14 TV Shows Canceled After Just Two Episodes

'Lone Star,' 'Work It,' and 'Viva Laughlin'
Bill Matlock/Fox/Courtesy: Everett Collection, Michael Ansell/ABC/Courtesy: Everett Collection, Michael Ansell/ABC/Courtesy: Everett Collection

We previously rounded up TV shows that got canceled after one episode — remember when the now-defunct streaming platform DC Universe sent Swamp Thing back to the depths after its Season 1 premiere? — and now it’s time to reminisce about shows almost as unlucky.

The titles below, at least, survived twice as long… but, yes, they got the boot after Episode 2. From the critically-acclaimed Lone Star to the controversial Work It, here’s a selection of two-episode wonders and two-episode blunders.

Nico Tortorella and Mischa Barton in 'The Beautiful Life'
Barbara Nitke/CBS/Courtesy: Everett Collection

The Beautiful Life

The Beautiful Life, a 2009 CW drama about New York City models, was a very glamorous flop for the network, despite the star appeal of cast members like Mischa Barton, Nico Tortorella, and Corbin Bleu.

Steven Pasquale in 'Do No Harm'
Eric Liebowitz/NBC/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Do No Harm

Starring Steven Pasquale as a neurosurgeon with a Jekyll-and-Hyde problem, NBC’s Do No Harm charted the lowest-rated scripted series premiere in TV history among the Big Four networks when it debuted in 2013.

Katherine Heigl in 'Doubt'


Katherine Heigl reunited with two former Grey’s Anatomy scribes for this 2017 show, which CBS canceled after two installments. On the plus side, Heigl and costar Dulé Hill soon ended up on a more successful legal drama: Suits.

Kathleen Robertson, Chyler Leigh, and Gretchen Mol of 'Girls Club'
20th Century Fox Film Corp./Courtesy: Everett Collection

Girls Club

Fox threw the book at this 2002 David E. Kelley legal drama — starring Gretchen Mol, Kathleen Robertson, Chyler Leigh — after it got even worse ratings than its WB and UPN competition.

Hank Azaria of 'Imagine That'
Columbia TriStar Television/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Imagine That

In this 2002 NBC sitcom, a comedy writer played by Hank Azaria escapes into his daydreams when the going gets tough. The show shut down production after five episodes — amid reported behind-the-scenes issues — and only two got to air.

Adrianne Palicki and James Wolk in 'Lone Star'
Bill Matlock/Fox/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Lone Star

TV audiences must have missed or ignored the glowing reviews for this 2010 Fox series, starring James Wolk as a con man living dual lives. The first episode lost more than a two-thirds of its lead-in audience, and viewers dropped off as the hour went on.

'Lucky 7' cast members
John Medland/ABC/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Lucky 7

Lucky 7, a drama about a group of lottery winners, is one of those TV shows doomed by its title, debuting in 2013 as the lowest-rated fall drama premiere in ABC history. The characters were lucky; the cast and crew, not so much.

Janet Montgomery in 'Made in Jersey'
Jojo Whilden/Sony Pictures Television/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Made in Jersey

Made in Jersey, unmade in Hollywood. CBS dropped this 2012 legal drama — about a streetwise attorney (Janet Montgomery) trying to make it at a Manhattan law firm — after two episodes and burned off the remaining eps over the holidays.

Ray Winstone in 'Of Kings and Prophets'
Casey Crafford/ABC/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Of Kings and Prophets

ABC might have been looking for its own Game of Thrones with this 2016 drama centering on King Saul (Ray Winstone), prophet Samuel (Mohammad Bakri), and shepherd David (Olly Rix). Unfortunately, the show was a fail of Biblical proportions.

'The Paul Reiser Show' cast members
Jordin Althaus/NBC/Courtesy: Everett Collection

The Paul Reiser Show

Paul Reiser played a version of himself in this 2011 NBC sitcom about an out-of-work television actor looking for his next act. Viewers didn’t take to the show, though, and neither did critics, many of whom deemed it derivative of Curb Your Enthusiasm.

Hugh Jackman and Lloyd Owen in 'Viva Laughlin'
Robert Voets/Sony Pictures Television/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Viva Laughlin

Not even song-and-dance numbers by executive producer and recurring guest star Hugh Jackman could save this 2007 CBS musical dramedy about a casino owner (Lloyd Owen) tied up in a murder investigation.

Jerry O'Connell in 'We Are Men'
Sonja Flemming/CBS/Courtesy: Everett Collection

We Are Men

Jerry O’Connell, Tony Shalhoub, Kal Penn, and Chris Smith bro’d out in a 2013 sitcom about men bonding after the ends of their respective relationships. But CBS divorced We Are Men after two episodes.

Martin Donovan, Michelle Forbes, and Ted Levine in 'Wonderland'
ABC/Courtesy: Everett Collection


ABC nixed this 2000 drama after the second episode lost 20 million viewers from lead-in show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire — and after complaints that the story, which took place in the psych ward of a hospital, stigmatized mental illness.

Ben Koldyke and Amaury Nolasco in 'Work It'
Michael Ansell/ABC/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Work It

Another controversial two-episode series was this 2012 ABC sitcom — starring Ben Koldyke and Amaury Nolasco as blue-collar workers who cross-dress to better their job prospects — which got condemnations from both LGBT advocates and Puerto Rican protesters.