The Worst TV Shows Ever Made

There’s no shortage of television shows.

With cable, streaming platforms, and primetime, the variety is vast, and television shows have never been better. However, the TV industry has let a few lemons slip through the cracks over the years. Whether they were shows with implausible plots, terrible writing, or even some A-list talent with very little to work with many of these shows left both critics and audiences befuddled.

Some of these shows are so bad that you’ll wonder how they got made in the first place, including one show that everyone wanted to stay a classic movie (No. 18).

30. Truth Be Told

Truth Be Told

Truth Be Told | Colleen Hayes/NBC

  • Network: NBC | Number of Seasons: 1

Comedy is challenging to write, and the jokes have to be spot on to hold an audience’s attention. When Truth Be Told aired in 2015, it looked promising. The series followed a pair of couples were best friends and neighbors. The show was loosely based on the life of creator and executive producer D. J. Nash. Unfortunately, real-life is not that interesting unless it’s done well and Truth Be Told did not hit the nail on the head.

Instead, it descended into the world of the dull and beige in a television industry that is increasingly colorful and sharp.

Next: A trainwreck of a show set in Miami 

29. South Beach

South Beach

South Beach | UPN

  • Network: UPN | Number of Seasons: 1

Produced by Jennifer Lopez, South Beach had all of the glitz and glam in its toolbox to be the next version of The O.C. Starring legends like Vanessa L. Williams and Giancarlo Esposito, the series followed friends, Vincent and Matt who move from Brooklyn to South Beach seeking out new opportunities. Of course, they fall into the nightlife, meeting women and getting into fights. Sadly, there was little to no substance on South Beach. The show only ran from Jan. to Feb of 2006.

The critics were not kind, and the show was one of the lowest rated on TV when it aired in 2006. The Miami Herald said, “Cannibalism is about the only thing missing from this delirious new trashfest of hard bodies and soft brains.”

Next: A disaster show that was well, a disaster 

28. 10.5 Apocalypse

10.5 Apocalypse

10.5 Apocalypse | NBC

  • Network: NBC | Number of Seasons: Mini-series

You know it’s bad when a drama unintentionally becomes a comedy because it’s so absurd. NBC’s 2006 mini-series, 10.5 Apocalypse followed a seismologist who after witnessing a huge earthquake that causes devastation on America’s West Coast discovers that it is going to cause the imminent explosion of two nuclear reactors.

10.5 Apocalypse would have at least been interesting to watch if another disaster didn’t happen every five seconds. It became more hilarious then devastating to watch.

Next: The Golden Girls did it better. 

27. Twenty Good Years

Twenty Good Years

Twenty Good Years | NBC/ Greg Schwartz

  • Network: NBC | Number of Seasons: 1

With John Lithgow and Jeffrey Tambor together on one sitcom, NBC thought they had a gem on their hands when Twenty Good Years debuted in 2006. The series followed a surgeon (Lithgow) who is forced into retiring and his old friend and polar opposite, a judge (Tambor). Together, the men decide that because they only have a few good years left they want to start living life to its fullest. The show’s concept and talent weren’t bad, however, the writing was so poor, most people just turned it off and watched reruns of The Golden Girls instead.

Next: A party planning reality show that wasn’t any fun. 

26. Get This Party Started

Kristin Cavallari

Kristin Cavallari | Kristin Cavallari via Instagram

  • Network: UPN | Number of Seasons: 1

Do you recall back in 2006 when Ethan Erickson and Kristin Cavallari teamed up for the reality series, Get This Party Started? The premise was basic enough, the pair teamed up with A-list event planners to throw a celebration for a new person each week.

However, it was so dull that the series was canceled after two episodes. Clearly, Erickson and Cavallari aren’t David Tutera.

Next: A show that should have stayed on Twitter as a feed. 

25. $#*! My Dad Says

$#*! My Dad Says

$#*! My Dad Says | CBS

  • Network: CBS| Number of Seasons: 1

$#*! My Dad Says had all the makings of a great TV show. Based on the Twitter feed Sh*t My Dad Says, created by Justin Halpern the series starred William Shatner as Dr. Edison Milford “Ed” Goodson III an older three-time divorcee with three adult sons. CBS immediately had issues getting the right tone for the show because you can’t exactly be profane on primetime television.

Unfortunately, the show had to be tamed so much that it was a shell of its original premise by the time it hit the air. It was a lame generic sitcom with a grating laugh-track which was so old school for 2011.

Next: A police drama that was nowhere near as iconic as its setting. 

24. Hawaii

Hawaii

Hawaii | NBC

  • Network: NBC | Number of Seasons: 1

Before Hawaii-Five-O there was Hawaii. Back in 2004, NBC aired the police drama which centered on the fictional elite crime unit of the Honolulu Police Department. Unfortunately, it didn’t pack the power and punch of Law & Order. Instead,  New York Daily News said of the series, “The new cop series Hawaii isn’t your father’s Hawaii Five-O. It’s probably not yours, either, or your child’s, or anyone’s. It’s awful.”

Next: Not the “Gilmore Girls”

23. The Return of Jezebel James

The Return of Jezebel James

The Return of Jezebel James | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

When Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and actress Parker Posey teamed up for The Return of Jezebel James, things looked really promising. The series followed Parker Posey as a successful children’s book editor who is unable to have children Therefore she asks her estranged younger sister (Lauren Ambrose) to carry her baby. Unfortunately, the series was terribly miscast and didn’t have a shred of the Gilmore humor. It was canceled after just three episodes.

Next: A copy cat reality series 

22. American Inventor

American Inventor

American Inventor | ABC

  • Network: ABC | Number of Seasons: 2

Off the success of the widely loved American Idol (the original series), Simon Cowell debuted American Inventor in 2006. The series was basically what Shark Tank is today without any of the passion. From the beginning, the show seemed to be much more about the judges then the inventors and their projects. Then the show was accused of being a knock-off of the series, Million Dollar Power.

Also when season 2 winner, Firefighter Greg Chavez, won for his a fire suppression system for Christmas trees called the Guardian Angel it was panned because many felt the idea was not original and had already been seen before. With that news, the series was not renewed for a third season.

Next: Rami Maleck probably hates thinking about this show. 

21. The War At Home

The War At Home

The War At Home | Michael Becker/Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 2

In 2005, Fox debuted The War At Home which starred Rami Maleck in a sitcom about the antics of a mostly dysfunctional Long Island family. Unfortunately, as far as sitcoms go, it was a disaster. The series recycled old used up jokes and gimmicks that have been seen in every single sitcom since the beginning of TV. The characters on the show often broke the fourth wall, speaking directly to the audience which barely works in the best of times. The best thing about the series was that it gave the LGBTQ community a bit of visibility. However, after two less than stellar seasons, Fox pulled the plug.

Next: Great talent with no substance 

20. Do Not Disturb

Do Not Disturb

Do Not Disturb | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

Do Not Disturb’s concept had promise and so did it’s cast. Jerry O’Connell and Niecy Nash starred in the series. The show focused on the goings-on at a once-popular New York City hotel through the eyes of its employees. Do Not Disturb wasn’t egregious in any way it merely wasn’t very good or remarkable. Mostly the writing was just beyond lackluster.

Next: Shockingly this reality series was not billed as horror

19. Unan1mous

Unan1mous

Unan1mous | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

In the early 2000s, networks were tying out every reality TV concept they could to see what would stick. Unan1mous was not a show that would stick around. The concept itself was awful and unpleasant. Nine strangers are locked in a bunker together and they are unable to leave until they unanimously choose to award one person the grand prize money. Contestants are isolated from the outside world and have no access to any time references. If a contestant leaves the bunker, the amount of the available prize is cut in half.

Honestly, it sounded like hell on, and it was even worse to watch.

Next: A rip-off of a classic film 

18. Dirty Dancing

Dirty Dancing

Dirty Dancing | CBS

  • Network: CBS | Number of Seasons: 1

Trying to ride the wave of success of the iconic 1987 film starring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey, CBS debuted a Dirty Dancing TV show in 1988. It went about as well as you would expect. First and foremost, Swayze and Grey were nowhere to be found.  The series tried to mix it up by making Baby, Max Kellerman’s daughter, but then it regurgitated the film’s entire plot without any of the sexiness or stunning music. Obviously, it was a flop.

Next: A show of confusion 

17. Murphy’s Law

Murphy's Law

Murphy’s Law | ABC

  • Network: ABC | Number of Seasons: 1

Based on the Trace novels by Warren Murphy, Murphy’s Law followed Daedelus Patrick Murphy (George Segal), a recovering alcoholic who works as an insurance-fraud investigator for First Fidelity Insurance. He lived with girlfriend, while attempting to reconnect with his estranged daughter.

Unfortunately, the show was actually as boring as its premise when it aired in 1988. In fact, it was so bad that ABC yanked it off the air before the entire season aired.

Next:  Caricatures of men 

16. Modern Men

Modern Men

Modern Men | The WB / Scott Humbert

  • Network: The WB | Number of Seasons: 1

In 2006, The WB gave us Modern Men. The show revolved around Tim, Kyle, and Doug are childhood friends who can never get their relationships with women to work. Desperate to get things right they turn to Dr. Stangel, a renowned life coach. The series was just dull and fairly unimaginative, making the men caricatures and stereotypes instead of fully realized characters. Therefore when The WB and UPN merged to form The CW, Modern Men was trashed.

The Chicago Sun-Times summed it up eloquently by saying, “Bad sitcom, bad.”

Next: A lesson in cultural appropration  

15. Rob

Rob

Rob | CBS

  • Network: CBS | Number of Seasons: 1

In 2012, CBS delivered, Rob. Starring Rob Schneider as the title character, the series followed Rob, a life-long bachelor who marries into a tight-knit Mexican American family and attempts to bond with them. That’s about as good as it got for the series. The show was riddled with stereotypes, dull comedy, and it was clear that no one has actually asked a Mexican-American about anything.

As The Daily Beast wrote in their review, “There isn’t a single Latin name among the writers or producers and that it offers a wafer-thin appreciation and awareness of Mexican culture, one that doesn’t go beyond guacamole and the occasional use of the Spanish endearment mija (my daughter).”

Next: A cringe-worthy display 

14. Sex Box

Sex Box

Sex Box | WEtv

  • Network: WEtv | Number of Seasons: 1

Yes, you read that correctly, there was a show called Sex Box which aired on WEtv for a quick second in 2015. Based on a British TV series, the show invited several couples having relationship issues to the stage where had …sex.  While the couple was getting hot and heavy, the show’s hosts sex therapist Dr. Chris Donaghue and Pastor Dr. Yvonne Capehart commented on the act, the couple, and the chances that the couple’s relationship would survive.

After the sexy time ended, the couple sat with the hosts and answered questions about themselves and their sex life.

Honestly, Sex Box was just too much for everyone, especially religious folks and the show was given the ax.

Next: A D-list verion of “The Office”

13. Does Someone Have To Go?

Does Someone Have to Go?

Does Someone Have to Go? | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

We love our reality TV shows, but a lot of them are just ghastly. In 2013, Fox hit us with the dreadful, Does Someone Have To Go? The premise surrounded dysfunctional workplaces. On the show, employees are given complete control of the company by their bosses, allowing their staff the chance to make changes in the workplace, even if it meant firing someone.

However, no one wants to think about work when they’re at home relaxing in front of the TV, so the show as about as thrilling as watching a snail move across the room. The series made it a month before it was pulled from the air.

Next: A saga of bad acting and worse scripts 

12. Killer Instinct

Killer Instinct

Killer Instinct

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

In 2005, Fox presented us with the serial police drama Killer Instinct. The show focused on Detective Jack Hale (Johnny Messner) of the San Francisco Police Department’s Deviant Crime Unit. Abrasive and unorthodox in his strategies at work, Hale rubbed everyone the wrong way. He was also haunted by his personal demands which were further agitated when Detective Danielle Carter (Kristin Lehman) came into his life.

The show’s premise wasn’t bad. However, the series itself was an actual disaster. None of the characters were likable, the acting as dreadful, and the sexism was rampant.

Next: We are still shocked that this show got two seasons. 

11. Dr. Ken

Dr. Ken

Dr. Ken | ABC/Danny Feld

  • Network: ABC | Number of Seasons: 2

Before Ken Jeon was an actor, he was a doctor, so he created Dr. Ken based on his experience. The show follows Dr. Ken, who works at a badly-run HMO. He has a therapist wife, a brilliant but socially clueless son, and a popular and self-centered daughter. The show slithered by for two seasons, but it was positively unfunny and unremarkable. It was mostly just kind of pathetic.

Next: At least Jon Cryer suffered through this to get to “Two and a Half Men.”

10. The Trouble With Normal

The Trouble With Normal

The Trouble With Normal | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

The Trouble with Normal was a show based on therapy, but it made a mockery of the entire thing. The series focused on four paranoid young men whose fear of a conspiracy leads them to seek counseling in a therapy group run by therapist Claire Garlett.  Unfortunately, the scripts for the show were crummy, and there weren’t even any joke, so we have no idea why it was called a sitcom.

At least Jon Cryer got to redeem himself with Two and a Half Men.

Next: A disaster of nuclear proportions. 

9. Woops!

Woops!

Woops! | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

TV Guide named 1992’s Woops! the 42nd worst TV show of all time. The series followed six survivors of a nuclear holocaust living together in an abandoned farmhouse while trying to re-establish civilization. Unfortunately, the series resorted to moronic jokes and over-the-top slapstick, so it only ran up until the holiday season before getting canceled.

Luckily Fox redeemed itself with The Last Man On Earth in 2015.

Next: A dating show for man-children.

8. Momma’s Boys

Momma's Boys

Momma’s Boys | NBC

  • Network: NBC | Number of Seasons: 1

In 2008 someone told Ryan Seacrest that it would be a wise idea to get three bachelors and their mothers to move in with a group of women. Momma’s Boys was like The Bachelor on steroids but with man-children. Honestly, the entire concept was as revolting as the series. We’re really not sure who Secrest and his team expected to tune into this nonsense.

Next: A reality series based on a comedy classic 

7. The Real Wedding Crashers

The Real Wedding Crashers

The Real Wedding Crashers | NBC

  • Network: NBC | Number of Seasons: 1

We know you’re desperate for 15-minutes of fame when you team up with improvisational comics to “crash” your own wedding and shock your guests. This was basically the entire concept of NBC’s 2007 series, The Real Wedding Crashers. It was supposed to be the “real” spin-off to the 2005 film of the same name. Sadly, it was just dumb.

Next: It certainly wasn’t “The Crown.”

6. I Want To Marry Harry

I Want To Marry Harry

I Want To Marry Harry | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

First and foremost, the women on I Want To Marry Harry must have had dreadfully poor eyesight because this man looked NOTHING like Prince Harry, but that’s not the worst of it. In 2014, Fox conned 12 women into thinking they were vying for a chance for the real Prince Harry’s heart. But, they used an imposter look-alike named Matthew Hicks. It was just mostly so very creepy and odd.

We wonder if the real Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markle ever watch the show and laugh.

Next: How to offend anyone but straight men. 

5. Work It

Work It

Work It | ABC

  • Network: ABC | Number of Seasons: 1

When a show is pulled off the air after just two weeks, you know it’s terrible. The sexist disaster Work It followed unemployed friends who decide the only way to find work in the poor economic climate is to pose as women. Not only was the show insulting to the LGBTQ community who were concerned that it would trivialize the concerns of transgender people, USA Today called it, “witless, tasteless, poorly acted, abominably written, clumsily directed, hideously lit and badly costumed.”

Next: A creepy and preverted drama. 

4. Stalker

Stalker

Stalker | CBS

  • Network: CBS | Number of Seasons: 1

Stalker followed Lt. Beth Davis (Maggie Q) an expert in voyeurism, cyber harassment, and romantic fixation. Lt. Davis heads to LAPD’s Threat Assessment Unit where she works with her team to try and stop horrible situations from escalating. The procedural drama was by far one of the most disturbing things ever seen on primetime TV. It seemed exploitative, disgusting an often misogynist. It was so creepy and dark-leaning that no one could bear to watch. CBS snatched the show off the air with haste.

Next: “Mom” is better. 

3. Dads

Dads

Dads | Fox

  • Network: Fox | Number of Seasons: 1

Dads followed Warner (Giovanni Ribisi) and Eli (Seth Green), two successful video game developers whose lives are unexpectedly changed when their fathers move in with them. The show was written so lazily that writers resorted to using racist gags to try and make the audience laugh.

Mostly it was just really gross.

Next: Marvel went DC Extended Universe on this one. 

2. Marvel’s Inhumans

Inhumans

Inhumans

  • Network: ABC | Number of Seasons: 1

It pains us to say this, it really does, but sometimes even Marvel gets things wrong. Based on the comics, Marvel’s Inhumans followed the Inhuman Royal Family who escapes to Hawaii, where they must save themselves and the world. Becuase it aired on ABC, Inhumans was a family drama that was supposed to have one major conflict leading the audience through season one. Unfortunately, ABC could not deliver what Marvel gives its audiences in theaters. The Boston Herald said, “The dialogue is so poor, even Tyler Perry would wince.”

It was snatched off the air after one season as the biggest failure of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Next: A show that should have remained extinct.  

1. Cavemen

Cavemen

Cavemen | ABC

  • Network: ABC | Number of Seasons: 1

Cavemen was based on the Geico commercials that aired in 2006, so we already knew it was going nowhere. The show focuses on life in San Diego through the eyes of three cavemen: cynical Nick, laid-back Andy, and middle-man Joe. The show started off on a poor foot with a racist pilot. The remaining five episodes were just as tasteless.

Before ABC could even pull the plug, the 2007 Writer’s Strike Came and made the show extinct for us.

Follow Aramide Tinubu on Twitter @midnightrami.

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