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Un-Canceled
The noise you are hearing is the sound of thousands of nerds cheering.note 

Peter: Everyone, I've got bad news: We've been canceled.
Lois: Oh no, Peter, how could they do that?
Peter: Well unfortunately, Lois, there's just no more room on the schedule. We've just got to accept the fact that Fox has to make room for terrific shows like Dark Angel, Titus, Undeclared, Action, That 80s Show, Wonderfalls, Fast Lane, Andy Richter Controls The Universe, Skin, Girls Club, Cracking Up, The Pitts, Firefly, Get Real, Freaky Links, Wanda At Large, Costello, The Lone Gunmen, A Minute With Stan Hooper, Normal, Ohio, Pasadena, Harsh Realm, Keen Eddie, The Street, American Embassy, Cedric The Entertainer, The Tick, Louie, and Greg the Bunny. [glances at Chris]
Lois: Is there no hope?
Peter: Well, I suppose if all those shows go down the tubes, we might have a shot.
Family Guy (taking this trope the wrong way)

That rarest of all television phenomena. A show that has been condemned to the fiery pits of cancellation is resurrected by the same executives who sought to destroy it... or different executives who want to right the wrongs of the previous ones.

Most times, this means a show is picked up by a cable channel or other network and put back into production. Very rarely, a show will be resurrected by the same network.

The biggest causes are either a campaign by fans (along with a compliant creator), or high sales in other media, such as DVD. If the show is not popular enough to warrant a whole new series but an ending is in demand by fans, then a TV movie or miniseries may be ordered to Wrap It Up.

More common is creating a Revival or Series Franchise.

If the show got enough of a notice to have a Grand Finale, being Uncanceled transforms it into a Series Fauxnale, followed by Postscript Season.

If a show is not actually canceled, but comes close before a last-minute renewal or a marginal decision to renew, that goes on Only Barely Renewed.

But if the show only got revived only for the ratings and most of the cast is not in the show, or there's too much change in budget and qualities, the revived show could go to a case of Seasonal Rot. If the show revival is made because the creators do care for the show, it can be better than the show in its pre-revival.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Animation 
  • Magyar Népmesék has been renewed several times in the 80s, 90s, and 2000s, having 89 episodes spread out over a few decades.
  • Toonami, Cartoon Network's sensational anime block launched in 1997, hit a speed bump thanks to an aggressive 4Kids-imposed Re Tool that left it in Lighter and Softer territory- and pigeonholed the fanbase. Eventually, incompetent scheduling and poor variety of shows led to its end late 2008. However, just like with Family Guy and Robot Chicken, [adult swim] struck again! On April Fools' Day 2012, they aired a loving joke broadcast of Toonami, suspiciously aimed toward an ulterior motive: test the waters to see if the block was really that cherished. A Twitter feed for viewers was added for viewers to express their interest in a possible return and the fandom proceeded to flood the feed with pleas to revive the block. Rumors the return was a hoax were dispelled when Steve Blum, voice of Toonami host TOM himself, and Kyle Hebert, a fellow voice actor with equal stature got involved. One month later, licensing deals were struck, and just like that Toonami is Back Bitches.

    Anime and Manga 
  • The InuYasha anime was canceled in 2004 after four years on the air when it was beginning to overtake the manga. Five years after, in 2009, a 26-episode follow-up series titled Inuyasha: The Final Act, was commissioned in order to adapt the remaining chapters now that the manga itself has already concluded.
  • Pantheon High was one of Tokyopop's Original English Language (OEL) manga series, and like most of their OEL, it was canceled when the US economy dipped and Tokyopop restructured. After about two years, the third and final volume was released on the Tokyopop website.
  • Slayers lasted 3 seasons in its original run, ending in 1997. A fourth season was planned, but the main cast's other commitments, along with various production issues, kept it from happening...for 11 years. Season 4 finally aired in 2008, with a fifth season arriving the following year.
  • Sailor Moon's original run in the US was cut short after only 65 episodes in its original syndicated run. After leaving syndication, it re-surfaced on USA Network, where it was once again, cancelled after failing to find an audience. However, once the show ended up on Toonami, it finally garnered itself an audience, which resulted in the show being continued with more episodes.
  • This actually happened to the English dub of Dragon Ball Z back in the late 1990s. After two seasons worth of 67 episodes in its first run, the show was cancelled in 1998 due its failure of gaining a substantial audience. When the episodes started to air on Toonami, it got much more popularity, and Funimation started dubbing new episodes in 1999.
    • Dragon Ball Kai received this treatment as well thanks the U.S. market. Despite good ratings, the lack of revenue in the merchandise caused it to be cancelled at the end of Cell Saga, meaning the Buu arc would be unfinished. However, the series proved to be so popular on Nicktoons TV and Toonzai that it led to the Buu Saga commissioned for foreign markets a year and a half later.
  • Ranma ˝ was originally canceled in Japan after only 18 episodes due to its time slot being in competition with another, more popular show. It however, continued several months later with a different time slot.
  • The Mysterious Cities of Gold is now airing its second season: 30 years after its first season finale.
  • Sonic X ended its series after 52 episodes. But after the Grand Finale, 26 more episodes were made for the North American audience. Interestingly, all 26 episodes would also have a Japanese Dub.
  • The Big O's original 13-episode run ended inconclusively. The series became so popular in America that [adult swim] helped to produce another 13 episodes three years after the original run. (That run also ended inconclusively, but Adult Swim lost interest.)
  • Lupin III (Green Jacket) had poor ratings and was cancelled, but due to popularity in reruns was later brought back as Lupin III (Red Jacket).
  • The anime adaptation of Durarara!! had a fairly satisfying ending, but still had some unresolved plot threads, and only managed to adapt the first three novels of the series. After finishing in 2010, a second season was finally announced in 2014.

    Comic Books 
  • Manhunter was originally slated to be canceled after issue #25, but fan demand convinced DC to continue for 5 more issues. After those five, it was canceled again until fan demand convinced DC to give Manhunter another chance. Then it became a backup Feature for Batman Streets of Gotham. The backup feature was cancelled after only a year.
  • Sonic the Comic (the UK one) had an uncanceling in the form of a "Head approved" fan revival.
  • The comic book Spider-Girl has been canceled and uncanceled so many times it's easy to lose track, including the latest time at issue 100 to restart again with 1 (which was far from guaranteed at the time).
  • X-Men, the comic book series, was canceled after seven years of horrible sales and no popularity (it was revived nine months later, but only published reprints of earlier issues). It was basically seen as a poor-man's version of the Fantastic Four. Then it was rebooted with all new characters like Nightcrawler, Storm, and Colossus, along with minor Hulk villain Wolverine. Under the skilled writing of Chris Claremont, it became Marvel's flagship title throughout the '80s and '90s.
  • Marvel's The Transformers was intended to be just a 4-issue mini-series but after it got positive feedback, it was made into a series, which ended with issue #80. Now IDW Publishing is wrapping up the story with a twenty-issue limited series titled '"Regeneration One''.

    Literature 
  • Liaden Universe: The first three books of the Liaden series did not sell well enough for the original publisher to want to commission sequels. Disappointed, the authors got day jobs and went on with their lives for the next several years while, unbeknownst to them, a significant Liad fandom was growing on the Internet (to the point where "When will the next Liaden book come out?" was a question in the SF fandom newsgroup's FAQ).

    When the Internet arrived in Lee & Miller's neck of Maine, they were startled to find that not only were fans clamoring for the next book, but the title of it, Plan B, had already been decided for them. With this fandom behind them, Lee & Miller were able to find a publisher to continue the series, and cranked out seven more books (as well as two collections of the short stories they continue to self-publish in chapbook form every year).

    Then the series was uncanceled again when Baen picked it up after that other publisher, Meisha Merlin, went out of business. Four more books were added to the series (though two of them had already been written as fan-funded draft manuscripts), then other sequels and prequels were contracted. To the fans' delight, the series now shows no signs of stopping.
  • The original Sherlock Holmes stories were immensely popular, but Arthur Conan Doyle was sick of writing them, so he killed Holmes off. After huge fan outcry, the publishers asked Doyle to write more. In response, Doyle named what he believed to be an impossibly large fee. The publishers paid it, and Doyle wrote more Holmes stories. (Though, to be fair, the third-and-perhaps-best-known Holmes novel The Hound of the Baskervilles, being a Whole Episode Flashback, was serialized in The Strand for a full year during the interim.)
  • R.L. Stine's Goosebumps wrapped up its original run in 1997, with the Goosebumps 2000 spin-off lasting through 2000. In 2008 Stine brought the series back as Goosebumps Horrorland, recapturing much of the original series' success and lasting until 2012. The franchise has since evolved into Goosebumps Most Wanted, which as of this writing is still going strong.
  • The Children of the Red King Series originally was to end at volume five after Charlie got his father back, but many fans begged for more three more books came out.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 24 was cancelled in 2010 with the expectations that a film adaptation would follow up the few lingering plotlines left. With the movie in development hell and the cancellation of Kiefer Sutherland's show Touch, it was announced the show would be revived as a mini-series entitled "24: Live Another Day".
    • The cancellation of Touch also freed it's creator, Tim Kring, to work on the revival of Heroes.
  • When 7th Heaven was canceled after 10 seasons, its final episode got such unexpectedly stellar ratings the CW network decided to revive it for one more season, unfortunately it wasn't too well-received by most and the ratings plummeted.
  • One of the shortest uncancellation cycles on record belongs to America's Most Wanted. In 1996, Fox canceled the series even though it was still one of the fledgling network's highest-rated shows, as Fox attempted to establish a Saturday night comedy block to take advantage of NBC's dwindling dominance of the evening. After then-FBI director Louis Freeh, police departments across the country, the governors of 37 states and more than 200,000 letter-writers complained about the decision, Fox hastily reinstated the series, and it suffered only a six-week hiatus. It also kind of helped that the new sitcoms bombed badly and that Fox realized Married... with Children and Martin should have never been moved to Saturday night in the first place. In 2011, the show was reduced to a series of quarterly specials on Fox, as well as regular showings on Lifetime TV, but it chugged along until 2013.
  • Are You Afraid of the Dark? was cancelled in 1996, then renewed for one more season in 1999 with an all-new cast.
  • Arrested Development was canceled in 2006 after 3 seasons, and ended on a massive cliffhanger. After years of movie rumors, it was announced in late 2011 that not only was the movie going to be done, but that a fourth season would be funded and released in May 2013 by Netflix.
  • Babylon 5 was canceled by PTEN one year short of its 5 year arc. They wrapped it up as best they could by the end of Season 4, but then had to create a whole new story arc when they were picked up for a final season by TNT.
  • BattleBots was canceled in 2002 after five seasons on Comedy Central, but got brought back by CBS College Sports in December of 2009.
  • Baywatch was originally an NBC TV (or should we say T&A) series which was canceled. David Hasselhoff, the show's star, arranged to buy the rights to the show and have it continue as a syndicated TV show, where it was very successful.
  • CBS ended Beakman's World after getting 65 episodes in the can (the standard number of episodes needed before a series could go into syndication back then). An outpouring of fan support convinced them to give it one more season. The comeback was so late it resulted in an assistant change.
  • The Australian version of Big Brother ran from 2001-2008 before it was suddenly cancelled. Four years later, it was just as suddenly given a revival on a rival network. The same thing happened with the British version.
  • Apparently the first anyone working on Blake's 7 knew of the fourth series was when it was announced at the end of the last episode of the third. The BBC's Director of Television, Bill Cotton, was enjoying the episode so much he phoned the transmission staff mid-episode and told them to announce that the show was returning.
  • Breaking In was initially cancelled by FOX in 2011, then it was unexpectedly un-cancelled and re-tooled in 2012, only to end up cancelled once again.
  • Cagney & Lacey was canceled by CBS in 1983, after two seasons. A letter-writing campaign persuaded the network to bring the show back; four more full seasons aired, plus four (!) Made For TV Movies in the mid-1990s. Thus, unlike many of the shows on this list, its post-uncancelation run was much longer than its pre-cancellation run.
  • Charles In Charge was brought back in syndication.
  • ABC cancelled Cougar Town during its 3rd season. Shortly afterwards, TBS picked up the series.
  • After an incredible 10 years, ABC greenlighted the return of Cupid. It was described as a reimagining, suffered the same fate as the original, and quickly faded away.
  • F/X canceled Damages during its third season. The show's producers took the show over to Direc TV, who picked it up for two more seasons.
  • By 1985, British sci-fi institution Doctor Who had weathered Moral Guardians, inflation, and lackluster scripts... but when a new BBC controller who had never liked the show came in, its number was up. The resultant outcry made the newspapers and talk shows, and 18 months later, it returned; unfortunately, the ratings started to slip after it was put in a time slot against popular Soap Opera Coronation Street, and in 1989, it was cancelled once again. It wouldn't return as an ongoing TV series until 2005. It has since become one of the most successful works of fiction on British television.
  • A&E suspended Dog The Bounty Hunter several times due to incidents involving the Chapmans, but always mad it back on the air with new seasons due to fan outcry and closed-door negotiations. It finally ended its run in 2012, though CMT then picked up a new version for 2013 in which Dog travels around fixing up failing bail bond agencies in a style similar to Kitchen Nightmares.
  • Due South, multiple times. The show was originally cancelled by CBS after its first season. It was then renewed, and "Letting Go" was filmed to keep the fans from wondering what happened after the finale. It was cancelled again at the end of Season 2, with the production company going as far as taking down the sets. A group of Canadian production companies banded together to fund the show, and it returned for two more seasons. Callum Keith Rennie also replaced David Marciano as Ray Vecchio (because Marciano had already moved his family after the apparent cancellation and didn't want to move back).
  • Fame was brought back in syndication.
  • The beloved 1950s family sitcom Father Knows Best was cancelled by CBS after its first season. A letter writing campaign got the show picked up by NBC the following fall.
  • NBC cancelled For Your Love after one season, then it was picked up by the WB for another 4 seasons.
  • Game Shows, in spades.
    • In 1973, CBS canceled the first of the series, The $10,000 Pyramid, after a season. Six weeks later it was snapped up by ABC, where it ran for six years.
    • CBS canceled The $25,000 Pyramid in December 1987 and replaced it with a game show called Blackout. When that show tanked, $25,000 came back from April to July 1988 but only as a stop-gap measure until the revival of Family Feud was ready.
    • The Singing Bee aired for one season on NBC before it was canceled. The show was brought back in 2009 on CMT with a new host (Melissa Peterman over Joey Fatone) but mostly the same format — albeit skewed toward the network's Country Music audiences.
    • PAX had a game show called On the Cover which aired two episodes in May 2004 before getting yanked. It returned in slightly Re Tooled format in September but was re-canceled by year's end.
    • The game show Shop 'Til You Drop aired on Lifetime from 1991-94 before it was canceled. It returned on Family Channel from 1996 to 1998 and got canceled again. Then it moved to PAX, which aired a new version from 2000-02 and got a retool from 2003-05.
    • GSN ran Lingo for five seasons (2002-07), itself a revival of a short-lived 1980s game show. And it's come back in 2011 with a Hotter and Sexier format and Bill Engvall hosting - a revival that was also canceled after one series.
      • After having good results with re-runs in 2012, GSN is also reviving Minute to Win It.
    • Incredibly, this happened with Wheel of Fortune in its early days on NBC daytime. NBC president and CEO Fred Silverman made two attempts to cancel the show in 1980. The first was to make room for a failed talk show hosted by David Letterman, but was never followed through; the second was to make room for a spinoff of Another World called Texas and was actually followed through to the point that several staff members (including announcer Charlie O'Donnell) left and a series finale was taped. Thankfully however, Silverman was later ousted due to green lighting one too many programming failures on NBC's prime time lineup (and for almost bankrupting the network after spending a ton of money to produce a whopping 150 hours of coverage for the 1980 Moscow Summer Olympics, only to end up cancelling said programming after President Jimmy Carter pulled the U.S. team out of the event in response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan). His replacement, Grant Tinker, reversed the cancellation decision, cutting Letterman's show to an hour, and the show managed to progress unharmed. Amusingly, Tinker previously worked at NBC as a network assistant during the mid-1960's, and, in fact, had convinced Mort Werner, NBC's then senior vice president for programming and talent, to green light Wheel creator Merv Griffin's other most well known creation, Jeopardy! Wheel would only gain in popularity come the 1980s, especially once Pat Sajak and Vanna White took over and the (still running) nighttime syndicated version began in 1983.
      • And then it struck daytime again. Pat Sajak left daytime in January 1989 to host a talk show for CBS, and while the out-of-his-element Rolf Benirschke did the last six months of that run, NBC and Griffin simply could not come to a license agreement due to The Price Is Right adding viewers while Wheel remained steady. NBC announced the show's end in mid-May, only for CBS to renew it the next day; Bob Goen was chosen as host on July 7, a week after Rolf's last show. The show's subsequent ratings never approached that of the NBC era, even after hopping back there in January 1991.
    • The original Match Game (1962-69) was on NBC's chopping block after 13 weeks, until writer Dick DeBartolo suggested to Mark Goodson that they spice up some of the questions. He approved (given they were already cancelled), viewers picked up on it, and NBC spared it.
    • NBC uncanceled Fear Factor (of all things), years after the network ran it into the ground with constant celebrity editions. The revival aired briefly in the 2011-12 series before being re-canceled.
    • Nickelodeon's 90's game show Figure it Out. Aired 1997 to 1999, with Olympic medalist Summer Sanders as the host, and then revived in 2012 with host Jeff Sutphen, with a new gallery of panelists from Nickelodeon's contemporary live-action shows.
    • Tattletales, which ran from 1974 to 1978 on CBS, was brought back by the network in 1982 after a series of 4 PM shows failed to click. It ran a year and a half more.
  • The Game, after two years worth of outcry and a move to BET. It's proven to be one of the most successful examples of this trope. Not only did the show's re-runs on BET get better ratings than the CW's first airings, the season 4 premier got 7.7 million viewers, which was a first for a serialized drama/comedy on cable. All the more impressive, considering what network The Game came from (CW) and where it went (BET).
  • NBC dropped Get Smart after four seasons, only to have CBS pick it up for a fifth.
  • FOX cancelled Grounded For Life after one season, then picked up by the WB for four more seasons.
  • MTV's Headbanger's Ball was finally brought back in 2003 after the original show was cancelled almost a decade earlier.
  • Hee Haw had a 20 year syndicated run after a brief 2 year run on CBS.
  • JAG. started life on NBC for one season, before being canceled and immediately snapped up by CBS, where it ran for nine more seasons, and eventually spawned the NCIS franchise.
  • The cancellation of Jericho in 2007 lead to a strange campaign where fans sent nuts to the network to persuade it to reverse the decision. The network eventually announced a further seven episodes would be produced and "please stop sending us nuts". The nuts were later given to charity. Or used as part of a contest on Big Brother.
  • In late 2012, AMC announced that The Killing had been cancelled. Thanks to a deal with Netflix, they announced its return in 2013.
  • Lassie was brought back for syndicated seasons.
  • Reality show Last Comic Standing seems to only survive in 3 season blocks. It ran its first 3 seasons, then got canceled. Then it came back and ran for 3 more seasons, and then got canceled. Now it's back again. Make up your minds!
  • Mamas Family: Canceled by NBC in 1984 after only two seasons, it was brought back in 1986 in first-run syndication, lasting for four more seasons. (Thankfully, as most fans seem to enjoy the syndicated seasons more.)
  • Medium was canceled by NBC in the 08-09 season, and then picked up by CBS.
  • MI High finished the main Story Arc and was cancelled. The BBC decided on a reboot and a sixth series will air in 2013 (albeit with some changes to the formula - St. Hopes is gone and there are now four spies instead of three).
  • ABC's reality show The Mole became this when it returned to ABC in the summer of 2008 in its original format.
  • Comedy Central canceled Mystery Science Theater 3000 after a seven-year run, but was shopped around; fans lobbied to other networks to bring the show back, even to the extent of buying a full-page ad in Variety bemoaning the loss. It was brought back on the Sci-Fi Channel. Three years later, it was canceled again, though it has two Spiritual Successors: Cinematic Titanic and Rifftrax.
  • New Amsterdam, about an immortal detective, was canceled by Fox before the first episode even aired. However, they ended up airing it due to the WGA strike and it got a fairly good response. But it is Fox, so they rendered the show gone just the same.
  • ABC originally cancelled The Odd Couple at the end of its first season. Strong ratings for repeats that aired over the summer of 1970 convinced them to bring the show back, and it lasted for a further four seasons.
  • Police, Camera, Action!: Uncanceled in 2002, then 2007, and then 2008, and again in 2010!
  • Power Rangers has been canceled numerous times:
    • When Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers was first aired in 1993 the network executives of Fox had so little insight and faith in the show's potential that the show was only expected to last, at best, for one season. So before the show even began, it was prescheduled for cancellation after it had completed its one season of 40 episodes. Due to the show's unforeseen popularity, however, what was supposed to be the grand finale was edited last minute into a standard multi-part episode to leave the show open ended for continuation. Fox ordered an additional 20 episodes, using new Toei footage and costumes bought exclusively for Power Rangers by Saban (having exhausted the Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger footage), for the first season. At the same time Saban also secured the rights to more Super Sentai series for future seasons of the show.
    • In 1998, after a significant continual decline in viewers following the Power Rangers Zeo and Power Rangers Turbo seasons, Power Rangers in Space was initially meant to wrap up the show as a whole as it was to be canceled. However, due to that season's space travel theme and Grand Finale of six seasons worth of stories, the audience interest was increased enough that it was renewed for the postscript Power Rangers Lost Galaxy season. This would become the lead way into the show's restructuring of seasons to mirror a Series Franchise, similar to Super Sentai.
    • In 2002 Disney, after having completed Power Rangers Wild Force out of obligation to Bandai and Toei (having obtained the show already in production from Saban as part of a buyout), decided to cancel the show due to production cost. The cancellation only lasted about two weeks however, when producers Douglas Sloan and Ann Austen, who had formerly worked for Saban, convinced Disney to move production to New Zealand for one-third the Los Angeles production cost.
    • The show was canceled again in 2008 following Power Rangers Jungle Fury due to a continued decline in viewers, Disney's perceived apathy to being associated with a show it didn't quite understand and a perceived overall staleness in the show's format following Bruce Kalish's tenure as executive producer. The cancellation only lasted until European investment and pressure from Bandai forced a seventeenth season.
    • That seventeeth season, Power Rangers RPM, ended in December 2009, after production problems and a mid-season staff shake-up struck it. Saban, now reformed as a new umbrella venture named Saban Brands, has bought the series back from Disney and brought the next season, Power Rangers Samurai, to Nickelodeon.
  • Primeval was canceled in 2009 only to be revived in 2011.
  • Subverted with Raumschiff GameStar: After it officially ended in the fifth season with a Kill 'em All, nothing was heard about it for five years. Then in 2009, the producers announced a new season and even released a trailer for it. However, half a year later, it was revealed to be a case of Real Trailer, Fake Movie, and the third season of RSGS's Spiritual Successor started publishing instead.
  • In 1999, Red Dwarf ended on a cliffhanger. Co-creator and head writer Doug Naylor attempted for some time to get a movie off the ground, but in 2001 approached the BBC about to make a new series and the BBC replied with the comment "we are no longer interested in the audience Red Dwarf used to provide". The show eventually returned on cable channel Dave in 2009 with a 3-part adventure and was a massive ratings success for the channel, even beating the original channel that Red Dwarf used to air on in the rating (BBC2), a bout of hilarious irony on the BBC. A new series had been announced and aired in Autumn 2012.
  • Ripper Street was cancelled after two series, largely because it was so expensive to make. Then Amazon stepped in with extra funding and a third series is in the pipeline.
  • Roswell has both cases. It was -apparently- first canceled by the WB on the first season, which promoted the fans to launch a "Tabasco" campaign, in which they managed to send 6,000 bottles of Tabasco to the executives. On the second season, the show was canceled again, even if the fans did send 12,000 Tabasco bottles. UPN picked it up for a third season, after which it was canceled for good.
  • The 2007-2008 season of Scrubs was supposed to be the last but, due to the Writer's Strike, the show didn't exactly end in a satisfying fashion. It moved to ABC.
  • Sledge Hammer! was canceled after the 1st season, only to be renewed for a second season after the last episode got higher than expected ratings, which created something of a dilemma for the writers. Expecting to be cancelled after the first season, the season finale featured Los Angeles as well as the titular character being vaporized by an nuclear bomb. They got around this by claiming at the start of the second season that the first-season finale was five years in the future, giving themselves room to run the series for another five seasons. Naturally, the show was cancelled soon thereafter.
  • NBC canceled Southland to make room for Jay Leno's prime time show, but was saved by TNT.
  • Showtime canceled Stargate SG-1 after the fifth season, and was then picked up by Sci-Fi. And was canceled again after the tenth season, with the fanbase split between those who wanted it to continue and those who wanted it to happen two seasons earlier. MGM decided to just go direct-to-DVD this time around.
  • ABC axed Taxi, but it jumped to NBC and lasted for another season, before dwindling ratings finally took it down.
  • After ten years of nothing but repeats and some unaired material, Whose Line Is It Anyway? is coming back. And There Was Much Rejoicing.
  • Unforgettable is the rare example of a show that did well in the ratings, but not well enough for CBS's ratings standards. It was killed at the end of its first season, but was renewed for a summer run on CBS for its second season because of TNT and Lifetime looking to snap it up. It did well enough as a summer show that it was renewed for a third season.
  • Young Dracula was canceled, therefore leaving it at a cliffhanger in Season 2. A couple years later (thanks to fan-led petitions and general interest), The third season ended up premiering on the 31st of October 2011, and a fourth season has been advertised on CBBC.
  • CNN had the show Crossfire, which was a "nuanced debate show" where two pundits would sit apart from a guest and go off on them near-relentlessly. Then Jon Stewart was on and left the show a smoldering ruin, utterly broken down for the vapidness that it was. The show would be canceled within weeks. And it was announced it was coming back in early 2014...much to Jon's chagrin.

     Music 
  • Roger Waters took complete control over Pink Floyd in the early 1980s, releasing the album The Final Cut as finale. In 1985 he left the group and declared it dissolved. When the remaining members still wanted to continue he took them to court. Finally, in 1987 an agreement was made that allowed Gilmour and Mason to continue using the name: Pink Floyd was uncancelled.

     Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000 managed to crank even this trope (like every other trope it involves) Up to Eleven: the Dark Heresy spinoff game was released, canceled and Un Canceled within the space of a month. The game, which fans had been looking forward to for decades, comes out. The entire print run sells out in two days. A few days after that, Games Workshop says it's getting out of roleplaying games, because literature is easier to publish for profit. Once the gnashing of teeth ties down, Fantasy Flight Games picks up the license. This had the secondary effect of visiting Laser-Guided Karma upon the profiteers who had, on announcement of the cancellation, bought up every copy they could in the hope of selling them for silly money on eBay. This also had something of a longer-term effect, where several veteran designers and writers at Games Workshop left the company in the late oughts, only to contribute to Fantasy Flight Games, who currently publish all of the Games Workshop-licensed Tabletop RPGs.
  • White Wolf, having cancelled the Old World of Darkness in 2004, began creating new material for it again in 2011 with the 20th anniversary editions.

     Video Games 
  • In a rare video game example see Golden Sun. Originally one game split in two (released in 2001 and 2003, respectively) due to length, it received acclaim and developed quite the following, and even though the second game technically wrapped the story up, many believed there was enough loose threads to make a sequel. According to Word of God, the first two games were just the prequel games. Dark Dawn starts the series proper.
  • The Mega Man X series infamously returned, but no one realized it had ever been canceled at first, until years later when it was revealed in interviews, which led to the fans giving a collective "oooooooh" as to the changes that had occurred from X6-X8.
  • The Mega Man (Classic) series. Its last numbered installment was Mega Man 8 (which came out in 1996/1997). Not counting Mega Man & Bass (a 2003 Game Boy Advance port of a 1998 Japan-only Super Famicom and WonderSwan game), it took over a decade for Keiji Inafune to bring a ninth entry to the series, which was presented as an homage to the golden days of gaming. It was followed two years later in 2010 by 10.
  • With franchise creator Keiji Inafune at the helm, the fan-favorite Mega Man Legends series had been revived after ten long years of silence...and then the Legends 3 project got cancelled, which caused Inafune to leave Capcom, and left the series right back at its previous status.
  • Capcom could be called the "Kings of Uncancelling". For the longest time Street Fighter was considered to be a dead series by the company (outside of re-releases and crossovers). Then, after years of clamor from fans, Capcom makes an announcement and hell freezes over for Street Fighter IV.
  • In the same vein as Street Fighter, the possibility of a new Marvel vs. Capcom being made was considered nil because Capcom no longer had the license to make the games. Then in 2009 they got a deal to re-release Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age Of Heroes for download (minus the in-game shop, instead having everything unlocked at the outset, which was Completely Missing the Point) and, about a year later, they announced Marvel vs. Capcom 3. The Devil's heating bill must be off the charts.
  • Duke Nukem Forever. After years and years of basically being Vaporware, it was then canceled...only to be picked back up by Gearbox a few months later. And then it finally got released. There's a lesson here. And it is this: Always, ALWAYS bet on Duke.
  • APB: All Points Bulletin appears to have been saved. It's even going free-to-play this time, though it's too early to determine how much of an Allegedly Free Game with Bribing Your Way to Victory it'll end up as/with.
  • Dragon Warrior went on a very extended hiatus in North America after Dragon Warrior IV was released in 1992. Enix apparently had intentions to localize one of the next two games on the SNES, but these efforts died when they closed their American branch in the mid 1990s. The series was resurrected eight years later when Enix brought over a Gameboy Color compilation of the first two Dragon Quest games, but the release of Dragon Quest VII the year after really cemented the uncancellation of the series in America.
    • Then plans for bringing the Dragon Quest IV remake to the U.S. were scrapped when the original development studio shut down. It took seven years and the Square-Enix merger before the U.S. finally saw the PS1 version's bonus content on the DS.
  • In a similar vein, Final Fantasy 2, 3, and 5 didn't get released in the U.S. until after 7 became a smash hit. 4 and 6 got released as 2 and 3 respectively on their original NA NES versions. 3 didn't even get localized until decades later with the arrival of the Nintendo DS.
  • Metal Gear Solid: Rising wound up being cancelled in 2010 when development ground to a halt. Thankfully, Platinum Games stepped in to help get the game finished, which they succeeded in doing, releasing the game in 2013 as Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance.
  • Largely unaware to western audiences, the Glory of Heracles series was popular in Japan, with its fourth game last made in 1994. The series then gained a 5th chapter in 2008 (2010 to western markets, and also the only one localized outside of Japan). One advantage of the series is that the games are largely self-contained, with minimal continuity spanning the various games.
  • Due to already having their hands full with then-upcoming titles Deathspank and Swarm, Hothead Games was forced to cancel the third and final episode of Penny Arcade Adventures, leaving it as a written story on the Penny Arcade website. Then, in August 2011, Zeboyd Games (creators of Breath of Death VII and Cthulhu Saves the World) announced that they have taken up the mantle, and they're even going to make a fourth episode too, which will show us how the Precipice universe ties in with the standard Penny Arcade universe.
  • Pikmin was remade on Wii, with the remakes coming out in 2008 in Japan and 2009 in the rest of the world. Pikmin 2 was planned to get the same treatment, and the remake for it came out in Japan, Australia, and Europe in spring of 2009, with the American version never getting a release other than vague hints like "Q2". It was quietly cancelled. In 2012, the American version was surprisingly uncancelled and released that June - just over three years after the Australian rerelease hit store shelves (and even then, it was released under the Nintendo Selects label...which is usually only used for budget re-releases).
  • La Mulana for Wiiware outside of Japan fits this trope.
  • Word has it that Bayonetta 2 was originally canned by SEGA. Then on September 13th, 2012, the game was announced to not only be on the Wii U, but to also be published by Nintendo (who were the only company willing to fund the game). Needless to say, this didn't sit well with some gamers.
  • Asherons Call 2 was revived by Turbine during Holiday 2012.
  • The creator of the original Nexus War pulled the plug in a Grand Finale, but the series was quickly brought back to life by Nexus Clash, a fan-created Spiritual Successor.

    Web Comics 
  • Several days after John Troutman announced that he was pulling the plug on Lit Brick, a ton of fans came out of the wood work to bemoan the loss, convincing him to do regular updates again. Amusingly, this came after he took the trouble to draw comics detailing what happened to nearly every main character in the series, and finished with an epic goodbye to his readers.

    Web Originals 
  • Bonus Stage Lasted 87 episodes, cancelled via Creator Backlash and financial woes and it would ultimately be passed down to a guy on deviantART five years down the road.
  • The Nostalgia Critic was retired in September 2012, after both a final episode and a Fully Absorbed Finale in To Boldly Flee, as his actor thought the character had ran its course. In January 2013, his return was announced with The Review Must Go On, with the catalyst being a somewhat obscure movie. Walker also announced a few changes (in-character); namely, that the length of time between episodes would increase, and that there was no longer a "cutoff date" for what movies the Critic would review (he previously only reviewed material from the 1980's and 1990's, although he later did a few movies from the early 2000's as well). The show also started having more sketches, with the actors who worked on the show Walker did in his break from the Critic.
  • YouTube critic and ranter Benthelooney, eventually cancelled/ended his rants after the third part of his "Nick Rants" series. However, his other collections of videos were so successful, and things have angered Ben so much, that he decided to surprise his fans, by reviving/uncancelling his Rants series on February 10th of 2012 with Ben Rants: Celebrities
  • Copper Cab's videos were almost done for, when his channel got hacked by someone that he had known in real life that got annoyed by his supposed arrogance. However, Copper Cab fought for the rights back to his channel and succeeded by only dying his hair and doing a dance/rap video, and uncancelled his videos from that moment on, ever since.
  • The Massive Multi-Fandom RPG: Season 3 of the roleplay ended abruptly once the GMs began experiencing burnout, and all seemed to indicate that this was the end of the story, especially since the GMs began to consider all of the roleplay one huge pile of Old Shame. A couple of months later, however, season 3.5 was started again as an attempt to conclude the story, with a different, simpler premise that doesn't demand as much from the players.

    Western Animation 
  • Celebrity Deathmatch. Just lasted two seasons, though, and the episodes that aired weren't very good.
  • Dexter's Laboratory lasted two seasons until 1998, and three years later returned. But the two seasons that followed are often hated because they lacked input from series creator Genndy Tartakovsky (who was busy with Samurai Jack and Star Wars: Clone Wars), had a change in artwork, had different writers, and had replacement voice actors (especially with Dexter. Christine Cavanaugh retired from voice acting after a custody battle with her husband and Candi Milo was called in as her replacement).
  • Drawn Together
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy was originally going to be canceled after the episode Take This Ed and Shove It. It was renewed for two more seasons and was then set to end with A Fistful of Ed, which was said to be the final episode. Then it got a few more episodes and finally ended with The Ed, Edd, and Eddy Big Picture Movie.
  • The Fairly Oddparents was set to end after The Jimmy Timmy Power Hour 3, but after lots of fan protests and the show continuing to get great ratings, Nick changed their minds and renewed it.
  • Family Guy is most likely the Trope Codifier, as uncancellations have become more common since then. Brought back by FOX after a long hiatus once DVD sales took off and reruns on [adult swim] brought in better ratings than what it had on FOX, who realized exactly how much money they stood to make off the most popular cartoon since South Park. What's especially notable here is how in the returning series premiere, Peter recited an excruciatingly long list of FOX shows that Family Guy was canceled to make room for but were themselves inevitably, if not always abruptly and swiftly, canned (see the page quote for all the shows that tried and failed at replacing Family Guy).
  • South Park managed to be preemptively uncancelled in its first season. Trey Parker and Matt Stone had little idea the show would even draw mediocre ratings (let alone become a massive cultural phenomenon), so they produced the first six episodes with the assumption that it would be cancelled after about five or six months, while putting the bulk of their focus on the movie BASEketball. Once South Park unexpectedly became Comedy Central's highest rated show and a hit among pretty much everybody from high schoolers to big name celebrities like Jerry Seinfeld, Parker and Stone immediately reconsidered their plans. So they quickly created four holiday-themed episodes ("Pink Eye", "Starvin' Marvin", "Damien"note  and "Mr. Hankey, The Christmas Poo") to tide fans over. They then created three more episodes to round out Season 1 and establish South Park as a full-fledged series.
  • Futurama:
    • The series not only got four made-for-DVD movies years after its original Fox run was over (which were made possible in part by the impressive ratings the reruns pulled in on Adult Swim), but got renewed in 2009 on Comedy Central — then it ended in 2013. While the final episode (in which Fry and Leela finally get married) has the feel that the show's over and it's never coming back (save for some cheap mentions on The Simpsons, which doesn't seem like it will end anytime soon), Matt Groening is trying to shop it around to other networks. It's then played for hilarity in the opener of "Bender's Big Score".
    The Professor: Good news, everyone! Those asinine morons who cancelled us were themselves fired for incompetence!
    [The crew cheer loudly]
    The Professor: And not just fired, but beaten up too! And pretty badly.
    [The crew cheer much less enthusiastically]
    The Professor: In fact, most of them died from their injuries!
    [The crew are visibly uncomfortable, except for Bender, who laughs]
    The Professor: And then they were ground up into a fine pink powder!
    Fry: Why?
    • And even before all 26 episodes had aired, the show was renewed for another new season. The tagline from the first DVD movie fits the series in more ways than one. The opening Subtitle even lampshades it by saying IT JUST WON'T STAY DEAD! (As pictured above)
  • The Jetsons and Jonny Quest, two Hanna-Barbera shows that ran for one season each in the 1960s, were both revived with new episodes produced for syndication in the 1980s. Boomerang does not show these episodes as often; the consensus is that they are of much lower quality than the original runs.
    • Teletoon Retro in Canada does air the 1980s Jetsons (as well as the originals), and the difference in quality is very evident.
    • H-B did the same with Yogi Bear in 1988, using the background music from the original 1961 shorts and introducing a new character, Ranger Rubideux.
  • Johnny Bravo lasted one season in 1997, and in its uncancellation two years later (minus creator Van Partible) is often considered better, but not by people that liked the first season. Then it was uncanceled again in 2004, with Van Partible back at the helm.
  • Kim Possible: Its network is also its producer and copyright holder, so it had to be them. The fans made a lot of noise, and for once the suits listened.
  • Robot Chicken did a sketch where the show was supposedly canceled and then uncanceled after creators Seth Green (yes, him again) and Matt Senreich repented to Cartoon Network's execs; in reality, the show was hugely popular and there was no question that it was green-lit for another season.
    • It's since become a running joke that Robot Chicken gets "canceled" at the end of every season and "renewed" at the beginning of the next. Even if it means they have to get Seth MacFarlane to help them.
      "Wow, Seth MacFarlane, you can do anything!"
  • KaBlam! was going to end with three seasons, wrapping season three up with June giving Henry a kiss, and them becoming an official couple. Fans made noise, and a fourth season was created (to the annoyance of some fans, Henry and June's relationship was set back to being "just friends" (for a little while)). A fifth season was on the way, but Nick cancelled it before it began.
  • Pingu was originally canceled after Season 4 in 1998, due to the network's disappointing results from the ratings. Three years after HIT Entertainment bought the rights to the series, it was revived for two additional seasons before being canceled again in 2005.
  • After ending in 2007, a new season of Code Lyoko was announced for release in 2013 under a different title, shown only in France.
  • Very poor ratings on its series premiere caused UPN to axe Home Movies before it was able to even finish its first season. In 2001, one [adult swim] executive said he liked Home Movies, and [adult swim] later revived the series, airing the unaired UPN episodes and ordering three more seasons.
  • Briefly, the idea of bringing back Invader Zim was thrown around for a while, but in the end, it didn't stick because there wasn't enough money. So they settled with bringing old episodes of the show back onto Nicktoons Network instead.
  • Beavis And Butthead, a show cancelled back in 1997 (after Mike Judge decided to spend some time on other projects, like King of the Hill), got revived in October 2011. Then, it disappeared again.
  • After being cancelled back in 2006, Xiaolin Showdown received a reboot, Xiaolin Chronicles, in 2013.
  • In general, Nickelodeon (with both live-action and animated shows) and Cartoon Networknote  have been notoriously bad about this in recent years. At any time, new episodes can just abruptly stop for no reason whatsoever, with no new episodes airing for weeks, even months at a time. In some cases, there will even be a new show airing in that same timeslot, with no indication of reruns in other timeslots (although airing a show in a "death slot" means that a show has been virtually cancelled, even if it isn't exactly official).note  As a result, cancellations and uncancellations are much more likely to happen on these networks (compared to others).
  • SpongeBob first came out in 1999, and it was meant to end with the movie, which was released in 2004. However, when Nick saw that the movie did so well in theatres, they tried to talk Stephen Hillenburg into reviving the show, but Stephen refused to, so they hired Paul Tibbitt to make the new episodes and the show was Un-Cancelled, and still airs to this day.
  • ReBoot aired two seasons between 1994-1996 and was canceled by ABC because of the Disney buyout. They even had a sly dig at them in the final episode of the second season by calling the enemy vehicles Armored Binome Carriers (ABC's). "The ABC's, they turned on us!" "Treacherous dogs!" But the show was co-financed by YTV in Canada so they managed a decent Syndication deal and eventually produced a third season in 1998 that wrapped up the major plots and gave a happy ending to the characters (although left hints towards a new story arc). After being picked up by Cartoon Network and doing well in the ratings, they helped finance a fourth season in 2001 that resolved prior issues and ended on a Cliffhanger which had to be resolved in comic book form. There are continuing rumors of a revival still. The rumors were confirmed in October 2013 when it was announced that a new series was being developed, although this will be more of a reboot.
  • American Dad! announced that after the 2013-2014 season (season nine), the show will end so the channel can renovate its Sunday night line-up (which may or may not be the end for The Simpsons, since that show got a syndication deal to air on cable TV). TBS picked American Dad! up (just like Cartoon Network and Comedy Central did with Futurama) and Seth MacFarlane is looking to either finish out the show on another channel or continue it.
  • Totally Spies! ended in 2008 after five seasons. It was Un-Cancelled for a sixth season in 2013.


Statler: You know, I don't think this show deserved its second shot on TV.
Waldorf: I don't think it deserved its first!
Both: Do-ho-ho-ho-hoh!
Wolverine PublicityTurn of the MillenniumZeerust
Type CastingTriviaUnder Age Casting
True NeutralImageSource/Western AnimationUnnecessarily Creepy Robot

alternative title(s): Un Cancelled
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