Have you ever had a first date that went so horribly you thought you’d never recover? Well sometimes TV shows don’t always get off to the best start either. Luckily for some of the more popular ones, they eventually found their footing after a rough start. Here are some of the most successful shows that started off on the wrong foot. Maybe they’ll help you recover from that bad first date.

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Starting with one of the smallest episode orders of the time with just five, Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David’s hard to handle New York foursome had a slow first couple of seasons. By season three, however, the characters started to find their places on the show, with Kramer coming more into his own and Elaine becoming part of the inner circle instead of just being Jerry’s bitchy ex-girlfriend. The show also recast original characters early on and added great recurring ones like Puddy and Newman, whose hatred of Jerry was hilariously never explained. By season four, it was a full-blown phenomenon, with the Season 9 series finale raking in more than five times the viewers of its pilot. Too bad most of our favorite “Seinfeld” side characters are now dead.

Married… With Children
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Not everyone was a big fan of the misogynistic Al Bundy when he first premiered on Fox’s “Married with Children” in 1987. The series was a bit unprecedented for a primetime sitcom, especially one about a ladies shoe salesman who liked to make fun of women — hefty women mostly — and hate on his family. It’s blunt, unabashed sense of humor made it tough to maintain any advertising, and while the show struggled early on, people eventually embraced it for its candid approach to the American lifestyle by the fourth season. We can especially relate to the hand down the front of the pants’ position while watching TV after a long day of work at a job we detest, which is still popular today.

Breaking Bad
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Although many will say “Breaking Bad” is one of the best drama series they’ve ever laid eyes on, not nearly as many were watching the show from its inception, coming in around the third or fourth season to binge watch their way to the current one. The show started off like most dramas where the characters are everyday people, but by the third season, word had gotten out about the meth cook who went from pushover cancer-ridden chemistry teacher to hard-ass southwestern kingpin. The series finale was all anybody could talk about, going from a quiet AMC drama to a trending topic in a blink, and quadrupling in viewership compared to its premiere season.

The Walking Dead
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With a short six-episode run for its pilot season, the slow-paced, zombie-laced drama had to spend its early episodes weeding out worthless characters with poor storylines before finding out if its meandering would go anywhere. But the writers eventually got a sense of which characters worked, and if the latest Comic-Contrailer of the new season is any indication, we are in for some new exciting plot lines which will hopefully point towards where the show might end. Just don’t expect that to happen anytime soon now that “Fear the Walking Dead,” a Los Angeles-based spin-off series, has recently premiered.

The Office
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Trying way too hard to reproduce the charm of its BBC counterpart on American turf, the cast and writers of the Steve Carrell led comedy had to work through a short first season to realize what didn’t work after ripping off the British pilot. By season two, the characters were clearly better established, feuds were made a bit more clear and Michael Scott’s hair was fixed a bit, too. Slowly, each character grew a lovable identity — except Creed — for themselves. Kevin, you fat idiot, we’re even talking about you.

Parks and Recreation
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Any fan of the NBC mockumentary series “Park and Recreation” who re-watches the first season will notice the painfulness of having a show full of under-utilized characters. Chris Pratt, Nick Offerman, Adam Scott and Rob Lowe — albeit the latter two weren’t actually originally cast members — had little of the spotlight compared to Leslie and Ann Perkins, with actors like Aziz Ansari even being underused in the early episodes. Season 2 was lightyears ahead of its pilot season, and by the end of the show’s run, all the actors we just named were basically running the show.

King of Queens
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The Queens-based comedy was a poor man’s “Seinfeld” in the late ’90s, but despite its multiple miscasts early on, as well as emphasis on fat jokes, the show would eventually steal our laughs with Kevin James’ constant real-life Homer Simpson-esque lifestyle. Once they rid the show of its overly-New Yorker type unlikeable characters and Jerry Stiller’s James living in the basement, it was impossible to stop laughing.

Star Trek: The Next Generation
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After two decades of “Star Trek”-free TV, someone felt it necessary to make more, starting up in 1987 with poor character chemistry, cheap costume designs and cliche plot lines that spoiled the series in comparison to its final seasons’ ending in 1994. Eventually the show found its footing, which is difficult to do when you’re on a spaceship. You’ve got to hand it to the writers for making it work with most of the original characters.

The X-Files
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Before there was summer TV’s hottest new show, “Aquarius,” there was “Californication.” But before that was “X-Files,” featuring everybody’s favorite ’90s paranormal detective duo and a place for folks to get their Duchovny fix. Co-starring Gillian Anderson, the hot young special agents Mulder and Scully uncovered more than 200 episodes worth of monsters. The show wasn’t always as big, though, struggling to sculpt its two main characters and even more with less than high-definition shots in 1993. The show did decent in the ratings early on, but by the late ’90s, it was a full-blown cultural paranormal phenomenon.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer
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In terms of cheesy vampire mythology, the path was paved by Sarah Michelle Gellar’s sexy stake swinging in Joss Whedon’s pre-Avengers directing days of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” The original 1992 film, starring Luke Perry and Kristy Swanson, to preface the series set the tone for vampire fiction, but it took Whedon at the reins to figure out the landscape of television with his cast and the network. Though the show did alright initially, its performance was completely overshadowed by the the size of the crowd watching by the end.



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