One-Season Wonders 4

FIREFLY
2002-3
14 Episodes
Created by: Joss Whedon and Tim Minear

Quite rightly, Firefly has become the poster child for all TV shows cancelled before their time. The moment a new series starts wobbling in the ratings everybody cries, “The network’s gonna Firefly its ass!” Its notoriety is well-deserved, too. Most of the people reading this already know that Joss Whedon’s plucky space western managed to create an entire living, breathing universe filled with well-rounded, believable, likeable characters in its short lifespan, something many shows which have been running for years fail to manage (we’ll refrain from making the obvious Smallville gag here).

It was bold, it was daring, it was bloody good fun and it could have been classic, wonderful television… but the brave ship Serenity was unceremoniously junked before it had even had a chance to fly free. Thank heavens we got the movie so that we could dip our toes in that enticing ’Verse again – but it still didn’t beat five years of the best kind of Whedon/Minear mythmaking.

(Also – and we know it’s not sci-fi but it was very nearly fantasy – let’s spare a thought for the Nathan Fillion/Tim Minear combo Drive, too, another fine show which had its tires shot out just as it hit top speed. Jeez, Fox, are you paid by the cancellation or what?)

Go to the next one-season wonder: ODYSSEY 5