Top 10 Teen Dramas That Were Cancelled After One Season



Top 10 Teen Dramas That Were Cancelled After One Season

VOICE OVER: Kirsten Ria Squibb WRITTEN BY: Taryn Crankshaw
They showed promise, but these teen dramas were canceled after one season. Our countdown includes "My So-Called Life," "Everything Sucks!," "The Society," and more!

Top 10 Teen Dramas That Were Canceled After One Season

Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Teen Dramas That Were Cancelled After One Season.

For this list, we’ll be looking at series that didn’t last beyond their freshman year, but that nonetheless poignantly depicted both the challenges and joys of adolescence.

In the comments, let us know what your favorite series was as a teen.

#10: “Hellcats” (2010-11)

Inspired by author Kate Torgovnick’s novel, Cheer: Inside the Secret World of College Cheerleaders, Hellcats was one of the most anticipated series of The CW’s 2010 fall lineup. Starring two Disney Channel teen icons, Phil of the Future’s Aly Michalka and High School Musical’s Ashley Tisdale, the show took viewers behind the scenes of competitive college cheerleading. With plenty of memorable choreography and dramatic storylines to match, Hellcats had all the makings of a surefire television hit. However, after only 22 episodes, the series lost its footing and tumbled right out of its Wednesday night time slot.

#9: “The Secret Circle” (2011-12)

Long before she had her own Netflix series, Girlboss, Britt Robertson was brewing potions and making magic on The CW’s The Secret Circle. The supernatural drama followed Robertson as a grief-stricken teen, Cassie Blake, who makes the startling discovery that she’s a witch after the tragic death of her mother. Based on L. J. Smith’s literary series, Circle didn’t take off quite the same way as another one of Smith’s page to screen adaptations, The Vampire Diaries. Citing budgetary issues as the reason for its downfall, the series cast its last spell in the spring of 2012.

#8: “Tower Prep” (2010)

Known mostly for its animated content, Cartoon Network’s live-action series, Tower Prep stood out from the rest during its 13 episode run in 2010. The show followed Ian Archer, an average teen who’s suddenly transported to a private school for youth with special powers. Fueled by a desire to return to his normal life, Archer bands together with a group of other students to find out the truth behind why they’re there. After only a few months, the network pulled the series and fans were left hanging with little answers and a lot of questions.

#7: “10 Things I Hate About You” (2009-10)

The rom-com that launched the careers of Julia Stiles and Heath Ledger is considered a 90s teen classic so, it seems like a no-brainer that the story would seamlessly transition from film to television. Influenced by Shakespeare’s comedy The Taming of The Shrew, the half-hour-long episodes chronicled sisters, Kat and Bianca, as they dealt with the ups and downs of high school life including dating, love, and relationships. While it was exciting to see the beloved film live on in a new medium, the series just couldn’t quite capture the magic of its source material and ultimately bid a fond farewell after its first season.

#6: “The Society” (2019)

Likened to the novel Lord of the Flies, this series featured rising star Kathryn Newton as Allie Pressman, a teen living in a small town where its residents are disappearing under mysterious circumstances. With no adult supervision, it’s up to Allie and other teens to form a new society, which becomes just about as complicated as it sounds. The Netflix series premiered in mid-2019, and even though a second season was in the works, Society became a casualty of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic and vanished right before fans’ eyes.

#5: “Everything Sucks!” (2018)

This original Netflix series certainly lived up to its name during its one-season stint on the streaming service. The storyline follows the rivalry between A/V and Drama Club members as they battle to reign supreme in an American high school during the ’90s. Covering topics such as sexuality, learning disorders and drug use, the show featured a promising young ensemble. In mid-2018 however, the series was given the boot and production closed up shop. Never shying away from exploring some of the most awkward and cringe-worthy parts of being a teen, this series proved that being sixteen can be anything but sweet.

#4: “Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionist” (2019)

There’s no denying that Pretty Little Liars is one of the most popular and talked about teen dramas of its generation. So, when it was announced that a sequel series, The Perfectionist, was in the works, it was no surprise. The Freeform series is set in the fictional school of Beacon Heights University, showing its deepest and darkest secrets, including lies and murder. The production even welcomed back PPL favorites like Janel Parrish and Kelly Rutherford. Unfortunately, the mystery drama was cut short after the series was canned along with all its secrets.

#3: “I Am Not Okay With This” (2020)

Teenhood is already tough as it is, but when you throw superpowers into the mix, that makes things slightly more complicated. Netflix’s half-hour dramedy, I Am Not Okay With This, “It” star Sophia Lillis played Sydney Novak, a teenager struggling with high school, family and newfound superpowers. Based on a graphic novel by writer Charles Forsman, the series was chock-full of dark humor, special effects and an engaging storyline, making it seem almost bulletproof. However, despite receiving mostly positive reviews the series was shelved as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic - and fans were definitely “Not Okay” with its untimely departure!

#2: “My So-Called Life” (1994-95)

There’s nothing easy about being a teen and My So-Called Life took that sentiment and ran with it. Before they were award-winning actors, Claire Danes and Jared Leto starred in the teen drama centred around angsty protagonist Angela Chase, as she navigated adolescent life in suburban Pennsylvania. The series became well known for tackling heavy issues such as alcoholism, drug use, homophobia and violence. It even earned a handful of Emmy nominations, but that wasn’t enough to keep the series on the air. After premiering in August of 1994, the show was put on the chopping block 6 months later. Although So-Called’s existence was short-lived, it’s still highly regarded as one of the best portraits of teenagehood of all time.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

“Twisted” (2013)
An Intriguing Mystery-Thriller That Was Offed Too Soon

“Star-Crossed” (2014)
This Human-Alien Love Story Had Potential, But Fate Had Other Plans

“Huge” (2010)
A Group of Teens Attends a Summer Weight Loss Camp

“Malibu Shores” (1996)
Aaron Spelling’s Soap Opera Was a Guilty Pleasure

“Teenage Bounty Hunters” (2020)
The Comedy-Drama Was a Hit with Critics, But Failed to Track Down a Larger Audience

#1: “Freaks and Geeks” (1999-2000)

It’s hard to name a one-season series that earned more critical and public acclaim than Freaks and Geeks. The series from Paul Feig and Judd Apatow launched the careers of household names such as James Franco, Linda Cardellini, Seth Rogan, Jason Segal and Busy Philipps. The story followed siblings, Lindsay and Sam, as they dealt with the politics of life as high schoolers in the early ’80s. After only 12 episodes, the series was cancelled despite the creators already having filmed 18 episodes. In the 20 plus years since the series was canned, its legacy has cultivated in cast reunions, successful syndication and a 2018 behind-the-scenes documentary. While it’s sad that the series’ life was cut short, its legacy proves that the plight of adolescence transcends generations.