Like reboots, prequels, and sequels, spinoffs are always eyed with a healthy dose of scepticism and suspicion when they’re announced. After all, it’s surprisingly easy to reel off a list of awful movies and TV shows which have been birthed from a classic, but believe it or not, there are a fair few great ones too. Actually, many of them are on the small screen.
Better Call Saul (which serves as both a prequel and sequel to Breaking Bad) is one show which instantly springs to mind, but it’s not alone. Out on Blu-ray, Blu-ray Steelbook and DVD November 14 Season 2 of Better Call Saul is the most recent example of one great series leading to another, with enough DNA from its forebear to be obviously connected, yet with enough of its own to form a new identity.
Over the years, there have been a lot of great TV spinoffs which have revolved around characters we met in another series or simply been set in the same world. What you’ll find here then are the ten best examples of those.
10. American Dad
Family Guy was cancelled after three seasons, but strong DVD sales ensured that the series would later return more popular than ever. After that, it didn’t take long for the show to spawn a spinoff in the form of American Dad, a show set in the same world, albeit with a very different approach to storytelling.
The humour was classic Seth MacFarlane of course, but with the story revolving around a CIA agent and his family (which included an alien and talking goldfish), it was clear from the start that American Dad was something vastly different.
That possibly goes some way in explaining why it outlived fellow Family Guy spinoff The Cleveland Show, a series much closer to American Dad which never really took off.