The Best And Worst Television Shows, According To Rotten Tomatoes

From network TV to streaming platforms, there are thousands of television shows available right at everyone’s fingertips. While some series earn praise for their great acting, writing, and casting, others simply miss the mark. The following television shows are some of the highest and lowest-rated among critics and fans on Rotten Tomatoes. Keep reading to see if these shows deserved their “certified fresh” or “rotten” ratings.

What We Do In The Shadows Is A Hilarious Vampire Mockumentary

harvey guillen outside at night in what we do in the shadows
FXP/MovieStillsDB
FXP/MovieStillsDB

Similar to the mockumentary style of The Office or Parks and Recreation, FX’s What We Do in the Shadows follows a group of vampires and their familiar living in the modern-day. The series, created by Flight of the Conchords’ Jemaine Clement, is a mix of supernatural fantasy and pure comedy.

What We Do in the Shadows earned an 100 percent certified fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes with the critics’ consensus reading: “Bat! What We Do in the Shadows loses no steam in a smashing second season that savvily expands its supernatural horizons while doubling down on the fast flying fun.” Fans can prepare for a third season coming later in 2021.

Hunters Was Canceled Before All The Episodes Aired

Edwina Wren dressed as a nurse in hunters
Valhalla Entertainment/Syfy
Valhalla Entertainment/Syfy

It’s rare for a show to receive a zero percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but Syfy’s Hunters received that low score. Hunters was a science fiction crime drama based on a novel called Alien Hunter; where a man (Nathan Phillips) must try and defeat the aliens who kidnapped his wife.

The show only aired a total of 13 episodes with the last six of them premiering at the network’s midnight time slot. Syfy canceled the series before the season finale aired. One fan wrote, “Hunters offers up a clumsy start to a series that so far fails to inspire…”

Search Party Has Exquisite Performances From The Entire Cast

Alia Shawkat standing at a line-up in search party
Jax Media/MovieStillsDB
Jax Media/MovieStillsDB

Search Party isn’t limited to one genre. Now airing on HBO Max, the satirical dark comedy thriller centers on a group of twentysomething friends in New York City. After they hear about a missing friend, they go to great lengths to try and find her.

The events that occur after searching for this missing woman take the series to an entirely different level. Search Party earned an 100 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes with the critics’ consensus: “Search Party is an engaging, weird, dark, funny mystery elevated by exceptional performances throughout.” Also, it was announced the show would be renewed for season five.

George Lopez Couldn’t Save Saint George

George Lopez in front of a whiteboard on saint george
Wind Dancer Productions/FX
Wind Dancer Productions/FX

Unfortunately, George Lopez hasn’t always had the best luck with his television shows. One show that did not make it past the first season was FX’s Saint George. The series ran for 10 episodes in 2014, but was canceled after low ratings and negative reviews.

That’s why it’s no surprise that Saint George earned a rare zero percent score on Rotten Tomatoes. The critics’ consensus read: “You’d need the patience of a saint to sit through an episode of Saint George, a tired sitcom with bad potty-humor jokes and thin characters.” Ouch.

Schitt’s Creek Set An Award Show Record

Catherine O'Hara in a still from schitt's creek
Pop Media Group/MovieStillsDB
Pop Media Group/MovieStillsDB

While Schitt’s Creek had a slow start, their momentum quickly picked up. With a 100 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, the series became one of the most popular of the 21st century. Schitt’s Creek made history by becoming the first show to have every principal character win for Best Lead and Supporting Actor and Actress at the Primetime Emmy Awards.

The show starred real-life father and son duo Dan and Eugene Levy, along with Catherine O’Hara, Annie Murphy, and more. It was about a family who lost everything and moved to a run-down town in the middle of nowhere.

Charlie’s Angels Didn’t Get To Air Their Season Finale

Rachael Taylor, Minka Kelly, and Annie Ilonzeh wearing white dresses on charlie's angels
Sony Pictures Television/MovieStillsDB
Sony Pictures Television/MovieStillsDB

Since Charlie’s Angels was one of the top TV shows of the ’70s and ’80s, there have been several reboots and spin-offs in the years that followed. In 2011, ABC tried to revive the series with Annie Ilonzeh, Minka Kelly, and Rachael Taylor as the new angels.

Sadly, the show didn’t work out as expected and earned low ratings. By the fourth episode, the show was canceled and they only aired seven out of their eight episodes. Charlie’s Angels has one of the lowest scores on Rotten Tomatoes with a zero percent rating.

PEN15 Brings Back Those Cringey Middle School Memories

Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle hugging in a still from pen15
Lonely Island Classics/Hulu
Lonely Island Classics/Hulu

It’s typical for a coming-of-age series to have central characters played by younger actors. PEN15 flips this on its head by having the two teenage girl leads (Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle) played by actresses in their 30s. The show follows the girls in an early 2000s middle school where the rest of the cast are actual teenagers.

PEN15 was well-received by critics and fans alike and earned a 100 percent certified fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. “An excellent showcase for Maya Erskine, Anna Konkle, and their well-cast classmates, PEN15’s sophomore season goes deeper into the nuances of middle school life without losing any of its cringey charm,” said critics.

Dads Got The Worst Reviews

Giovanni Ribisi, Seth Green, and Brenda Song in a still from dads
20th Century Fox Television/MovieStillsDB
20th Century Fox Television/MovieStillsDB

The short-lived sitcom, Dads, followed a couple of video game developers whose fathers came to live with them. Fox thought they had a hit with a stellar cast of Seth Green, Giovanni Ribisi, Brenda Song, Vanessa Lachey, and more, but most reviews were negative.

The network tried to make the show stay on as long as possible by airing all 19 episodes in the first season, but the series was canceled shortly thereafter. Dads received a zero percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes with the critics’ consensus: “A near-total disaster, Dads makes the fatal mistake of believing its racist gags can lend an edge to its aggressively predictable writing and unlikeable characters.”

Barry Is Bill Hader’s Best Role Yet

Bill Hader in a still from barry
Alec Berg Inc./MovieStillsDB
Alec Berg Inc./MovieStillsDB

Bill Hader is best known for his comedic and goofy roles on Saturday Night Live, Adventureland, and more, but Barry shows a new side to his acting abilities. As the titular character, the series follows Hader, a hitman, who decides he wants to become an actor in Los Angeles.

Rotten Tomatoes gave the show a 100 percent score, saying, “Barry follows up a pitch-perfect debut with a second season that balances darkness with comedy while steering clear of antihero overindulgence.” The acting on the show is top-notch with actors such as Henry Winkler, Anthony Carrigan, and Sarah Goldberg.

Red Flags Popped Up While Filming Rob

rob schneider and eugenio derbez in a still from Rob
From Out of Nowhere Productions/CBS
From Out of Nowhere Productions/CBS

Coming in at 11 percent on Rotten Tomatoes is the short-lived sitcom, Rob. The series aired a total of eight episodes in 2012, but was canceled due to low ratings and negative reviews. Jace Lacob from The Daily Beast called it CBS’s “worst new show.”

Rob was a sitcom centered around actor/comedian Rob Schneider, who married into a Mexican-American family. The show was heavily criticized because none of the writers, producers, and other executives were of Latin descent. This caused Rob to perpetuate harmful stereotypes about the culture that disappointed audiences.

Big Mouth Uses Dark Humor To Talk About Puberty

three animated boys smiling in a still from big mouth
Good at Bizness, Inc./Netflix
Good at Bizness, Inc./Netflix

Some of Hollywood’s funniest people lend their voices to the coming-of-age animated series, Big Mouth. The show stars Nick Kroll, John Mulaney, Jason Mantzoukas, Maya Rudolph, Fred Armisen, and more, and centers on a group of middle school students navigating puberty with the help of their hormone monsters.

Rotten Tomatoes scored Big Mouth at 100 percent with the critics’ consensus being: “Big Mouth’s simplistic animation and scatological humor belie its finely sketched characters and smart, empathetic approach to the messiness of adolescence.” Four seasons are currently available on Netflix and the show has been renewed to at least season six.

Mulaney Might’ve Copied This Popular Sitcom

John Mulaney, Martin Short, Nasim Pedrad, and more in a photo for mulaney
Broadway Video/MovieStillsDB
Broadway Video/MovieStillsDB

It’s not always guaranteed that actors with successful careers will be great in everything they do. John Mulaney has written for Saturday Night Live, performed for thousands doing stand-up comedy, and starred on numerous projects such as Big Mouth and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.

His attempt at a semi-autobiographical sitcom didn’t go well. Mulaney aired a total of 13 episodes in 2014 and 2015, but was canceled due to low ratings and poor critics reviews. The series received a 17 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes with most critics saying that Mulaney was trying too hard to be like Seinfeld.

Broad City Shows An Authentic Female Friendship

Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer standing in front of a brick wall on broad city
Paper Kite Productions/MovieStillsDB
Paper Kite Productions/MovieStillsDB

As a spin-off to their web show, Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer created Broad City based on their friendship and lives in New York City. The series ran for five seasons and was critically acclaimed as one of the best television shows of the 2010s.

Broad City earned a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes. “Led by two of the funniest women on TV, Broad City uses its stars’ vibrant chemistry to lend an element of authenticity to the show’s chaotic yet enlightening brand of comedy,” said critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

Allen Gregory Had An Unlikeable Main Character

an animated still of a boy in allen gregory
Bento Box Entertainment/Fox
Bento Box Entertainment/Fox

Allen Gregory was an animated series starring Jonah Hill, Will Forte, French Stewart, Nat Faxon, Joy Osmanski, and Cristina Pucelli, about a boy too wise beyond his years being raised by his two fathers. The show was canceled after seven episodes in 2011.

Critics on Rotten Tomatoes said, “Despite the show’s intriguing premise, Allen Gregory’s title character is too unlikeable to generate consistent laughs.” It earned a 12 percent score from critics and a nine percent audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Jonah Hill was also one of the creators behind the show.

A Beloved Actress Had Her Final Performance On Catastrophe

catastrophe
Avalon Television/MovieStillsDB
Avalon Television/MovieStillsDB

Rob Delaney and Sharon Horgan play two strangers having a baby unexpectedly in Catastrophe. They are also the writers of the show and earned several awards and lots of praise for doing both jobs. There were a total of four seasons and all are available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

Catastrophe was awarded a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes with the critics’ consensus being: “Catastrophe proves that there’s still a place for simple romantic comedy on television, as long as the actors have chemistry and the jokes are laugh-out-loud funny.” Also, Carrie Fisher’s role as Delaney’s mother was her last TV performance.

Dr. Ken Was Based On Ken Jeong’s Life

Ken Jeong as dr. ken
Sony Pictures Television/ABC
Sony Pictures Television/ABC

Fans may know Ken Jeong from roles in Community, The Hangover franchise, and Crazy Rich Asians, but he also had a sitcom based on his life. Most of his Community castmates appeared on Dr. Ken; including Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Yvette Nicole Brown, Jim Rash, and Danny Pudi.

Dr. Ken ran for two seasons on ABC, but didn’t continue due to low ratings from critics. “Somebody please get Dr. Ken a doctor; seeking any signs of life. Or humor,” said critics on Rotten Tomatoes. The series averaged about a seven percent score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Recognize This Bridgerton Star On Derry Girls?

Nicola Coughlan, Sairse Monica Jackson,  and Dylan Llewellyn in derry girls
Hat Trick Productions/Netflix
Hat Trick Productions/Netflix

Some may recognize Nicola Coughlan from Bridgerton, but she’s also on another successful Netflix show called Derry Girls. The series takes place in 1990s Ireland and focuses on a group of high school friends (Saoirse-Monica Jackson, Louisa Harland, Nicola Coughlan, Jamie-Lee O’Donnell, and Dylan Llewellyn) at their Catholic school.

Derry Girls received a 100 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes with critics saying, “A perfectly curated cast and raw writing drive Derry Girls’ dark humor as creator Lisa McGee makes frenetic light of teen life in 1990s Northern Ireland.” A third season is set to come out soon.

Kelsey Grammer Wanted Hank Taken Off The Air

Kelsey Grammer, David Koechner, Melinda McGraw, and other castmates in hank
Warner Bros. Television/MovieStillsDB
Warner Bros. Television/MovieStillsDB

The show must not be great if the lead actor thinks it’s going nowhere. According to Screen Rant, Kelsey Grammer told Jay Leno that he joked about asking ABC to take Hank off the air shortly before it was canceled. Hank was about a Wall Street executive who lost his job and reconnects with his small-town family.

The cast shot a total of 10 episodes, but only half aired on television before ABC canned the show. Hank received an 11 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes with the critics’ consensus saying: “Kelsey Grammer’s comedic gifts are wasted on Hank, a mix of unfunny gags and schmaltz that too often feels like a rehashed sitcom from the early 1980s.”

Fleabag Earned Rave Reviews

Brett Gelman and Phoebe Waller-Bridge acting on fleabag
Two Brothers Pictures/MovieStillsDB
Two Brothers Pictures/MovieStillsDB

Both seasons of Fleabag have earned perfect scores on Rotten Tomatoes. Phoebe Waller-Bridge created, starred, and wrote the tragicomedy, which was based on her one-woman play. Fleabag received worldwide acclaim from critics, audiences, and award shows for its phenomenal writing, acting, and authenticity.

“Clever and viciously funny, Fleabag is a touching, wildly inventive comedy about a complicated young woman navigating the aftermath of trauma,” said critics on Rotten Tomatoes. Some fans of the show may not know that Waller-Bridge’s sister, Isobel, writes all the music for the show.

Cavemen Was Inspired By A Geico Commercial

men dressed as cavemen on Cavemen
ABC Studios/ABC
ABC Studios/ABC

Cavemen was a spin-off of the popular Geico commercials that featured cavemen trying to live in modern society. It was a buddy comedy about three cavemen roommates (Bill English, Sam Huntington, and Nick Kroll) who share a condo in San Diego.

After its release, the Chicago Tribune cited it as one of the 25 worst TV shows ever and it was canceled shortly thereafter. A total of 13 episodes were filmed, but only six made it to air. Cavemen received a 20 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes with critics writing: “With its one-note premise and tired gags, Cavemen marks a step back in the evolution of sitcoms.”