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Screwed By The Network / Disney Networks

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Incidents involving networks owned by The Walt Disney Company.

Live-action shows aired on ABC have their own page.

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    General / Multiple networks 
  • Disney used to have a rule that instantly screwed over any show they wanted: the 65-episode rule, and it mainly applied to animated series and Disney Channel shows. In TV rules, sixty-five is the absolute minimum number of episodes to be produced before a show can be officially syndicated. Once a show hits that milestone, it was very unlikely to be renewed by Disney, unless it was proven to be a major Cash Cow Franchise. Many shows have fallen victim to this rule. In recent years, Disney Channel has decided in favor of a four-season rule, where their shows can only last no more than four seasons. In theory, this rule can prevent certain shows from falling into Seasonal Rot and allow them to end in their prime. Yet at the same time, smaller shows that needed more time to find an audience might end up getting axed just when they hit their stride because of this rule.
  • According to the series bible, Legend of the Three Caballeros was meant to be released on television in 2017 (which channel exactly is unclear). The show instead got not only postponed to 2018 but also only on an app available only in the UK and Philippines with no advertising whatsoever, to the point that it's intended primary demographic isn't even aware of it.
  • Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors also fills this trope even if it doesn't look like it. Despite heavy advertising and being simulcast on both Disney Channel and Disney XD, its premiere date is on September 30, 2018 at 10:00pm. Unlike Star Wars Resistance mentioned below, it doesn't have the advantage of premiering on a holiday weekend.

    ABC - Game Shows 
  • Duel was bumped to the Friday Night Death Slot by ABC for Season 2, against The Price Is Right $1,000,000 Spectacular (itself a death sentence for any game show).
  • Let's Make a Deal was screwed by the network's attempts to boost ratings by having the show offer huge prizes and go to an hour-long format. This failed, so on December 29, 1975 the show was moved from 1:30 PM to Noon — against High Rollers on NBC and The Young and the Restless on CBS. Despite some initial success, the show eventually fell on July 9, 1976. The show's replacement was the Heatter-Quigley game Hot Seat... which only lasted 3 months.
  • Million Dollar Mind Game, a well-liked high-quality quiz imported from Russia and intended for primetime, was sat on by ABC for over a year before being slapped on Sunday afternoons against NFL games (a timeslot usually used for awful time-buy motocross events and infomercials!) with minimal promotion, and instead chose to focus on promoting and giving You Deserve It primetime space. The result? The burn-off got better ratings...and yet it was still canned after one season, which makes you wonder why Million-Dollar Mind Game was slotted on Sunday afternoons in the first place if neither show was going to last.
  • The original version of The Price Is Right, which jumped networks from NBC in September 1963:
    • The daytime show was retained at 11AM, where it'd flourished for nearly all of its run on NBC, facing Pete and Gladys on CBS and Concentration from the Peacock. On March 31, 1964, the show was moved to 10:30, going up against I Love Lucy repeats and Word for Word. On December 28, 1964, ABC moved Price to 11:30, facing The Jack Benny Daytime Show and Jeopardy! for its last eight months.
    • The nighttime show was first put in on Wednesdays at 8:30 PM, where it had done well on NBC before the latter had shuffled it around three times in two seasons (see below), but on December 6, 1963 was moved to Fridays at 9:30 (the last slot NBC had put it in). The show ended in September 1964, with that night's winner coming back on the following Monday's daytime episode.

    ABC - Animation 
  • The Jetsons originally got just one season despite becoming one of Hanna-Barbera's most-recognized cartoons. Around the time the show was in production, ABC had just caught up to rival NBC and got into color television. The Jetsons was selected to be the first color program on the network (which was fitting, since the show was a vision of the future and thus needed a futuristic technology to go with it), but color television sets were still hard to come across in The '60s. ABC gave affiliates the option to broadcast The Jetsons either in color or black-and-white, but since many ABC affiliates didn't have the money or technology to upgrade to color television, they chose the latter option. This meant that the only stations that did broadcast the series in color were ABC's owned-and-operated stations, and even those markets didn't have many residents with color televisions. This killed any attempt of the show's ratings to eclipse that of fellow H-B staple The Flintstones, which aired on the same network and didn't need color since the show's setting was the complete opposite of The Jetsons, and ABC decided to put more focus on The Flintstones and cancel The Jetsons. The show later found new life in syndication during the color television boom in the late 60's, leading to it getting Un-Canceled for two more seasons two decades later.
  • Another Hanna-Barbera cartoon that ABC didn't treat well was Jonny Quest. When it premiered on the network, it was given a comfy Friday night timeslot that brought in solid ratings and positive reviews despite controversy over its violent content. Unfortunately, CBS would premiere a little sitcom called The Munsters on their Thursday prime-time schedule, right up against ABC's cartoon favorite The Flintstones. In an effort to save that cartoon, ABC made Quest move to The Flintstones' Thursday slot in January 1965, causing it to compete with The Munsters, while the latter took Quest's place on Fridays. Consequently, Quest's ratings fell rapidly, resulting in the series not getting picked up for a second season. To add salt to the wound, The Flintstones never regained the Top 30 in the Nielsen ratings despite the move, and the cartoon would be cancelled anyway two seasons later, making the cancellation of Quest pointless.
  • Clerks: The Animated Series: Before it aired, ABC treated the show pretty decently; even airing an ad for Clerks during the Super Bowl. Then multiple problems came along. Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? became a smash hit for ABC, increasing the network's expectations for ratings. Test screenings for the show were poor among older audiences. Despite the show not being made for said audience, it was what caused ABC to move the premiere from mid-March to late-May, when most people rarely watch TV. Some major advertisers refused to support the show over "risque content" (even though Clerks, in contrast with the movie its based on, was as raunchy as most sitcoms at the time). And of the six episodes that were made, only episodes four and two were actually aired, in that order. This despite the number of running gags and ongoing plotlines that the series had, and the fact that the second episode makes sense only if you have seen the first (it's a parody of clip shows, because they only have one episode to mine for clips). All six episodes — with vitriolic commentaries — were later released on DVD.
  • Recess was once Adored by the Network. But Walt Disney Television decided to end the series in 2001, not for any issue with ratings (actually, the ratings for the show were for a while, the highest rated Saturday morning cartoon), but because of the aforementioned 65-episode policy.
  • Lloyd in Space and The Weekenders both got screwed over due to Disney's One Saturday Morning block getting canned (this was in spite of the latter show managing to actually get high enough ratings to beat out Pokémon) by being shafted to Toon Disney, a cable network that had lower viewership than Disney Channel at the time. Newer episodes of both shows were aired at random and without promotion over the course of two years.
  • Sonic Sat AM suffered this badly. Its entire first season was plagued by preempts from college football. Then, when the second season hit, it turned out that it was a major contender against Fox's Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. Then, with the Disney/ABC merger being planned, a new head honcho came in, and actually declared that he was sweeping out everything connected to the old guy. Sonic would be driven out (and would lead to One Saturday Morning a couple years later) and Power Rangers would begin its 10-year romp on Fox (then, ironically move to ABC, get screwed itself, then move to Nickelodeon). Its legacy, however, continued in the Archie comic book series, which ran for 290 issues and ended in 2016.
    • It didn't help that it never even aired in some markets, which were already starting to cut Saturday Morning Cartoons altogether in favor of local news and never saw it until it reached USA Network's Action Extreme Team.
  • Mary Kate and Ashley in Action! suffered the same fate as its animation studio, DiC Entertainment. They pulled the plug on the Olsen Twins' animated series, lasting for only one year, then made its move from ABC to Toon Disney.
  • Hoo boy. ReBoot. It was ahead of its time in every way, and ABC and its censors absolutely hated it. They canned it after its second season (fortunately, Cartoon Network rescued it and gave it a nice home on its then-new Toonami block, a move that allowed the writers to make Darker and Edgier storylines and thus gave the show a massive popularity boost). By the season finale, that feeling of contempt for creativity had become mutual as far as the writers were concerned:
    "It's the 'ABCs', they've turned on us! ...Treacherous Dogs!"
  • The Bugs Bunny and Tweety Show was hit with this in its final years before Cartoon Network gained the exclusive rights to the shorts in 2000. Of course, it didn't help that ABC had at that point been bought by WB's greatest rival, and was somewhat awkwardly squeezed in between Disney's One Saturday Morning stuff; not only that, but it was frequently preempted in favor The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh and afternoon sports and many affiliates dropped it altogether.
  • In the '80s, the one Thursday afternoon every month was loathed by young and old alike due to ABC's ABC's Afterschool Specials. Young people unlucky to be in a market where only Big Three stations existed and still carried syndicated cartoons saw pre-emptions of programs such as G.I. Joe and Transformers with no re-air, sometimes cutting off multi-parters like The Ultimate Doom or The Pyramid of Darkness. Adults with no children loathed having their game shows and Oprah being canned for the day to remind them that drug abuse, teen suicide and tobacco use (along with the scripts for these afterschool specials) were awful. By the '90s, stations began to play hardball with ABC, and with talk shows growing in ratings strength and primetime teen dramas dealing with issues in a much better and less Narmy manner, they were gone by 1997.
  • The ABC premiere of the movie Inside Out was scheduled on February 7th, 2018 at 8:00PM. ABC and Disney are in a rock and a hard place though, as the logical thing of premiering a family movie on a Friday or a weekend is pretty much dead in the water ratings-wise in 2018, but the Wednesday premiere on a school night is no better.
    • Another example of this was back in 2015 with the two Peanuts Christmas specials, A Charlie Brown Christmas and I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown. They were both aired on a weekday night at 9PM ET, with a behind-the-scenes special aired before the first, and Toy Story That Time Forgot and Shrek The Halls aired before the second. It didn't help that a full length feature film and the special's 50th Anniversary was also in 2015.
  • Bump in the Night was intended to get a third season, but like ReBoot and Sonic SatAM was canceled after Disney acquired ABC.
  • Teacher's Pet had great ratings and reviews, however (like what happened to Lloyd in Space and The Weekenders), Disney cancelled it in 2002 because of the One Saturday Morning block getting the boot for ABC Kids (only Recess, which was the most popular show on the block, survived the block switch, and it was in reruns). It doesn't help that during its' second season, ABC damned it to a 7:00 AM time-slot, when (most of the time) the target audience would still be asleep.
  • Teamo Supremo had solid ratings on the One Saturday Morning/ABC Kids lineup, but after two seasons, ABC decided to move the show exclusively to the premium cable network Toon Disney, with its slot being replaced with newcomer Lilo & Stitch: The Series. From there, the show suffered a poor treatment. After 2003, Toon Disney didn't bother advertising the show's remaining episodes, leaving viewers unaware.

    ABC Family/Fox Family/Freeform 
  • In the United States, Freeform during the Fox Family era only aired the first two seasons of The Adventures of Shirley Holmes on Saturdays and Sundays before it stopped airing the show. To add insult to injury, the episodes were usually aired out of order. The third and fourth seasons never saw the light of day in the US.
  • Contractual obligation with the network's original founder Pat Robertson is the only thing keeping The 700 Club on Freeform. In the meantime, the network is doing everything it can to discourage people from watching it, airing it at 11 pm and putting disclaimers before it that its views do not reflect that of the network. As of 2018 though, the network's management has taken a Sarcasm Mode as far as the disclaimer (such messages as "watch or don't watch, we don't care either way" and pleading with Robertson to "not burn the place down while we're gone" have appeared), reminding viewers that Pat Robertson has zero control over their Internet presences and viewers can just go there and watch their shows while The 700 Club airs.
  • The network spent the spring and summer of 2013 coming out with news on everything on the network except about the fate of Bunheads, which had their first season come to an end in February of that year. The network waited five months and through multiple questions from fans and television critics to announce the show's cancellation in the dog days of July, leading to consternation among the fans of the show, and did no favors to the cast, who were stuck waiting to see if it was coming back and were unable to commit to the 2013-14 pilot season without news either way. It also had the opposite effect of having those who like Bunheads root against the new shows The Fosters and Twisted in the infinitesimal hope that they'd bomb so they'd get their show back. Unsurprisingly, both shows did well enough to came back in the winter, though Twisted ended up plunging and was canceled at the end of its winter half-season. Bunheads's cancellation lead to questions as to why ABC Family didn't expand their original programming efforts to another night so they don't have to deal with this (Freeform finally did in 2018 with an expansion of original programming to Thursday nights).
  • Shall no one mourn the loss of Kyle XY? After 3 successful seasons (which most people agreed that it really didn't degrade in quality at any point) it appeared that mainly after the slow decline of Heroes and Smallville viewers, ABC Family announced that Superhuman Realism based shows weren't really their bag anymore. Kyle was suddenly canceled, and ABC Family focused on more realistic shows in the next few years, before returning to similar content (such as Shadowhunters and Cloak & Dagger) when it was renamed to Freeform.
    • The series was ultimately axed due to low ratings. But while it is true that ratings dropped after The Secret Life of the American Teenager premiered, Kyle was still pulling in an average of 1.5 million. That's pretty good for ABC Family, but it wasn't Secret Life's average of 3 million. It's also worth pointing out that, because Season 2 was longer than the show's other two seasons, Kyle XY ended up on a nearly year-long hiatus after the second season came to an end. It didn't help matters that ABC Family seemed more intent on shilling shows like The Secret Life, because by the time Kyle XY came back for the third season, many casual fans had mistakenly assumed that the show was already canceled and, thus, didn't tune in.
  • Another show that was cancelled due to ABC Family's new "more realistic" outlook was The Middle Man. Alas. Matt Keeslar's acting career pretty much ended at this point.
  • 10 Things I Hate About You had solid ratings and good advertising for the first half of Season 1. Disaster struck with the second half: this time, there was scarcely any advertising. The half-hour show wasn't paired with anything else and merely showed an encore instantly afterwards. The instant followup was also the only rerun that was on at a reasonable time of day. Now in this day and age, if one misses a show, one can catch it online...right? Not so fast. The website made people pay a 99¢ fee if they wanted to watch the episode online before Friday (when it would become free), a tactic they haven't used on any other show before or since. The worst blow, however, was moving the show from Tuesday nights to Monday nights, pitting a show still finding an audience against ratings juggernaut Dancing with the Stars. The show still did fairly well considering the circumstances, but dipped below an average of one million viewers, which prompted a swift cancellation.
  • Back when Fox bought out the channel, it cancelled all their original shows on at the time- including Jay Wolpert's Shopping Spree and The New Shop Til You Drop (which did get revived again on the former PAX TV, though the series had a major retool in 2003 that was critically panned).
  • The Animated Adaptation of Tabaluga was slated to air on Fox Family Channel in 1998 on the Captain's Treasure House block, but was pre-empted at the last minute for Mr. Moose's Fun Time. However, it was later aired on Fox's own boyzChannel, where the situation was worse. Since most cable providers weren't interested in the channel, very few households received it.
  • In a rare example of this trope happening with the TV broadcast of the film, Freeform promised to air Frozen eight times during the 25 Days of Christmas. However, the day before the event began, they cut down the airings and only kept the showings on December 17th at 9PM and December 18th at 7:20PM. It didn't help that people on Freeform's Facebook complained about the number of airings and that one of the original airings was supposed to happen the day the film made its debut on ABC.
  • Norm of the North made its network television premiere on Freeform at 11:55PM EST on a Sunday night, when nobody in the target audience would even be awake.

    A&E Networks 
  • Spooks got this bad during its two runs on cable TV in the United States. It first landed on A&E at a time when the network was in the process of decaying from its original image as a home for British imports into the reality/docu-net it is today. After getting decent midweek slots for series one and two, the network decided to push series three to Saturdays at 10 to make room for reality shows in that midweek slot. Ratings suffered, but A&E was already locked into a contract for series four. So, they pulled repeats off the schedule during the long hiatus between series, and dumped series four on Fridays at 11, where the ratings dropped so hard, so fast that it was pulled after two weeks.
    • That said, at least the network bothered to burn off the rest of series four (in Saturday afternoon marathon form). The show wouldn't get that chance at BBC America, who restarted the show's run at series one. This time at least, the show would maintain a midweek slot for its entire run. Unfortunately, the third series found it in competition against American Idol, which helped drain away a lot of viewers from the show (as Idol was prone to do to all shows at the time). The fourth series actually premiered against the gigantic Idol finale that year, and the numbers never recovered during the subsequent summer run, which led to BBCA pulling it after the fourth episode.
      • Luckily, PBS would pull a Network to the Rescue by contracting most of its affiliates to carry the show. As of this writing, the first nine series have aired in their entirety.
  • Despite pulling in respectable ratings, Lifetime canned Debt after two seasons because its demographics were skewing towards males on a television channel aimed at women. Supermarket Sweep also met this fate before it was Un-Canceled by PAX in 2000. (Disney, which produced the show, attempted to bring it back in syndication, but that didn't pan out for some reason.)

    Disney Channel 
  • If you fall in love with a series that airs on Disney, the odds are you can say goodbye to ever getting full-season releases (or maybe even a DVD release, period). The best you can hope for are "best-ofs" or re-edited movie editions, as per Kim Possible. There have been a few exceptions (specifically Kim Possible, Mickey Mouse (2013), Lizzie McGuire, Hannah Montana, and Gravity Falls), but only a few. Let's just say don't hold your breath.
  • If you were to catch any animated show from 2010 to 2016, it would've been miraculous. Phineas and Ferb, Wander over Yonder and even Gravity Falls were swiftly moved to Disney XD, as well as all imported series. The shows pitched as Disney Channel shows meant for kids 6-12 that would not fit in with the Disney XD lineup would be retooled into Disney Junior shows, as was the case with Sofia the First and Miles from Tomorrowland. This was quite controversial on the internet because Disney is well-known as an animation company, yet all their namesake cable network was airing were kidcoms.
  • Conversely to what happened to Disney Channel in the U.S, on Disney Channel Asia, any live-action show (that are produced by Disney) can get screwed over in order to make way for animated shows or Malaysian-produced series like Upin & Ipin, BoBoiBoy, and Waktu Rehat.
    • It's the same situation with the Japanese counterpart. Animated shows note  air all day long, and the live-action shows only play at night. Even movie airings are not spared from this, as most of the movies the channel airs are animated films.
  • The Replacements had aired between Saturday and Friday nights at 9:00 for its first season, until Disney Channel changed the date from Saturday/Friday nights to Monday afternoons at 2:30 for its second season. Premieres were eventually moved to a slightly better timeslot at 5:00, later on.
  • Wander over Yonder. The show was initially picked up by Disney Channel in 2012 and began airing regularly in September 2013. From January 2014, Disney Channel began showing fewer reruns of the show and eventually, on January 25, 2014, after a rerun of "The Bounty", all reruns of the show were removed from the schedule. Even episodes scheduled to air in February 2014 were pulled from airing.
    • A few weeks later, the network announced the show would air new episodes on Disney XD, but said episodes would air on the Disney XD on Disney Channel block starting in July 2014. Then the entire show was removed from the block, and the network entirely, in February 2015, and hasn't aired since then, leaving 3 episodes from season 1 and the entire second season unaired. When the show was up for renewal after its second season, Disney XD decided it couldn't afford to continue the series after eighty episodes. Despite protests from fans as well as series creator Craig McCracken, the show was cancelled. However, what was totally uncalled for was that the season 2 finale was advertised as the "series finale", but ends on a massive Sequel Hook that would've been resolved in season 3. The backlash was so bad that fans resorted to setting up multiple petitions at calling for Disney XD to reverse course.
  • Lizzie McGuire, which helped put the Disney Channel back on the map, ended after fulfilling its 65-show order.
  • Even Stevens, also a victim of the 65-episode rule.
  • Phil of the Future, which was cancelled well before the 65-episode mark, much to the confusion and dismay of fans. The reason Disney gave the cast was that since the show was so popular and making them so much money, they had a choice: produce a third season of the show, or use the money to create another show with the potential to be just as popular. Despite many fans' attempts to save it, Disney chose the latter option, giving birth to Wizards of Waverly Place.
  • I Didn't Do It had modest ratings in its first season, so Disney renewed it for a second season and along with it, the original writing team was fired and replaced with the writing team of Good Luck Charlie. Disney also moved it to Fridays, hoping the show would have better ratings; but Disney rarely advertised it in the block, leading the series to be axed.
  • Prankstars, a Disney-fied Punk'd, was killed halfway into its run when host Mitchell Musso was caught drunk driving, blacklisted from the company, and written out of Pair of Kings.note  It still aired in the United Kingdom for a few months to low viewership without any promotion whatsoever.
  • So Random! started off pretty decently, but eventually it was moved to 7:30 PM, and during the Summer it had been consistently getting less than 3 million viewers per episode. note  It might be that people weren't as pleased with Demi Lovato having left the channel at the time, but still. Though since the fall, it seemed to be making its way back up rather quickly...until the series got cancelled in March 2012.
  • Season 3 of Shake It Up! was given a 9 PM time slot on Sunday, a time when children are usually in bed.The ratings actually increased from the second season, but not enough for Disney to give the show a fourth season.
  • Stuck in the Middle was a huge hit for the network, but it was announced that the show would be ending after 3 seasons, leaving only Raven's Home, Andi Mack, and Bunk'd (which got uncancelled with a new cast) as the only sitcoms on Disney Channel still in production, as Bizaardvark same with was also cancelled.
  • Tangled: The Series, based on the mega-hit film Tangled, has also been screwed over despite being renewed for a second season before its premiere and was renewed for season three before its second season. Starting in late season 1 (around a few weeks before the season finale), its reruns were greatly decreasing. The show went four months without reruns from January 28, 2018 to May 19, 2018. Once the second season premiered, the show had a few encores before being reduced so that Disney Channel airs new episodes and only new episodes with no encores. To top it off, the show was a scheduling nightmare, going from Friday nights to Sunday nights to Saturday mornings to Sunday mornings, the first three all in season 1.
  • Star Wars Resistance was screwed from the get-go. Its hour-long premiere is Sunday October 7, 2018 at 10:00pm. It could've just been a one-time thing since it's the day before Columbus Day, but episodes after the pilot also air Sunday nights.
  • It took over a year for the network to air the first season of Hotel Transylvania: The Series, and by the time they aired the last few episodes in October 2018, the whole season was already available on Netflix.
  • Much like with Tangled above, Big Hero 6: The Series fell into this midway through season 1, with reruns being greatly reduced, and the show only airs new episodes, with no reruns. It says something when Disney XD, which it was originally for, treats the show better.

    ESPN/ABC Sports 
  • In 2005, ESPN opted not to continue its relationship with the National Hockey League (fresh out of the lockout that canceled the entire 2004-05 season), and the cable rights were taken over by OLN (which then became Versus, and later still, NBC Sports), a channel dedicated to outdoor sports with distribution not as wide as ESPN's. When NBC finally offered to air the 2007 NHL playoffs, they cut away from a series-clinching playoff game IN OVERTIME to show 90 minutes of pre-race coverage of the Preakness Stakes, knocking the remainder of the game over to Versus (except in Buffalo, one of the NHL's smallest yet loyal markets, and Ottawa, where CBC knows better and didn't have such a conflict). Thankfully, they've learned their lesson (and Versus, now known as the NBC Sports Network following Comcast's acquisition of NBC, has become a lot more established since.) The Preakness Stakes incident was Executive Meddling of its own, as NBC's contract with the race (negotiated years before, mind you) had advertising commitments.
    • ESPN and ABC aren't exactly blameless for losing their NHL TV rights, though. Once they pulled some duplicitous tactics to yank broadcast rights away from FOX, both ESPN and ABC proceeded to ignore the league, giving it absolutely no advertising time on ABC and the bare minimum on ESPN. This behavior accelerated when ESPN and ABC got the rights to broadcast NBA games from NBC (coincidentally, the NHL's direct competitor for the winter months), with both networks making it clear they were prioritizing basketball over hockey. Then right as the 2004-05 NHL lockout started, ESPN canceled their NHL recap show NHL2night and refused to revive the show when the League approached them for a new cable deal after the labor dispute ended. With this kind of network screwing over a 6-7 year period, you cannot possibly blame the NHL for jumping to a more caring TV partner in Versus (although going with NBC is still inexcusable, as shown above). This blog entry goes into more detail about how Disney's networks screwed over the NHL, as well as the aforementioned dirty tactics used to screw FOX out of any TV rights.
  • The 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Bank of America 500 was a victim of this. The first 25 laps, as well as NASCAR Countdown, were pre-empted due to the college football game (TCU versus Baylor) running long. And it couldn't have been shown on the other ESPN networks, either; considering that they were all airing games of their ownnote . Talk about overbooking...
    • During its second stint with NASCAR, ESPN had a nasty habit in general of screwing over NASCAR races, often moving the second-tier Busch/Nationwide Series races around to accomodate their more lucrative sports contracts, mainly college sports and NBA games running overtime. In one instance, the 2011 Lily Diabetes 250 at Richmond International Raceway was moved to Fox-owned Speed Channel, who gladly produced the broadcast themselves with their own broadcast team and on-screen graphics used for Sprint Cup and Truck Series events (a Nationwide Series race hadn't aired on a Fox network since 2011, as ESPN had the exclusive contract to air the entire season). Even worse was when ESPN moved races to networks not everyone gets, such as ESPN Classic and ESPNews. Races on ABC were also at the mercy of local affiliates, who would often preempt pre-race coverage in favor of educational programming to meet FCC mandates, and in some egregious cases, left the race while it was in progress, but usually returned in time for the ending.
  • Another victim of ESPN's overbooking was drag racing. It was hard to be an NHRA fan when event telecasts were frequently shuffled around due to conflicts with other programming. In 2015, the NHRA agreed to end its contract, and agreed to a new one with Fox Sports 1 and 2 beginning 2016. Unlike ESPN, Fox has aired much more thorough coverage, and viewership has seen major increases.

    Toon Disney/Jetix/Disney XD 
  • Blazing Dragons, a British animated show that portrayed the knights of King Arthur's Court as a bunch of incompetent dragons, was aired on Disney for a while, but was dropped in a time slot that was so late at night/early in the morning that it was rarely seen before being quietly scuttled away.
  • Toon Disney never intended to order a second season for Pucca, since it was a one-time licensed property Disney decided to import to the US. However, the show's immense popularity on Disney's Jetix channels in Europe led to pressure from Jetix Europe to order a second season. Disney ultimately did so in 2008, but promoted it less frequently than they did with the first season, harming its ratings. Upon Toon Disney's re-launch as Disney XD, the show was unceremoniously dropped from the schedule, and Disney's license to the Pucca property lapsed, ensuring its cancellation.
  • On the UK Jetix channel, Combo Niños aired in an 11:30am slot for the school holidays of 2008, but after only two weeks it had moved to the Midnight-6:00am Graveyard slot and vanished entirely when Jetix rebranded to Disney XD in August of 2009. Averted when the show had a second chance of life on GMTV's Toonatik strand in the Summer of 2009 and later the Christmas of that year.
  • Captain Flamingo was atrociously screwed by Jetix when it was picked up in the US from Canada. The show premiered on Monday mornings at 8:30, when its target audience was heading for school. After seven months of this treatment, it was taken off the channel for two weeks, and when it returned it was pushed to Tuesdays at the inexplicable timeslot of 5:30 am, which was a) still a school day, and b) a time where the target audience was still asleep. The show was then pulled when Disney XD replaced Toon Disney, taking the Jetix block down with it.
  • Motorcity, a well-animated Flash series about a hot-rod gang defending Motorcity from Detroit Deluxe's dictatorship. The show received the axe before the first season even finished! The series concluded in January 2013, but reruns weren't aired until 2015.
  • TRON: Uprising got postponed several months only seven episodes in, got postponed another month three episodes after that, and got shunted to a midnight timeslot on Mondays upon its return. It didn't get renewed for a second season, and the final three episodes did not air.
  • Timon & Pumbaa aired its third season on Toon Disney with virtually no promotion to speak of, causing it to end without much fanfare. Granted, the show was initially cancelled by CBS after two seasons due to Disney's acquisition of ABC, but popular demand overseas led Disney to produce a third season reluctantly. Toon Disney only aired the third season out of a contractual obligation.
  • Cartoons based on Marvel Comics have, in recent years, been hit with this. For some shows, most notably...
    • The Spectacular Spider-Man and Wolverine and the X-Men. This was due to Disney taking over Marvel and, as such, axing any TV show that requires them to pay another company for. For other shows, such as Iron Man: Armored Adventures and X-Men: Evolution though, they just silently end the series without any announcement. Evolution is notable for the final season, which while resolving the Apocalypse plot arc that had been building up since season 2, had a notably shorter episode count (with just nine episodes, compared the previous seasons which had an average of around double that), and was filled with several one shot story episodes that, really, ended with a lot of loose plot threads. Steven Gordon, Evolution's head character designer and occasional director and writer, has stated that, while he believes the show ended well, he does have some hard feelings for Marvel's decision to end it, as he noted they didn't appear to really care for the show at all despite many of the show's aspects and a certain original character later being adopted by Marvel's writers later.
    • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes! got this treatment: canceled after the second season and replaced with Avengers, Assemble!, a show closer in look and tone to the movie franchise. Although EMH did pull in good ratings and was critically acclaimed, part of the problem was that much of the audience was outside Disney XD's target demographic.
    • Speaking of Avengers, Assemble! and Guardians of the Galaxy , both of them became screwed over starting in mid-2017. Put simply, they would air new episodes, with little to no encores. By 2018, they were both screwed over to the point that they only air when there's a new episode, and on Sundays, but even then, not every Sunday. For comparison's sake, Marvel's Spider-Man has weekday reruns despite being younger than both shows, and Ultimate Spider-Man , which ended back in 2017, still has reruns.
  • Despite having a strong narrative and greatly improving with the second season, the television adaption of W.I.T.C.H. was canceled in-spite of a very obvious Sequel Hook at the end of season 2. According to one of the crew that worked on the show, this was because the new higher-ups didn't like the show's premise and wanted to make way for more live-action sitcoms on Disney Channel. The fact that Greg Weisman worked on the show's second season should be no surprise at this point.
  • Billy Dilley's Super Duper Subterranean Summer, debuting in the summer of 2017, aired regularly until the series was confirmed canceled after 13 episodes.
  • For Future-Worm!, following its premiere in the summer of 2016 and by late of that year, the series had fewer reruns over time, aside from airing new episodes around 8:30 PM, sometimes with little to no promotion. In 2017, the only reruns that the show had were in March where it only ran as a marathon, until reruns of the show were pulled entirely. The series was allegedly renewed for a second season, but this turned out to be false.
  • Many of Disney XD's Canadian imports tend to get this. Take for example, Jimmy Two-Shoes - a classic example of executives being given broadcasting rights, but then acting like they never wanted it. New episodes of the show aired at midnight with reruns being aired at 4 in the morning. Rumors say the network felt the implications of the show's setting were too kid-unfriendly, but the more likely culprit was simply that them treating it like many Canadian imports (regardless of quality)- cheap timeslot filler. Whatever the case, it ended after two seasons, despite announcements for a third season.
  • Disney XD strikes again with their treatment of Doraemon. On the third Friday of its run, they pre-empted its slot for a Gravity Falls marathon. note  Then, they replaced the slots new episodes were to premiere in with re-runs of other Doraemon episodes and decided to show only one new episode one week... on a Wednesday, and then stopped showing any new episodes at all.
    • When the second season of Doraemon's English dub began airing on Disney XD in summer 2015, it was set at the 1:00 P.M. slot. Sure, that's not so bad during the summer, but even after the summer it continued to stay in the 1:00 P.M. slot while the target audience was at school, and eventually they began pushing back episodes on and on.
    • It was worse on what used to be Disney XD's Canadian version (now known as Family CHRGD). The show only aired at 12PM on random days in the summer of 2015, and only ten episodes were aired. What's worse is that DHX Media purchased the network at the same time they began to air the show, which could justify its poor treatment.
  • Shows not produced by Disney (particularly those produced in Canada) tend to have a very hard time lasting more than a season on Disney networks that aren't Disney Junior. For several examples, the summer of 2013 had Disney XD bring in four new shows: Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures, the 2013 Max Steel cartoon and Teletoon's Packages from Planet X and Camp Lakebottom, none of which were produced by Disney. By the next year, Max Steel and Pac-Man were the only shows that lasted on the network for more than one season, but after they were renewed, Disney XD suddenly had no interest in either show anymore and dumped both of them. The producers of both shows moved the programs to Netflix and iTunes, where they remain moderately successful. One would have to wonder if Disney has a dislike for Canadian animation.
  • The 7D was canceled in April 2016 during its second season while also suffering the ignominy of having that season's intended 39 episodes shortened to 20.
  • Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja likewise suffered from Disney XD's 2nd season curse: Started off great, then episodes got delayed, barely any advertisements, and finally was quietly cancelled to which the show ended on a cliffhanger (though at least wrapped up its storylines with Mirror Julian and the Sorcerer).
  • Right Now Kapow is another bad example, despite the novelty of a Warner Bros. cartoon premiering on a Disney network. Right from the beginning, Disney XD acted like they wanted nothing to do with it, placing it in a weeknight timeslot at 9 p.m. with little promotion, which showed in the ratings. When character designer Alex Schubert announced its cancellation after a single season, he cited DXD's preference towards home-grown series, a criteria which Right Now Kapow doesn't fall under.
  • The Disney XD two-season curse continues with Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero becoming its latest victim. After the first season finished its run, the show went oddly quiet and wasn't seen at all for at least a year (occasional marathons aside). When it finally returned for a second season, it was barely advertised, had half the episode count the first season did, was burned off within the whole month of July 2017, and was not reran afterwards. Even Wander's last season was showcased better.
  • Crash & Bernstein. How, you may ask? First off, due to Disney XD deciding to rerun a one-hour episode of Kickin' It, the debut of episode 7 ("Motorcycle Crash") was delayed by a week. After that, they put it on hiatus to air new episodes of Mr. Young.
  • As noted before, Disney was the home of Power Rangers, but would eventually grow to think of the show as an embarrassment. Even though the recently-debuted Disney XD would have been a perfect home for it, they kept airing it on ABC, which had its own issues.
  • Disney XD began airing Doctor Who starting from the episode "New Earth" in May 2015 with very heavy advertising, only to drop it shortly after.
  • Stitch! in the U.S. on Disney XD. After four or five episodes, it got cancelled and replaced by Rated "A" for Awesome. According to one of the people who worked on the English dub, the cancellation wasn't due to a poor timeslot or ratings issues, it was because it didn't have anything to do with Lilo & Stitch overall, being a Japanese anime taking place in Japan and replacing Lilo (who is said to have grown up and gotten married) with a new Japanese girl.
  • Naruto Shippuden was briefly treated well by Disney XD, when the early episodes of the show were light-hearted fun for tween boys. Then Disney discovered the show would get more violent and pushed it to a later time slot, without notifying the Shonen Jump publishers advertising the show in the magazine. Then, the show was twice preempted by tweencoms at the last minute and, soon afterwards, disappeared from the schedule. Disney XD has since removed all Naruto material from their website.
  • In January 2017, reruns of Phineas and Ferb were sent to the graveyard hours, airing between 4:00 A.M and 6:00 A.M each weeknight (although a weekend-long marathon would still occasionally air). Two years after its final episode aired, it seemed as if Disney XD was getting ready to retire one their most popular shows. During the following summer, however, reruns were added back to daytime hours. Since then, the show has been constantly airing on the schedule alongside the newest originals.
  • Atomic Puppet was one of the most harmful examples of this trope in Disney XD's case. The show would be aired in mid-afternoon slots, just as kids were getting out of school or served after-school detention. Likewise, new episodes were sporadically aired without further announcement. To add insult to injury, the show gets pulled from Disney XD without any indication of reruns or a second season.
  • Yo Kai Watch has gotten this treatment as of 2017. When it was revealed that the anime series was struggling in the ratings against Disney's own first-party originals, and even Pokémon (a series many thought Yo-Kai Watch would kill), they decided to focus on those shows instead of aggressively marketing it like when the first game came out. And it wouldn't surprise you that a third season was announced, but with little to no promotion for it outside of the network it airs on.
  • Milo Murphy's Law was a follow up series from the guys who made Phineas and Ferb and debuted in October 2016 to much acclaim. After airing a month's worth of episodes, it was four months before any more episodes aired, followed by an episode in July, and the rest of the season in September. It was renewed for a second season in February 2017, was announced to have a crossover with its sister show at Comic-Con, and it was given a nice plum Saturday morning spot between DuckTales (2017) and Marvel's Spider-Man. But come 2018 and reruns of the show have disappeared, with no premiere date for the second season or the crossover announcednote , and it had no presence at Comic-Connote . It was eventually revealed that season 2, while it has the advantage of premiering on Disney Channel, will start in January 2019, over 13 months after its current episode. Said new episodes premiere at a graveyard 7:00 A.M Eastern every Saturday morning. To add salt to the wound, Japan and Germany are two of the many places to air season 2 in summer 2018 before the US.

    Playhouse Disney/Disney Junior 
  • Disney Junior originally looked like they were unscrewing PB&J Otter by putting it back on air after not wanting to air repeats of the show for years. Then they proceeded to royally screw it over again by preempting it for Jake and the Never Land Pirates reruns in November of 2013, then putting it on at 2:30AM on Sundays before it was replaced with The Octonauts.
  • In October of 2014, Henry Hugglemonster was screwed over by Disney Junior for more airings of Doc McStuffins, just when merchandise had come out for the show. It now only airs during the early morning hours except on weekends.
  • After treating the show nicely for five years, Little Einsteins was only shown between 4:00 A.M. and 7:00 A.M. on the Disney Junior block. It didn't help that it and Baby Einstein were Screwed by the Lawyers, though is still reran on the Disney Junior Channel
  • In 2016, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, despite having great DVD and merchandise sales as well as being the flagship show of Disney Junior, got cancelled because it wasn't performing as well as the other Disney Junior shows like Sofia the First and even newer shows on rival channels like PAW Patrol. Disney also wanted to make a spin-off aimed at a slightly older audience; many parents were understandably upset by this news.
  • Goldie & Bear fell victim to this during it's second season. As it went on, it's reruns were greatly reduced, and only aired on the main channel when it had new episodes, received little to no advertising, got burned off to the Disney Junior channel to air it's remaining 5 episodes, and was taken o ff the schedule a few weeks after the series finale aired.
  • In Asia, Disney's refactoring of P Asia iney Junior Asia inevitably gave the non-Disney programming like Clifford the Big Red Dog the pink slip. And while they brought in Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood initially after the refactoring, the show barely lasted a season. Disney Junior Asia is now mostly bereft of any non-Disney programming, the only surviving non-Disney programming seems to be Sesame Street, Elmo's World and UK spinoff Furchester Hotel. Insiders claim that this is due to Executive Meddling, the higher-ups at Disney's broadcasting arm wants their channel to focus only on in-house contentnote .
    • This treatment also happened to acquired shows on the Disney Junior channel and block prior to the introduction of PJ Masks. The show would usually run in either an early morning timeslot after a normal run of a few months (as was the case with Tinga Tinga Tales and Babar and the Adventures of Badou) or, if they were channel-exclusive, late at night (as was the case with Guess How Much I Love You). The only exception during this period was Timmy Time, which only got removed once Sofia the First premiered.
    • P. King Duckling premiered on the main channel, but got low ratings and was later shuffled to the 24/7 subnetwork, where it was burnt off. It was renewed for a season 2, but it is unknown when it will premiere. It's also one of the only shows not available on DisneyNOW.
  • This often happens to the block in Disney Channel during the summer months, with it ending as late as 9:00AM for tweencoms and starting as early as 5:00AM, which isn't good for people whose don't have the 24/7 channel, meaning they'll either miss it, wake up very early to see their favorite show or have to record it.
  • As of fall 2017, if a interstitial series isn't either based on one of Disney Junior's shows or isn't Merchandise-Driven (like Sunny Bunnies or Molang), expect it to air either late at night, early in the morning, or pulled altogether. For example, Nina Needs to Go, which had new episodes produced in 2017, was quickly put in mostly early morning timeslots a few months after said episodes premiered. And none of the older shorts Disney Junior used to have air anymore on the block or channel, save for Nina Needs To Go! and the occasional airing of Big Block SingSong.
    • In 2019, all of the older shorts were dropped from the schedule on both the main channel and the 24/7 network, replaced by more airings of Molang.
  • Sofia the First fell into this during season 4. Its reruns were greatly reduced as it went on, it got pushed into rather peculiar premiere times, and eventually was taken off the schedule a few months after the series finale aired. It does fare better than most shows that fell victim to thus due to having enough foresight to plan a series finale and, again, being rerun as opposed to being taken off immediately.
  • If an older show gets a chance to be rerun on the 24/7 channel and its' name is not Mickey Mouse Clubhouse or Little Einsteins, it will usually be moved to an early timeslot after a few months or vanish from the schedule with no explanation.
  • Despite being based on one of Disney's most successful properties, The Lion Guard fell into this midway through its second season. The series has received little to no advertising, has gotten pushed into rather peculiar premiere times, has had several long hiatuses, and, as of November 2018, is airing the remainder of its second season and the entire third season on the Disney Junior Channel.