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Author Topic: Wannabe Spinoffs  (Read 6011 times)
Menard
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« on: May 03, 2007, 09:06:56 PM »

Watching the present episode of Grey's Anatomy has me wondering if they are testing a possible spinoff. The two hour episode is spending a lot of time in another clinic where Addison has taken time off to visit with some friends, with the rest of the regular cast seeming like a background plot.

This made me think of times when TV shows have tried the idea of a possible spinoff by dedicating an episode to it, but it never gained any steam and nothing became of it.

Star Trek had the 'Asignment Earth' episode with Mister Seven. It was a tryout for a potential series, with the majority of screen time being centered around Mister Seven and his secretary.

The Nanny tried out a series concept in one episode which centered around a beauty shop, with the main cast pretty much absent other than at the beginning and end of the episode.


What TV shows do you know that tried out a series concept/spinoff with an episode dedicated to it, but nothing became of it?
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« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2007, 09:12:49 PM »

My wife is a Grey's fan.  They are trying to give Addison her own show which premieres sometime this month.  I personally am only a fan of Grey's when it focuses on the medical aspect of the show and not the soap opera characters.
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Menard
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« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2007, 09:30:24 PM »

I personally am only a fan of Grey's when it focuses on the medical aspect of the show and not the soap opera characters.


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« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2007, 09:38:36 PM »

Didn't  STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION set one episode at Starfleet Academy?
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« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2007, 07:24:38 AM »

I watched that last night as well - and was thinking the same thing.

I can't remember the name exactly but there was an attempted spin-off of the X-Files called The Lone Gunnmen(?) or something along those lines (never followed X-Files except a glance here and there at that fantastic redhead :) ).

Ah...Pinky and the Brain was a spinoff of Animaniacs, if I remember correctly.
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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2007, 07:47:51 AM »

i dont watch Greys Anatomy myself but that guy who used to star on Wings was on Craig Ferguson earlier this week and there was a lot of hush hush hinting and talking about there being a spinoff in the works. he said he couldnt talk about it and seemed genuinely shocked and uncomfortable whenever ferguson would hint at the idea. like he was going to lose the job if he confirmed anything on tv. again never watched the show myself but thought id chime in with any useful information i could provide for its fans.
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« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2007, 11:27:53 AM »

The Lone Gunmen did have their own short-lived series. Caught the "Three's Company" episode featuring the Ropers trying to buy a new house that sounds like it fits in this thread as the episode only featured the Ropers in new surroundings and not Jack and the Girls.
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« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2007, 12:52:13 PM »

The Lone Gunmen did have their own short-lived series. Caught the "Three's Company" episode featuring the Ropers trying to buy a new house that sounds like it fits in this thread as the episode only featured the Ropers in new surroundings and not Jack and the Girls.

I remember that - wasn't that one of a few spinoffs from Three's Company?  The Ropers and then there was Three's A Crowd - both sunk like lead.
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« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2007, 03:50:16 PM »

Yes you're right "The Ropers" did have their own show. Just checked IMDB to confirm it. It lasted one season and ran 28 episodes. All I recall is the one that ran on "Three's Company" which was pretty good really.
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« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2007, 04:33:28 PM »

"Joey"

 The entirely crap spin off from the possibly-sometimes-amusing-but-ultimately-not-really-that-funny (unless you're a girl) "Friends"

edit: apparently I misunderstood the question, nevermind.
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« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2007, 08:04:46 PM »

Didn't  STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION set one episode at Starfleet Academy?

Yes, "The First Duty," but it was never really intended as a possible spin-off idea. It was was more an opportunity to catch up with Wesley Crusher since former regular Wil Wheaton had agreed to return for a guest shot.

As for other shows, Angel was a spin-off of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. There was almost another spin-off focusing on the Giles character called Ripper and there was even talk of of spinning off Willow into her own series as Buffy concluded.

The updated Doctor Who has spawned a number of spin-offs: Torchwood, The Sarah Jane Adventures and another K-9 series. Of course there was that K-9 and Company show back in the 70's that never went anywhere.
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« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2007, 09:04:18 AM »

The updated Doctor Who has spawned a number of spin-offs: Torchwood, The Sarah Jane Adventures and another K-9 series. Of course there was that K-9 and Company show back in the 70's that never went anywhere.

Wasn't there also an attempt at a series called "The Stranger" starring one of the blonde haired doctors in a role virtually indistinguisable from that of the Doctor?
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« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2007, 04:30:32 PM »

Isn't the term for episodes of shows like this "backdoor pilot"?

I thought the OP was looking for episodes of shows contained within a given series that were intended as pilots for spinoffs, not just spinoffs from popular shows either while the shows are running or after they end - like say Joey.

There was an episode of The Golden Girls that focused on a middled aged Hispanic couple with Rita Moreno as the wife. I think it was reworked into Empty Nest, since they used the same set for the house. Empty Nest eventually spun off Nurses, don't remember if they did it within the show itself. If the trend had continued, I thought they were going to give all of fictional Miami sitcoms.

The Rockford Files did this with an episode featuring Isaac Hayes and Louis Gossett Jr. I wish that one had gone forward, it was a fun episode, and those two had good chemistry doing the old "feuding partners who don't see eye to eye" thing. I think they wanted to spin off Tom Selleck's Lance White character at one time, but his appearences there did lead to Magnum PI being developed. Wasn't there an episode with Dennis Duggan as a computer whiz that seemed like a potential spinoff?

Why do I remember these things? I should have been studying foreign languaged rather than filling my head with this stuff. Or learning new job skills. Or something.
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Menard
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« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2007, 04:55:16 PM »

It seems like Diagnosis Murder did this on a few occasions. I recall two episodes which focused more on the guest characters than on the regular cast.

One paired a female paralegal (Leah Remini from King of Queens) and a lawyer. They were quite a humorous and clumbsy pair.

Another featured two female police detectives. One who had a tendency to bend, if not shatter, the rules; and one who begrudgingly went along, but not without thoroughly voicing her disagreement. This one could have been interesting as a separate series or summer replacement.

Speaking of Diagnosis Murder, I would like to protest Grey's Anatomy's use of the name Mark Sloan for McSteamy. It's annoying everytime they refer to him as Dr. Mark Sloan.
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« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2007, 05:08:37 PM »

Anyone remember the episode of The Brady Bunch that focused on a neigbor couple that adopted three boys from an oprhanage - one white, one black and one Asian? That one seemed like a backdoor pilot.
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