Worst Network Decisions In TV History (Videos)

by Lynnette

TV And Movies

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I wasn’t Team Conan (or Team CoCo). Nor was I pro Jay Leno throughout the confusing late-night transition at NBC. I do believe it was simply “a business decision”. The networks do what’s best for the networks. So it wasn’t a matter worth taking sides over — not for me anyway.

I like late night TV talk shows, regardless of who the host is. So I’ve been a loyal fan of all them — including David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Craig Ferguson and Jimmy Kimmel. Yep, I’m a channel surfer!

Anyway… here’s a list of the worst network decisions in TV history, according to Entertainment Weekly.

It’s no secret that NBC’s late-night fiasco regarding Jay Leno and Conan O’Brien’s shows tops the list. A few others were:

[Click to see classic videos from each of the TV network shows]

  • Felicity‘s (Keri Russell) with long hair vs short hair ultimately dictated the show’s future. Once the WB decided to cut her hair on the show, the ratings dropped.
  • Letting actors leave to pursue bigger, better movie dreams results in a premature exit for the show’s main characters. – isn’t always the wisest decision. Shelley Long left Cheers to be an unsuccessful movie star. David Caruso left NYPD Blue, then took an 8-year hiatus until CSI Miami put him back in the limelight again.
  • A short-lived comedy TV series about Abraham Lincoln’s butler who told lots of slavery jokes bombed after just 3 weeks on UPN. The show (The Secret Life of Desmond Pfeifer) was cancelled because, “Memo to network executives: Slavery… Not funny!”
  • Moonlighting on ABC worked for so long because of the amazing sexual tension between the 2 lead characters. But “you can’t have sexual tension when your characters are having sex.” Once they hooked up on the show, it was all downhill from there.
  • The  Cavemen series on ABC proved that what’s funny as a 30-second Geico commercial for car insurance is not so funny when you stretch it out into a 30-minute weekly comedy series on TV.
  • FOX canceled The Family Guy twice. Then, they saw it was such a hit on DVD and in reruns, so they finally brought it back. They gave up on a good thing too soon.

Check out the Top 10 Moments From The Late-Night War (videos). The cool part: you can add your own $.02 and change the rank of each of those top 10 video moments.