Television shows that are lucky(?) enough to get their own spinoff series are guaranteed to look better by proxy when the spinoff series comes out, because let's face it- a vast majority of spinoff series are just plain awful.
Here are ten examples of how bad a television show spin off series can be:
1. The Ropers (1979-1980)-
Mr. and Mrs. Roper were pretty funny characters when interacting with Jack, Janet and Chrissy, but on their own they just didn't have the ha-has to carry an entire show. The Ropers is far from the worst show on the list, and even though it lacked the comedic chemistry found in Three's Company, it lasted for two seasons.
2. Baywatch Nights (1995-1997)-
The Hoff likes to play larger than life characters, and playing Mitch Buchannon as a lowly lifeguard simply didn't thrill him, so Mitch started moonlighting as a private investigator with his cop friend and some other detective types and Baywatch Nights was born.
Baywatch Nights tried to be so cool, so dangerous and sexy, but the lack of bikinis and hokey dialog left audiences looking for a way back to the Bay. The show slipped further down the ratings toilet when they tried to add a supernatural element to the show in season 2, but Hoff's heroic sexy detective show didn't stand a ghost of a chance.
3. The Brady Brides (1981) and The Bradys (1989-1990)-
The Brady Bunch was such a popular show that it gave birth to a whole host of spawn spin offs, and a few made-for-TV movies, one of which was called The Brady Girls Get Married, which led to the creation of the sitcom The Brady Brides.
Are you able to keep up with this winding Brady television family tree? The Brady Brides was a total flop and only lasted ten episodes, but that didn't stop producers from taking another stab at bringing back Brady eight years later.
This time around it was a mini-series called The Bradys, and it was reformatted as a drama, what with the kids all grown up and experiencing the trials and tribulations of adult life and whatnot.
It served as a reminder that much of the Brady's appeal lay in the comedic moments on the show, and drama didn't really suit them at all.
4. Joey (2004-2006)-
Everyone thought the "how you doin'" bit was funny on Friends, and Joey seemed like a loveable enough character when surrounded by the rest of the Central Perk gang, but when he was given his own show we discovered just how poorly constructed Joey's character really was.
Joey Tribbiani had a totally two dimensional personality on his own, and his whole "dumb but lovable guy trying to figure out stuff like love and relationships" routine didn't appeal to audiences, so Joey's card was pulled midway through the second season.
The Tortellis, headed by Carla's ex-husband Nick, loved to torture poor Carla to death whenever they visited Cheers, but then they took their love of torture a bit too far and landed a television show of their own. Their dysfunctional family proved every comedy show needs a straight man, because too much disfunction kinda comes off less funny and more sad...
6. Saved By The Bell: The College Years (1993-1994)-
Think Zac Morris was cool when he was runnin' the show at Bayside high? Wait until you see him fumble and flounder his way through college in a shirt that's way too big for him!
Saved By The Bell The College Years is the perfect example of why you have to let beloved TV show characters go to pasture before their appeal is completely destroyed by, say, attending a rave:
7. Joanie Loves Chachi-
Joanie and Chachi were like the whiny little siblings who never had the on-screen appeal of a Richie Cunningham or an Arthur Fonzarelli, so why would hand them their own spinoff show?
Because Happy Days was spawning spin off shows left and right, but while Garry Marshall might have gotten the spin off thing right with Laverne & Shirley, Joanie Loves Chachi was beloved by none!
8. Top of the Heap (1991)-
Before Joey was Joey he was Vinnie, who made a brief appearance on Married With Children as one of Kelly's many love interests.
Vinnie's the son of Al Bundy's old pal Charlie Verducci, who's a lot like Bundy only unwed (widowed?) and a much shadier character, and Vinnie and Charlie's exploits became the basis for a spin off show called Top Of The Heap which, as you can imagine, was a heap of something all right!
The show lasted for only seven episodes, but it did help launch Matt LeBlanc's career, as well as the career of awesome and adorable actress Joey Lauren Adams, of Chasing Amy fame.
9. Buddies (1996)-
They were two unlikely buddies from the Tool Time crew- a guy who would become one of the top grossing comedians of all time and a guy who does a mean impression of a goat, but before these buddies made good on their comedy careers they starred in a crappy Home Improvement spin off called Buddies.
Dave Chappelle and Jim Breuer definitely had comedic chemistry, which they proved in the 1998 cult classic Half Baked, but Buddies was such a bad show only 5 of the 13 episodes were ever aired.
I couldn't find a clip from the show anywhere, so here's the bit from Home Improvement that somehow led to a spin off:
10. Three's A Crowd (1984-1985)-
Last, and definitely least in terms of watchability, is Three's A Crowd, the other Three's Company spin off show that depicted Jack's struggles as a married man. Daddy doesn't like Jack, daddy tries to undermine Jack at every turn, wife is sweet and warm, hilarity ensues? Not likely!
Television producers love to make spin offs, so just imagine all the fun, and absolutely awful, spin off shows you have to look forward to in the future!
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