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A Geek, a Dysfunctional Family, and Prison Escapes: Three Shows Cancelled Too Soon

Bobby Jacowleff

It has happened to us all: Falling in love with a T.V. series, watching every episode ever recorded, and then finding out that it was cancelled too soon. After the denial subsides, you are still left befuddled as to how such a spectacular show could have been cancelled so early.

Here is Inkling’ list of the best T.V. series ever to be prematurely cancelled.

To be eligible, the series met the following criteria: having lasted fewer than 100 episodes and fewer than six seasons, and having caused viewers around the nation to burst into tears when it was canceled. Without further ado, the list:


3. Chuck, 2007-2012

Coming in just under the episode and season limit, at 91 and five respectively, we have the spy-action-comedy-drama know as Chuck.

The show revolves around Charles Bartowski, who goes by Chuck. A geek working a seemingly dead end job suddenly turns into the C.I.A.’s number one super weapon. This all happens when he mysteriously receives an email from his estranged former college roommate, an email which installed the C.I.A.’s most power super weapon into Chuck’s head, “The Intersect.”

Chuck doesn’t even realize what has happaned until C.I.A. agents Sarah Walker and John Casey capture him and explain.

The series starts with Chuck first learning his new powers as the possessor of The Intersect. The intersect is the entire C.I.A. database, and therefore Chuck can immediately recognize objects and people associated with the C.I.A.’s most wanted, as well as knowing every fighting style and strategy that the C.I.A. teaches.

As Chuck masters The Intersect, he goes on some intense missions with Sarah and Casey. Chuck does everything from disarming bombs in music halls, to jumping out of planes to pursue bad guys. As he still is a computer nerd at heart, it may not always look pretty, but that often leads to no shortage of laughs as he goofily gets the job done.

At a glance, 91 episodes may seem like a decent amount. However, in the days of shows like The Office and How I Met Your Mother lasting for 200+ episodes, 91 just was not enough for this absolute gem of a show.

2. Arrested Development, 2003-2006

Taking the number two spot on this list is the hit comedy Arrested Development. The show ending after a mere 53 episodes over 3 seasons left millions of fans all across the nation in utter disbelief.

Michael Bluth, the main character, is tasked with taking over the family business and keeping his very big and very dysfunctional family together after his dad is arrested for illegal accounting practices.

Despite how outrageously many of the characters act throughout nearly every episode, the dysfunction of the Bluth family provides a relatable theme for many viewers.

When this ill-equipped and sheltered family tries to run a big business without its leader, comedic gold ensues.  From episode to episode, the laughs keep on coming. Despite receiving a 9.2/10 from IMDB, six Emmy Awards, and one Golden Globe, Arrested Development ultimately faltered in the ratings and was unceremoniously cancelled by FOX in what is sure to be one of their most criticized decisions in the last decade.


1. Breakout Kings, 2011-2012

Spanning a mere 23 episodes over two seasons, the crime thriller, Breakout Kings tops this list.

The genre-busting Breakout Kings most closely resembles Alcatraz, Prison Break, and Criminal Minds. Then it adds its own touch that separates it from all the rest.

The premise of Breakout Kings is using criminals to catch criminals. Federal Agent Ray Zancanelli heads a special task force composed of the convicts that successfully evaded him for the longest. Together, they hunt down other felons who escape from prison each episode.

The show never gets old as each episode starts with a different prisoner making a different escape from a different prison. One episode even features the prison located in Danbury, CT and the action takes place all throughout Connecticut.

As the writers of Prison Break also wrote this show, there is a little tie-in. Terrence Bagwell, a murderer and rapist who is a main character in Prison Break, makes an appearance. As a prisoner at Fox River Prison, the location of Prison Break, Bagwell makes a daring escape to initiate an episode of Breakout Kings.

There is no worse feeling than flying through countless episodes of a recently-discontinued show on Netflix, only to discover that it had been cancelled too soon.  These three shows in particular are perhaps the biggest perpetrators of this crime to television-watching humanity. Yet these shows were great while they lasted, and we all should at least be thankful for that.





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Bobby Jacowleff
Bobby Jacowleff, Web Sports Editor
Inklings Web Sports Editor Bobby Jacowleff, ‘14 is, in a word, unstoppable. With two sports captain positions under his belt, and a demanding Inklings position, his drive and commitment alone are impressive. But more notable than Bobby’s success is his ability to fight through anything in the way of his goals. Bobby may seem nonchalant about his abilities, there’s nothing to be casual about. He is a varsity football cornerback, a captain for indoor and outdoor track, and has already been recruited for track by universities including Emory and Amherst. More importantly, his achievements haven’t come without obstacle. Jacowleff received Tommy John surgery freshman year after overuse of his arm in football caused a tendon in his elbow to displace a piece of bone. This injury failed to hinder Bobby. He soon returned to football, and when he couldn’t continue baseball, instead of just giving up, he turned to track and realized his incredible talent for it. Bobby’s perseverance and determination for success extend from the sports fields to the newsroom. He balances sports practices with the demanding duties of a web editor. His favorite article to write was on Tom Milone, the first high school student in Connecticut to be drafted. The piece required extensive investigation and direct source coverage, but again Bobby’s diligence was evident in his thorough reporting. Despite his journalistic and athletic achievements, Jacowleff’s pride is concentrated elsewhere. “I’ve never had chapped lips or a paper cut,” he proclaims proudly. “And I’ve never even tried to avoid them.”

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