Connect with us

Viral Stories

The Best Animated Series That Got Canceled Too Soon



Cast of Clone High

It’s always a tragic thing to see a project made with much love and care be canceled before it can really take off. While there are some series lasting so long that people debate on when it could possibly end (The Simpsons), others meet the unfortunate fate of being snuffed out prematurely. Whether it be from network disputes, poor ratings, bad time slots, or all of the above, fans of animation seem to always be able to cite their own particular examples of a show that ended too soon.

In the current age of reboots and revivals, each entry on this list may not have to lay dormant forever, with certain examples already having been brought back in some form. Despite this, the sour feelings left from their initial unexpected conclusions can still tend to linger, as fans never got to see how things would’ve been had the curtain not fallen early. Here’s our picks for the best cartoons that died too young.

Download Button PNG File Download Free

Lasting only 13 episodes, 2001’s The Oblongs was an episodic comedy released on The WB, and later airing reruns through Adult Swim. The show centered around the titular family, who all were in some way mutated by the radioactive waste that they happen to be surrounded by. Though the initial pitch by creator Angus Oblong was popular enough to incite a bidding war among three networks for the rights, the show failed to garner enough viewership, and was pulled from The WB with five episodes yet to have aired.

Related: Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K. Canceled at Hulu After One Season

The show would gain relative popularity through its reruns on Adult Swim, which also aired the remaining five episodes. Charming designs paired well with the talented voice cast, sporting the likes of Will Ferrell and an excellent Pamela Adlon as main characters. Themes of family values and stark social commentaries also help the cartoon maintain a fresh voice even two decades later, leading this to be one toxic family that’s worth revisiting.

Though another episodic comedy, Dave the Barbarian was aimed more towards younger audiences, airing on the Disney Channel from 2004-2005 for a total of 21 episodes. A royal family from the Middle Ages protects their kingdom from evil while the King and Queen are away, to varied degrees of success. Fast-paced jokes featuring constant fourth wall-breaking humor made the cartoon seem almost too ahead of its time, and despite critical praise, was pulled off the air due to low ratings.

Being a more untraditional style of show than what was typically airing on the network, Dave the Barbarian often gets overlooked when fans think of the best animated series on Disney Channel during the era, though is still appreciated by those looking for something a bit more on the weird side to satisfy their Disney fix.