7. Terra Nova
Rule #7: if you're not appreciated, take your business elsewhere.
Fox's Terra Nova is one of the most expensive television shows currently in production...and it is potentially still in production, despite having been canceled. Studio 20th Century Fox Television is shopping the series around to other networks for a second season—a tactic that got the Fox show (and 20th Century project) Futurama a new lease on life at Comedy Central after the quirky Matt Groening sci-fi comedy was canceled.
As attested to by The River, Stephen Spielberg's recent career in television (the Minority Report director also produces Terra Nova with fellow heavy hitter Peter Chernin) has not been a flawless one, but Terra Nova isn't necessarily dead yet, especially not if it can find enough room to cut some of its more expensive special effects. Granted, that will be a difficult task for a show whose calling card is ultra-realistic dinosaurs, but stranger things have happened.
There's more and more room on cable for big, ambitious projects like Terra Nova, and though it's got some competition from its own creators—TNT has Spielberg's Fallen Skies—it would be nice to think that the success of projects like Battlestar Galactica and Lost have generated enough confidence to sustain another series as ambitious (well, visually ambitious, anyway) as this one.
It looked for a while like low-fi sci-fi stories like Person of Interest were going to be the norm on broadcast, but there's some strained weirdness in the pipeline with 666 Park Avenue and The Neighbors coming up. Still nothing as silly, gross and weird as Fringe or as personal and ambitious as The River, but we're hopeful. Cable, meanwhile, is getting progressively more daring with series like American Horror Story, The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. Hopefully, as those shows log bigger and bigger numbers, they'll encourage more and stranger experimentation.