The Washington Post

Five off-the-air TV shows that don’t get enough Internet love

The core cast of TV’s “Ed.” (NBC)

Arrested Development”? Adored by the tweeting and blogging crowd. Same goes for “Family Guy,” “Friday Night Lights,” “The Wire” and any show that ever involved Joss Whedon.

For some reason, though, other well-regarded, unconventional, long-gone TV programs haven’t elicited the same level of affection, failing to generate as many memes or Tumblr posts or Pinterest boards devoted to the many magical moments they gave us.

A recent post on Vulture noted that “we as an Internet” are not spending enough time discussing the dearly departed NBC dramedy “Ed.”And that sparked me to ask during a recent Celebritology chat which defunct TV shows deserve more love from the Internet. Here’s a list of the top five based on a mix of your responses as well as my own humble opinions. Please feel free to add to that mix by posting a comment.

5. “Homefront”

It only aired for two seasons in the early 1990s, but this ABC drama about life in Ohio post-World War II was nominated for this list by a Celebritology reader who called it “GREAT!” Given that both John Slattery of “Mad Men” and Kyle Chandler of “Friday Night Lights” starred in it, it seems ripe for at least a revisit on Netflix or Hulu.

4. “Undeclared”

The genius that was Judd Apatow’s “Freaks and Geeks” has been well-established. But “Undeclared” — Apatow’s college-focused follow-up, which aired on Fox and, like “Freaks,” got cancelled after only one season — does not get mentioned online nearly enough. Just watch Jason Segel in this clip. This could and should provide us with the universally embraced GIF that will eventually surpass the prevalence of Van der Beek crying on “Dawson’s Creek.”

3. “Pushing Daisies”

“Pushing Daisies” — the very definition of a quirky TV drama — started out strong ratings-wise. But the eye-poppingly designed show about a pie maker who brings the dead to life briefly, so he can solve crimes — I said quirky, okay? — still got the axe after two seasons. There’s still some love for it, though. Creator Bryan Fuller, the man also responsible for another not-loved-enough favorite, “Wonderfalls,” said earlier this summer that there could be a “Pushing Daisies” Broadway show. But that’s far more likely to happen if we all start talking more regularly about how much we miss Ned and Chuck and Jim Dale’s charming narration and Swoosie Kurtz’s eye patch and Kristen Chenoweth bursting into a Bangles cover while wearing a pie on her head.

2. “Better Off Ted”

This was the show that, based on the aforementioned discussion, most Celebritology readers would like to see back on television. This ABC comedy about dysfunctional big-corporate America seemingly arrived at just the right economically-challenged moment. But somehow it didn’t catch on. Maybe Portia de Rossi can work on its resurrection after she finishes assisting with the revival of the Bluths?

1. “Ed”

The show that started this whole conversation is my No. 1 entry on this list. Consider the cast of this series — also filed under “quirky” — about a guy who moves back home and becomes a bowling alley lawyer: Tom Cavanagh, Julie Bowen, Michael Ian Black, John Slattery (again with the Slattery!), Justin Long, Ginnifer Goodwin ... pretty great ensemble. Yes, it leaned a little heavy on the schmaltz at times, but it was funny and good-hearted and it gave us the Warren Cheswick Experience. Who doesn’t love the Warren Cheswick Experience??? Oh, and the $10 bets. Those were the best. I still call lettuce let-toos. Why isn’t this on Netflix??

When she isn’t at a movie theater or writing about movies, Jen Chaney is ... um ... probably at home, watching a movie.


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