THE 5 STAGES OF FAN GRIEF Wednesday’s announcement of Dollhouse‘s cancellation came as no surprise to most, but that doesn’t mean that we’re not here to help those for whom the news means emotional turmoil. Let us walk you to happiness, one step at a time.

Psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, in her 1969 book On Death and Dying, introduced the concept of the Five Stages of Grief to help those dealing with personal tragedy get through it as easily as possible. We’ve discovered that those Five Stages are almost applicable to less serious emotional issues, such as the cancellation of a favorite television show. As The Aristocats‘ Thomas O’Malley once said, let me elucidate here:

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1: Denial
How many times did fans deny Dollhouse‘s falling ratings, or tell themselves that miracles could happen despite a tiny audience and uneven quality – A self-delusion not helped by the series getting a second season in the first place, admittedly – and everything could turn out okay (“Look what happens when you add in the time-shifted audience!”)? The writing may have been on the metaphorical cancellation wall for sometime, but that doesn’t mean that plenty of people were pretending that they couldn’t read when they saw it.

2: Anger
As those who’ve survived the loss of Firefly should remember, the cancellation of Dollhouse will have one clear effect on fans: Blaming Fox. Never mind that they gave the show two seasons with a promise to show the complete second season despite reruns of House getting more viewers and making them more money in the same timeslot, Fox will very clearly be the bad guy in the fan version of this story; as Preston Beckman, Fox’s VP of strategic programming told Broadcast & Cable, “I’ll still get hate mail and death threats.” But why stop there?

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I must have bad luck with TV shows, the ones I like always get cancelled, grr. I’m going to remember those steps for future cancellations 😉 What do you think of these 5 steps? What TV shows that have been cancelled did you like? Are you a Dollhouse fan?