Taking those old ladies and having them run an upscale hotel, The Golden Palace, was a logical choice.  People will say that a lousy Friday night time slot and the abscence of Bea Arthur was the reason for the short lived one season run, the fact that it was a lousy show had nothing to do with it.  Amazingly Don Cheadle was able to salvage his career after deciding to act as the hotel’s manager..

Living Dolls 1989  (Who’s the Boss?)


Leah Remini, the queen of cancellations, scored a spinoff from Who’s The Boss in 1989 by being a friend of Samantha Micelli (Alyssa Milano).  The show, Models Inc., was so bad it shot two different pilots, was given an F by people magzine, and it will never be relased on DVD.  Maybe because it only has like 5 episiodes??

Flo 1980-81 (Alice)


Alice was a top rated comedy on CBS for years and when they decided that a spin off was needed they decided that the loud mouth sassy Flo was the one do do it with.  Flo left Alice in the finale with plant to travel to Houston to be a hostess – yeah those jobs are hard to come by if you aren’t willing to relocate – but stops home and decided to by a rundown roadhouse.  The show started off alright, but after a time slot change in season two it was so long Flo.

Models Inc.  1994-1995  (Melrose Place)


Aaron Spelling was the king of the drama for years, but after Beverly Hills 90210 and Melrose Place came to an end a spin-off was an easy choice.  Models Inc. was the choice and it lasted under a year.  The show was based on a modeling agency in LA run by the mother of the character played by Heather Locklear.  Season one ended with a to be continued cliffhanger and that was also the series finale.

Enos 1980-81  (The Dukes of Hazzard)


Sonny Shroyer took a shot in 1980 to break out on his own from the boys in Dukes of Hazzard in Enos.  He moved to LA, became a cop, and fought crime.  Enos  still had a thing for Daisy Duke and lucky for him after his career in LA ended in one season the foks in Hazzard welcomed him back with open arms.

Beverly Hills Buntz 1987-88  (Hill Street Blues)


Hill Street Blues was a gritty cop show based on the streets of New York that ran for nearly 150 episodes in the early to mid 80’s.   When the show ended in 1987 the good folks at NBC decided that a Beverly Hills based dramedy spin-off would work. The series, Beverly Hills Buntz,  received some prime time slots, but never caught on – wonder why?  Dennis Franz might leave this one of his resume.

Top of the Heap/Vinnie & Bobby 1991-1992   (Married With Children)


Matt LeBlanc is welcomed to the forgettable list yet again.  Technically this counts as two shows, but we will put them together.  Matt LeBlanc did a bit role on Married With Children as Vinnie Verducci along with his Tad Charlie Verducci in the early 90’s.  This led to a spin-off entitled Top of the Heap, which failed, and was retooled as Vinnie and Bobby, which also failed.  Total run 14 combined episodes…all lousy.

Time of your Life 1999-2000   (Party of Five)


Party of Five was a popular FOX series that starred Neve Campbell, Scott Wolf, Matthew Fox, Lacey Chabert, and Jennifer Love Hewitt.  Hewitt was tapped to lead a spin-off entitled Time of Your Life.  The show followed Sarah to New York and her search to find out more about her biological mother.  Even Jenn’s amazing rack could draw people to watch this show.  it failed to get through it’s first season.

That 80’s Show 2002  (That 70’s Show)


Technically That ’80s Show was not a direct spin-off of That ’70s Show it was promoted with the show, contained the same writers, same format, same production staff, and a similar name.  What didn’t it have?  Good writing, good characters, good story lines, and an audience. The show lasted 13 forgettable episodes.

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