18 Medical Dramas That Failed While ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Succeeded

Grey's Anatomy

18 Medical Dramas That Failed While ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Succeeded

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18 Medical Dramas That Failed While ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Succeeded

TV execs love them some medical drama, but not every doctor show succeeds like Grey's Anatomy. In fact, over a dozen (like NBC’s Trauma, pictured here) have flatlined since the ABC hit’s 2005 premiere.

To make this list, we consulted the list of American medical dramas on Wikipedia and limited it by the following criteria: 1) it had to have been more drama than comedy; 2) it had to have taken place in a medical center, a hospital, or at least an ambulance; 3) its protagonist had to have treated live patients (as opposed to examining dead bodies); and 4) it had to have been canceled.

Pour one out for the following failed medical dramas.

Grey’s Anatomy Season 13 airs on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

18 Medical Dramas That Failed While ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Succeeded
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1. ‘Inconceivable’ (NBC, 2005)

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1. ‘Inconceivable’ (NBC, 2005)

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Ming-Na and Angie Harmon run a fertility clinic. Canceled after two episodes, the latter of which was actually titled “Secrets and Thighs.”

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2. ‘3 lbs’ (CBS, 2006)

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2. ‘3 lbs’ (CBS, 2006)

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Stanley Tucci is a famed neurosurgeon, alongside docs played by future Royal Pains star Mark Feuerstein and Game of Thrones star Indira Varma. Canceled after three pounds episodes.

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3. ‘Saved’ (TNT, 2006)

3. ‘Saved’ (TNT, 2006)

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Tom Everett Scott plays a paramedic with a gambling problem. Elizabeth Reaser (aka Rebecca/Ava on Grey’s Anatomy) co-starred. Canceled after one season.

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4. ‘Heartland’ (TNT, 2007)

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4. ‘Heartland’ (TNT, 2007)

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The dad from Everwood plays a transplant surgeon whose ex convinces the next of kin to donate the deceased’s organs. Canceled after one season.

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5. ‘Three Rivers’ (CBS, 2009-2010)

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5. ‘Three Rivers’ (CBS, 2009-2010)

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This medical drama followed transplant stories from three perspectives: the doctor, the donor, and the recipient. Canceled after eight episodes.

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6. ‘Hawthorne’ (TNT, 2009-2011)

6. ‘Hawthorne’ (TNT, 2009-2011)

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Jada Pinkett Smith plays a Chief Nursing Officer who has a relationship with her new hospital’s Chief of Surgery. (Vanessa Bell Calloway, who played Arizona’s lawyer on Grey’s was a co-star.) Canceled after three seasons.

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7. ‘Trauma’ (NBC, 2009-2010)

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7. ‘Trauma’ (NBC, 2009-2010)

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Attractive people work as paramedics in San Francisco. Canceled after one season.

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8. ‘Mercy’ (NBC, 2009-2010)

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8. ‘Mercy’ (NBC, 2009-2010)

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Pre-Orange Is the New Black Taylor Schilling and pre-Scandal Guillermo Diaz work at a New Jersey hospital. Canceled after one season.

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9. ‘Miami Medical’ (CBS, 2010)

9. ‘Miami Medical’ (CBS, 2010)

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Hey, Miami has hospitals, too! Canceled after one season.

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10. ‘Off the Map’ (ABC, 2011)

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10. ‘Off the Map’ (ABC, 2011)

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Before Martin Henderson and Jason George played docs on Grey’s, they played docs at this Shondaland show’s jungle hospital. Its cancellation after one season was our first proof that not all Shonda touches is gold.

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11. ‘A Gifted Man’ (CBS, 2011-2012)

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11. ‘A Gifted Man’ (CBS, 2011-2012)

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Patrick Wilson stars as a neurosurgeon who has a midlife crisis enabled by the ghost of his ex-wife. Ghosted after one season.

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12. ‘Emily Owens, M.D.’ (The CW, 2012-2013)

12. ‘Emily Owens, M.D.’ (The CW, 2012-2013)

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Mamie Gummer plays a surgical intern with a penchant for sleeping with other surgical interns — except the one played by future Grey’s star Kelly McCreary. Canceled after one season.

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13. ‘The Mob Doctor’ (FOX, 2012-2013)

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13. ‘The Mob Doctor’ (FOX, 2012-2013)

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You wouldn’t know it from the title, but the doctor in this show has connections to the mob. Canceled after one season.

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14. ‘Do No Harm’ (NBC, 2012-2013)

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14. ‘Do No Harm’ (NBC, 2012-2013)

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The neurosurgeon at the heart of this show has a secret: He turns into an evil alter-ego every night at 8:25. Canceled after two episodes.

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15. ‘Monday Mornings’ (TNT, 2013)

15. ‘Monday Mornings’ (TNT, 2013)

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The surgeons’ successes and failures in this show are dissected by their peers in meetings held every… Monday morning. Canceled (on a Friday morning) after one season.

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16. ‘Black Box’ (ABC, 2014)

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16. ‘Black Box’ (ABC, 2014)

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This neurosurgeon has bipolar disorder and doesn’t want anyone finding out! Canceled after one season.

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17. ‘Red Band Society’ (FOX, 2014-2015)

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17. ‘Red Band Society’ (FOX, 2014-2015)

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Octavia Spencer oversees a pediatric facility and the cute patients therein. Canceled after one season.

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18. ‘Heartbeat’ (NBC, 2016)

18. ‘Heartbeat’ (NBC, 2016)

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Former Grey's actress Melissa George — who played Seattle Grace washout Sadie in Season 5 — plays a heart transplant surgeon with a work-life imbalance. Canceled after one season.

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TV execs love them some medical drama, but not every doctor show succeeds like Grey's Anatomy. In fact, over a dozen (like NBC’s Trauma, pictured here) have flatlined since the ABC hit’s 2005 premiere.

To make this list, we consulted the list of American medical dramas on Wikipedia and limited it by the following criteria: 1) it had to have been more drama than comedy; 2) it had to have taken place in a medical center, a hospital, or at least an ambulance; 3) its protagonist had to have treated live patients (as opposed to examining dead bodies); and 4) it had to have been canceled.

Pour one out for the following failed medical dramas.

Grey’s Anatomy Season 13 airs on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.