List of television spin-offs

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A spin-off in television is a new series which contains either characters or theme elements from an old series. They are particularly common in situation comedy.

This phenomenon was already established in radio before the advent of commercial broadcast television, for example The Great Gildersleeve was a spin-off of Fibber McGee and Molly.

Television spin-offs come in several variations, including:

  • A supporting character or characters in an existing series is given their own show in which they become the main focus. The original series continues and there may be some crossover of characters between the shows on occasion (e.g. Angel from Buffy The Vampire Slayer).
  • New characters are specially incorporated into an existing series for the sole purpose of being launched into their own show that will feature no regular characters from the original series, except possibly as guest appearances (e.g. Empty Nest from The Golden Girls, or Boston Legal from The Practice).
  • Regular characters from a series continue in their own series after the original series ends (e.g. George and Mildred and Robin's Nest from Man About the House; Frasier from Cheers). This is usually done with the same actors, though not always (e.g. Trapper John, M.D.).
  • A new series is started with the same theme as an and existing in the same universe as the original series but, may not necessarily have the same characters. Examples of this type are the Star Trek, Law & Order, and CSI series. These are sometimes called franchises. The reality shows Survivor, Big Brother and The Amazing Race also operate in this manner.

One notable case which is not a spin-off is when the same series is later remade. Examples include He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983, 2002) and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987, 2003).

Many, if not all spinoffs, are produced by some of the original producers of the root show.

The current 'title holder', for spin-offs based on available information, is The Archie Show for 14 spinoff series' in 5 generations.

List of spin-offs

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