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10 Superhero Shows That Were Canceled When They Were Just Getting Good

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Superhero shows always seem to get canceled when they’re just starting to get good. There are classic series like Smallville that some series fail to replicate or gritty shows like Titans that miss their mark while trying to be dark, and among them are series that never reach their full potential.


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Series can be canceled for numerous reasons, from a lacking budget to low numbers, but fans will always be left disappointed when their favorite heroes are pulled from television before their stories are finished. When this happens, series are mourned, campaigns beg to bring them back, and networks miss the opportunity to continue telling successful stories.

10/10 Agent Carter Had More Marvel History To Tell

Marvel's Agent Peggy Carter in her iconic red hat and suit.

One of the founding characters of the MCU is Peggy Carter, who stood beside Steve Rogers as he became Captain America, and who later helped the development of S.H.I.E.L.D. The series Agent Carter follows Peggy’s life after World War II, and how she adapts to becoming an agent stationed in New York.

The series follows Peggy’s exploits, including her involvement with the S.S.R., Howard Stark, and assassins from the Red Room. The story is like a treasure trove full of MCU history, but its fun characters and the engaging plot didn’t keep it from being canceled after an action-packed Season 2.

Image from Birds of Prey.

Before Harley Quinn brought the characters to the big screen in Birds of Prey, a series by the same name entertained television viewers in 2002. This original series features the comic characters Oracle, Huntress, and Black Canary. These characters were rarely seen in the live-action spotlight, and while they varied from their comic canon, this series with women leads came as a breath of fresh air.

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The series only has 13 episodes, however, as it runs for only one season. While the series didn’t come with the best reviews, it barely had the chance to get off the ground before it condemned its characters to be taken from TV. The series had a great formula and interesting characters, which could have encouraged a bigger and better Season 2.

8/10 The Swamp Thing Explores A New Side Of DC

Swamp Thing 2019 TV series.

The Swamp Thing is a timeless character, and his story opens the doors to a new side of DC. His series, which originally premiered on the DC streaming service DC Universe, follows the story of Abby Arcane and a deadly virus that is overtaking her hometown. While there, she connects with scientist Alec Holland, and after his death, she begins to unravel the secrets of the swamp.

The Swamp Thing is usually involved in darker stories, often interacting with characters like John Constantine or similar organizations such as Justice League Dark. Swamp Thing tells of the character’s origins, and while it was met with great reviews, the series was already off to a darkly compelling start in its first and only season.

7/10 Batman Beyond Is A Futuristic Adventure

Image from Batman Beyond.

On the heels of the overly successful Batman: The Animated Series, Batman Beyond takes its well-earned place within the DC Animated Universe. The series takes place in the future Gotham, where a teenager named Terry McGinnis takes over as the city’s Batman. The series maintains a loyal fanbase to this day, as its three seasons explore maturer themes, darker plots, and relatable characters.

Due to the series taking place in the future, it can play on many sci-fi themes that its predecessors could not. Despite the series’ unique premise and audience success, it ends after Season 3 due to the Justice Leagueseries being on the rise. With one hero series traded for another, it feels like Terry’s adventures as Batman could have continued for a few more seasons.

6/10 Constantine Mixes Horror & Inner-Conflict Perfectly

Matt Ryan as John Constantine in NBC's Constantine series from 2014.

There are few superhero shows that hone in on the horrors of their world, but Constantine doesn’t shy from it. Despite only running for one season, the series contains supernatural elements that both thrill and terrify its devoted fans. John Constantine is an exorcist who isn’t afraid to get on the bad side of heaven or hell.

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These dark themes carry the series, as Constantine is constantly at war with his inner demons and the real ones that he hunts down. He is joined by a host of other powerful characters, from his immortal best friend to a rebellious angel, but their story comes to a grinding halt when their only season ends on a cliffhanger.

5/10 Legends Of Tomorrow Returns To Its Roots

The titular team from the Arrowverse's Legends of Tomorrow show.

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow takes until Season 3 to find its place in the Arrowverse. It’s the goofy, fun-loving, underdog series that’s full of heart. Fans of the series love it because it’s not afraid to get weird or push the limits of the franchise. The Legends are also an ever-revolving cast full of representation, which makes every character interesting and unique.

The series’ cancelation after its seventh season devastated fans, and campaigns have been started to try and instigate a revival. The last season ends on a major cliffhanger, and the series itself had just returned to its time-traveling roots after spending several seasons exploring the supernatural and aliens.

4/10 The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes Captures Them At Their Core

Avengers Earth's Mightiest Heroes image.

Marvel aims to revive the core superhero team in The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. The series follows the exploits of the original Avengers, and the story is told as a micro-series with short segments. It’s a brief way to explore the lives of well-loved heroes, and the roster of characters grows during the two seasons of the series.

Fans enjoy Earth’s Mightiest Heroes because it takes inspiration from all manner of materials, from the comic lines that inspired it to the successful MCU. The series doesn’t pick up after Season 2, but it is succeeded by another series titled Avengers Assemble.

3/10 Justice League Unlimited Had Endless Inspiration

Justice League Unlimited Big Three image.

After the success of Justice League, the DC Animated Universe was expanded into Justice League Unlimited. The series hones in on an expanded superhero team as characters like Green Arrow, Supergirl, and the Question join the ranks of the League. Fans love the show due to its massive cast, creative writing, and the stories that come from both.

The series ends after only three seasons, which is a poor testament to the source material that inspires it. The Justice League’s ranks are large in this series, and each additional character is the perfect fodder for the plot, full-length stories, and interesting team-ups.

2/10 Batwoman Tells A New Story With The Bat Mantle

Ruby Rose as Kate Kane in Batwoman show.

The CW brings an outlying member of the Bat-family into the light of day in their series Batwoman. After the mysterious disappearance of Bruce Wayne, his cousin returns to Gotham to help defend against the crime and violence that now plagues it. The first season follows her exploits as a superhero, but she is replaced by Ryan Wilder in the ones after.

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With a new character in the role of Batwoman, the series takes time to adjust to this new change. Due to only having three seasons that have to accommodate a changing cast, Batwoman isn’t given a chance to reach the same heights as its Arrowverse counterparts. Wilder’s character had just started to be explored in full, and she could have gone far had she been given a longer run.

1/10 Young Justice Faces Unfair Cancelation Twice

Image from Young Justice.

Like many other DC animated series, Young Justice reaches such high popularity due to its phenomenal writing and contrasting characters. The series’ original two seasons take the narrative away from the usual heroes and place a light on their sidekicks. Heroes such as Robin, Kid Flash, and Aqualad are brought to the forefront of people’s minds in this story about change and growing up.

The series originally stopped airing on Cartoon Network after Season 2, but it was renewed nearly 10 years later. The next two seasons that follow focus on the original cast now being grown up and the generation of heroes who come after them. While Young Justice is incredibly successful with the audience for its heartfelt and mature storytelling, it’s yet to be renewed.

NEXT:10 Most Disappointing Off-Screen Deaths In Superhero Shows, Ranked

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