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Top 10 Worst TV Shows of All Time

Written by: Lindsay Shugerman

June 12, 2008
Filed Under TV 

Tags: ,

It’s subjective, but hey, someone has to do it. The top 10 worst TV shows of all time…the votes are in (mine, actually) and here’s how they stack up.

10. Joanie Loves Chachi

I’ll admit…I had a little bit of a crush on Scott Baio. Okay, more than a little. But even that couldn’t help this plot-less spin-off from the wildly successful show Happy Days. Without The Fonz, Richie and the rest of the supporting cast, this show was doomed from day one.

9. Small Wonder

A diminutive robot in the shape of a 10-year-old girl. Asimov never anticipated this when he composed his Laws of Robotics – even he would have condoned harming the human creators to end this disaster. No acting skills in sight, miserable dialog and an over-enthusiastic laugh track – small wonder few of the cast members have been seen in TV since its three-year run. Ex-robot Tiffany Brissette was last reported working as a nurse in Colorado.

8. Baywatch

For 12 years, scantily clad women trotted across the screen on this show that pandered to every adolescent boy’s daydreams. The show’s main attraction was Pamela Anderson…or rather one part of Anderson’s anatomy. As television drama goes, this show was all wet.

7. Antique Roadshow

Ever since this show started, people on both sides of the pond have been convinced that their household hand-me-downs are the key to a comfortable retirement. Their mock surprise when they find out that that set of prints is allegedly worth 10 times what gramps paid for it back in ’09 is hardly the stuff of great drama…the real fun will come when they try to sell it for what the appraisers claim it’s worth! eBay, anyone?

6. The Nanny

Anorexic Fran Drescher whined her way through six seasons of this pointless show. That a wealthy and urbane producer like Max Sheffield, played by Charles Shaughnessy, would have tolerated Fran’s antics for six long years crosses a line better saved for the Twilight Zone. Once they ditched the live audience, the laugh track dominated the show – unfortunately not drowning out the signature Drescher whine.

5. Deep Space Nine

As a die-hard science fiction fan, I wanted to like this series. But the fact is, when your cast is stuck in a space station, it’s hard to get enough really interesting people, or rather beings, to show up at their doorstep. Unlike Star Trek: The Next Generation, or Voyager, they could not come across new civilizations or discover new planets. Sadly, this interplanetary Holiday Inn just couldn’t measure up to the rest of the Star Trek family.

4. The Real World

Take a group of self-absorbed 20-somethings, put them in a house where they have nothing to do except get on each others nerves and call it TV. The good side was the lack of bad scripts and bad acting. The bad side was the lack of any scripts and anything resembling talent.

3. Three’s Company

It was edgy for its time…guys and girls living together, the running gay or straight gag, the sexually frustrated Mrs. Roper. But it was also bad TV. When you didn’t have to actually have to have the sound turned on to know exactly what they were saying in every scene, it’s clearly a contender for the 10 worst list.

2. American Idol

Weeks and weeks of truly terrible singers and humiliating moments, followed by a few episodes of talent. Alternately arrogant and irrelevant judges. A bevy of put-downs and insults. Top that off with a nationwide voting frenzy that surpasses the presidential election, and you have a recipe for one of the worst TV shows of all time.

1. The Man Show

As if the world needed any more proof that there are men out there with zero attention span unless it involves breasts, crude jokes and beer, this show was that proof. While intended as satire, most of its fan base apparently thought it was great entertainment. From girls leaping around on trampolines, to the infamous Juggy Dance Squad, nothing was out of bounds or too tasteless for the 5 seasons this show ran on Comedy Central.

There are probably far worse shows out there. Shows that never made it past their pilot episode and painful summer replacements, I’ve been fortunate enough to miss most of them. But these top 10 worst TV shows of all time were enough to keep me surfing the channels for something – anything – else!

Whether you agree with the list or disagree, you have to admit that sometimes the worst TV shows make for the best entertainment. So stock up on your favorite candies, make a bag of popcorn and settle in for a cathartic, nostalgic awful TV show marathon.


68 Responses to “Top 10 Worst TV Shows of All Time”

  1. Mike on September 15th, 2008 8:50 am

    I actually thought the Man Show was brilliant

  2. Phillip Spitzer on September 17th, 2008 2:24 pm

    You are way off on the worse tv shows.There are hundreds worse than these 10.A show that either is shown one time or taken off before its night to be on.Come on try again.Shows on 3 seasons is not the worst.

  3. AWESOME 12 YEAR OLD on November 3rd, 2008 8:29 pm

    Oh come on! As an educated twelve year old, I know for sure that Three’s Company is not one of the 10 worst television shows! It was, and still is one of the best 70′s sitcoms out there. How ‘ya like them apples?

  4. Sarah on November 16th, 2008 11:23 pm

    It’s Sheffield, not Mayfield and I agree…there were WAY worse shows on tv.

  5. ellie on December 18th, 2008 1:05 pm

    are there any really good t v shows anymore. all the comedy shows are so inane with canned laughter at the stupidest remarks. way too many reality shows which really how can any one believe they are factual when they are being filmed. these should all be posted on the worst t v show lists.

  6. John on December 20th, 2008 12:58 pm

    there is no such thing as a good {so called) reality show. these idiots all act differently in front of a camera than they world act in “real life”. it is just cheap television.

  7. Biggus Rickus on December 23rd, 2008 2:25 pm

    If I were compiling this list they would all be Reality Shows, but Small Wonder would rate just behind all of them.

  8. Tiffany on January 15th, 2009 4:15 am

    Well Real World used to be a good show now like every other reality show they only have room for the really really good looking guy and girls its supposed to be real so why cant they get real looking people instead of people who look like acts and models? As for this thing with Bay Watch and The Man Show who cares if its about girls and crude jokes pull the stick out of your ass and laugh stop acting like just cause something is about sex its bad!!

  9. Mercedez on February 4th, 2009 1:47 pm

    I think some of those shows are stupid because all they do is talk,talk,talk.i really hate shows that talksa lot.i want yo see more action,fighting,something exciting!!

  10. Larry on February 9th, 2009 11:52 pm

    Man show was awesome must be a women rating these shows! Three’s company was great

  11. me on February 10th, 2009 2:09 am

    threes company is classic and youll always be internet. get bent internet

  12. Robert on February 10th, 2009 10:27 am

    What? No CBS Evening News with Katie Couric?

  13. Spectre on February 10th, 2009 6:07 pm

    Ok small wonder was the **** when i was a kid so you can take that out… .American Idol is not a fave of mine, but there are worse shows an thats not one of them… The Man show was meant to be stupid so yeah thats what made it great…. and the Antiques Show is a very good show it made me go out an look at my grandmother and great grandmother’s stuff and i found that i possess a pretty nice vase from back in the 1900s that is worth 5000.00 so dont knock that i wouldnt havent known if it wasnt for that show…

    The other shows you have listed… Are dead on especially the Nanny and i noticed you dont have Wings there…. You guys are a bit retarded for not putting on the crappiest shows.

  14. Robert Bryant on March 26th, 2009 3:44 pm

    2. ” The Chevy Chase Show”

    1. ” The Paula Poundstone Show”

    Television entertainment died in 1993. The road to cheap

    production values and low quality was started with these

    two shows. Things have never been the same…

  15. Tom Whiting on April 1st, 2009 12:11 pm

    Deep Space 9 does not belong anywhere near this list. The show took the Star Trek franchise to a whole new level. This was the first Trek where things were not all rosy. People actually didn’t get along making it much more real. And as for the 3 season long Dominion war storyline, it made you actually wonder if for once the good guys would lose. Thisshow belongs in the 10 BEST… Now if you want worst sci-fi there’s always Space 1999.

  16. Tyrone on April 2nd, 2009 11:03 pm

    whoever made this list is truly an idiot. American Idol? In the beginning that show was the bomb! And the man show was hilarious! clever jokes, not just boobs and beer(although that was good too). Hah when they did a campaign against women’s suffrage and no one knew what they meant, priceless.

    Oh ya and Antiques Roadshow is entertaining, maybe even educational, and interesting as hell.

    So Up Yours whoever made this. Probably an uptight single 35 year old woman who doesn’t own a TV set.

    Your Opinions Are Crap!

  17. femvamp on April 15th, 2009 6:11 pm

    This list is wrong. Well at least I think it is. I liked DS9. Now the best but not horrible either. Also I liked the nanny. It had its moments.

  18. lolface on April 20th, 2009 3:44 pm

    American idol #2!!!!!! WTF!!!!!! theres over 100 people that make it to hollywood, then over 20 talented people that make it on stage. thats over 20 weeks of talent for you.

  19. Myoxia Fruit on May 11th, 2009 5:41 pm

    Fat, old and/or ugly women aren’t allowed to vote, as they are jealous and biased against pretty women on TV.

    How else would 3′s Company, Baywatch and Man Show be on her list?

  20. lily on May 30th, 2009 11:20 pm

    The man show wasn’t funny. If you want to watch titties rent an xrated movie. Are men really that dumb?

  21. Bama Boy on June 12th, 2009 2:17 pm

    American idol is WAY AWESOME. it should not be on this list.

  22. Bart on July 11th, 2009 5:08 pm

    I think these would be all the shows that would not appeal to a Lesbian. Am I right Lynn?

  23. m on August 7th, 2009 12:30 am

    Just because a show is popular (american Idol) doesn’t mean it’s good. It is a competition that’s worth watching only towards the end, when people who CAN SING compete.

    I liked Baywatch even before Pamela Anderson joined and while it wasn’t the best show at that time, it was better than many…

    I agree with your assessment of Deep Space 9. I loved Star trek but I just couldn’t watch this boring show. I know that there are trekkies who love it, so I’m just offering my opinion.

    The nanny was watchable but after I while you get annoyed by Fran’s voice.. :) plus it wasn’t that funny.

  24. kenndal on August 7th, 2009 9:28 pm

    the nanny definetly doesnt belong on this list i actually thought it was the best show of the 90′s and i still cant find one better and there really is no need to call her anorexic becuase she’s not and her voice was part of the show and it was actually exagerated for the show.

    and if your going to critique please critique the show not the stars.

  25. kenndal on August 7th, 2009 9:33 pm

    its me again i was re-reading your nanny comment and if your going to down the show at least get your facts right its not mayfield its sheffield

  26. emma on August 10th, 2009 5:23 pm

    really there is soooo many shows worst than these. really american idol three’s company are you serious? And fran drescher is not anorexic she is beautiul and that voice could be annoying at times but it was exaggerated and its is not Mayfield where did you get that from? Its Sheffield and it wasn’t a pointless show it was hilarious. I would like to see your best tv shows list.

  27. Ashley on August 17th, 2009 12:44 pm

    YOU ARE WAY OFF. the nanny was a hit. It is amazing. 6 whole seasons is not a worst show. And how dare you call Fran Drescher anorexic. You are just jealous of her. And her voice is the trademark of the show. No one told you to watch it. It was funny and the best comedy ever made.

  28. John on August 18th, 2009 9:11 pm

    I’m thrilled to see that American Idol is #2 on the worst list! I can’t stand Ryan Seacrest!

  29. Ashley on August 29th, 2009 6:34 am

    I cant stand america idol either

  30. ray on September 6th, 2009 2:35 am

    Lynn Richardson…., you’re fired!

    Your list holds no true weight. You were unable to justify why any of these shows were truly the 10 worst of ALL TIME! Because they weren’t.

    Get a real Life LYNN….you obviously can’t cut it in this business…hang it up! Pack it in! save yourself the humiliation of being #1 on the worst most unjustifiable ten worst lister of all-time . Also #1 on the worst “You suck it big time” list. AND….#1 on the worst desecrator of journalistic integrity list.

  31. Jane on September 8th, 2009 5:00 pm

    LOL Max Mayfield was the director of the Hurricane Center in Miami, he now does weather for a local TV station!

    Max Sheffield was the hunka hunka smolderin luv on the Nanny. I loved the show.

    You strike me as a BBC kinda person. (GAG)

  32. you're a bitch on September 10th, 2009 4:20 pm

    what the hell is wrong with these stupid bitches saying that the man show was bad? man show was genius, it appealed to half the world for goodness’ sakes. how about putting all these stupid spin offs of the bachelor like: flavor of love, flavor of love 2, flavor of love 3, i love new york, i love new york 2, rock of love, rock of love 2, rock of love bus, real chance of love, real chance of love; back in the saddle, the bacholorette, who wants to marry a millionaire?, megan wants a millionaire, Joe millionaire, tough love, tila tequila, daisy of love, for the love of ray j, my antionio, the list goes on and on- i bet you could make a top 25 worst television shows right there. now you don’t have to bash on the man show

  33. John on September 12th, 2009 12:49 pm

    My worst top 10 shows is as follows: 1. American Idol….2. Saved By The Bell…………….3. Full House……..4. Family Matters……5. Sabrina The Teenage Witch……6. Dawson’s Creek……7. Everybody Loves Raymond…..8. Big Brother…………..9. The Cosby Show….10. Beverly Hills 90120….

  34. John on September 26th, 2009 7:09 am

    I also like to add Designing Women to my worst list!!!

  35. sweetestsadist on October 18th, 2009 6:14 am

    I hate it when people use lists as a means to satisfy of their superiority complex. If you make a list do it on technical aspects of what you are rating and not the popularity contest going on in your head.

  36. Beth on October 23rd, 2009 11:04 pm

    Who wrote this? It’s Maxwell Sheffield, not Mayfield. Do some research.

  37. Donovan Jennison on November 5th, 2009 9:14 pm

    Their are a lot worse tv shows out there. why are you leaving kid shows alone?

  38. michael on November 16th, 2009 4:13 pm

    what geniuss put the man show on the

    you wouldnt know worst if it bit ya yes the nanny sucked but who didnt

    like the juggies or the toast

  39. michael on November 16th, 2009 4:16 pm

    to the person that just said all these stupid bachulor remakes kudos bra

    your the man

  40. michael on November 16th, 2009 4:20 pm

    the person who wrote this

    you’re a bitch on September 10th, 2009 4:20 pm

    your the man. dude i hate those stupid rock of love shows

    and they have the balls to rip on the man show

    who ever said the man show sucked must be afraid of tna

  41. Nathan on November 26th, 2009 3:32 pm

    threes company – now that was bad:(


  42. neer on December 24th, 2009 12:57 pm

    i agree……..

  43. Flu-Bird on January 21st, 2010 4:25 pm

    MY WORLD AND WELCOME TO IT with WILLIAM WINDOM a crappy theme song and stupid animation,TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT him and his silly cow hand puppet,

  44. Gary B on January 29th, 2010 1:51 pm

    deep Space nine? That was hands down the best of the trek series, it was far better than Voyager. Voyager will still better than that abortion Enterprise.

    baywatch? Sure it was crap, but it also spawned baywatch nights. A show that was so bad it lost it’s mind and became some absurd X-files ripoff. I tuned into a part of the UFO episode. All i saw was Mitch making contact with a UFO and I thought “What the f** is this?” I thought it was some Hasslefoff Tv movie on the sci-fi channel.

    It’s like if they made a Gossip Girl spinoff where Jenny Humphery opens up a Private Investigation firm ivestigating paramormal cases or a show where Blair Waldorf and Vanessa Abrams join forces and travel into the future to fight time traveling aliens.

  45. Paco on February 15th, 2010 12:46 pm

    Lynn Richardson is obviously a fool who has no clue what good or bad TV is. Seriously, Three’s Company and Deep Space Nine? You should find another line of work, because this article is an absolute joke.

  46. steve on March 26th, 2010 3:05 pm

    Where the heck is Full House? All that show has is unfunny people doing common garbage and tries, but fails miserably, at making it funny. And shame on you for putting american idol on the list. Sure it has bad singers in the show, but that’s what makes it good.

    Screw You.

  47. gabrielle on March 30th, 2010 10:40 pm

    listen i have a few things to say , the nanny was not a pointless show i loved it and her voice is totally awersome and she is very talented . she is cool and u cant judge her just because she has an unusual voice you dont have to judge her that way well unless you’ve met her hehe …. the show was a teriffic show and very popular . !! thank you

  48. Green Trampoline Plea on May 2nd, 2010 5:30 am

    A little off the subject perhaps, but a request for you to think about the ethics of buying cheap trampolines. Please try and think about, for example, the materials the item is manufactured with, the conditions of the factories where they’re made and the green credentials of the retailer. Oh, and try to repair your trampoline instead of throwing away. Thanks!!!!

  49. Hollee on July 3rd, 2010 6:53 pm

    The Nanny is the best show in the world!!That list is sooooooo wrong.It should be on the best shows list.Its jacked up.I love it soo much!!

  50. adam on September 1st, 2010 4:12 pm

    who the hell wrote this list? do you even watch tv?

  51. lisi on October 3rd, 2010 2:38 am

    Are you serious? Did you really write this show without fact checking? His name is Sheffield, not Mayfield, and you’ve lost all credibility. I don’t care about your list, as you previously stated that it was subjective, but your inability to get a simple name right is weak.

  52. Lola on December 9th, 2010 11:41 pm

    What the hell you talking bout with the nanny?!?!?!?that was the best show ever!and it still is and she’s not anorexic she was just skinny that dont make you anorexic !not a worthless show its about how a woman from queens becomes a nanny and ends up marrying her employer!so thats the best show ever!!

  53. mercedez on December 12th, 2010 11:35 am


  54. Anon. on December 22nd, 2010 7:37 pm

    You know nothing. Period. You are some wanna-be film critic who couldn’t make it.

    3′s company is one of the BEST television comedies of all time, DS9 while it wasn’t a wild western were some one of your lowly intelligence can go “ooooohhhh shiny lazers!” was one of the best developed of all of the ST series, I’m guessing by the comment that you loved voyager some much that you couldn’t care less about developed characters and would rather watch shiny lazers(!) and girls in skin tight suits. Ignoring the complete lack of personality of Voyager lets look at the fact that the captain went from royal bitch to mommy figure in the span of an episode.

    As for the Nanny you are asking real life questions of a fantasy world, not to mention you expect the old lonely man to drop the sexy nanny? The reasons Max Sheffield put up with her is obvious of you even watched the show. Also, its Max Sheffield NOT mayfield. Clearly you have NEVER watched the show to pass judgment.

  55. Heather K. on December 25th, 2010 11:26 pm

    Why not describe Fran as some type of Tim Burton creation? Capitalize on her features and coloring if you’re going to poke fun… there’s plenty of fodder there.

    Describing anyone as ‘anorexic’ is just plain ignorant. Could it be that you’re just not that creative???

  56. Nenelikethenanny on January 15th, 2011 9:27 pm


  57. t bigg3469mee on April 5th, 2011 9:51 am

    I agree that “Small Wonder” or as I called it “Small Blunder” made the list. I would love to see Robocop meet V.I.C.K.I.(which was the name of the robot and blast here circuits to Kingdom Come! Here are a few other for the.list, “Out Of This World” which I called the Mork and Mindy ripoff and Easy Street with Jack WLAN.

  58. GT on April 11th, 2011 8:59 pm

    One woman’s opinion not the world’s opinon

  59. Salina on May 4th, 2011 3:49 am

    DUDE. The Nanny = Freaking Awesome. That’s like hating on I Love Lucy!

  60. Salina on May 4th, 2011 3:52 am

    Watch this have been an accident and it was actually the list of favs

  61. mii on June 11th, 2011 1:01 pm

    Lol dudeeeee you are high. The nanny was one of the most awesome tv shows ever.

  62. Kendra on July 22nd, 2011 3:36 am

    Wow ur an idiot, the Nanny still comes on u idiot, and Fran is amazing u loser. In fact the nanny is ran on two different networks, and she has a new show, just because u have no taste doesn’t meant others do, jerk. Fran had ovarian cancer throughout making the nanny! She did all that with OVARIAN CANCER, the deadliest cancer for women, before u start posting shit, make sure u do ur facts.

  63. Nanny Fanatic on August 1st, 2011 10:52 pm

    One would put my favorite show The Nanny on this list. This show had the best humor, sexual tension/romance, and I watch it all the time on TV Land and YouTube. TAKE IF OFF THE LIST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Three’s Company was great too.

  64. Nanny Fanatic on August 1st, 2011 10:53 pm

    Meant “Who” would. I was too upset LOL!

  65. anonymous on October 7th, 2011 5:51 am

    WTF?? who da F**K made this list?

  66. Geo on November 6th, 2011 1:49 am

    I agree generally, but many are worse:

    My Mother the Car

    My Favorite martian

    The Ropers


  67. Kells on December 21st, 2011 9:31 pm

    this was clearly written by a feeble minded feminist lol

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