The Disney Channel has been home to some great shows over the years. They include hits like Hannah Montana, Jessie, Wizards of Waverly Place and more. They've launched scores of stars and managed to connect with tweens well. Yet, over the years, the network has also created some downright weird shows that one marvels at.
It's one thing for animation, you expect weird shows there. But the live-action comedies are crazier in the plotlines, mixing sci-fi and fantasy stuff in a typical sitcom plot. There are also a few dramas that are darker and more mature than the usual Disney Channel fare. Here are ten strange Disney Channel shows you may have forgotten about to prove this network is no stranger to the odd series for the tweens that still become successful.
10. Just Roll With It
A sitcom where even the actors have no idea what's coming is an intriguing concept. This show would have a standard plotline interrupted by a loud horn. The audience would then vote on what would happen next, and the actors would have to "just roll with it." That led to crazy stuff as the actors were often doused in paint and food, put through insane stunts, and more madness. It was a wilder-than-usual show, even if it didn't get as much attention as other series, and the improv aspect made it rise above the cookie-cutter sitcoms Disney usually put out.
9. Andi Mack
This show stood out for a plotline more fitting for the CW or Freeform than Disney Channel. Peyton Elizabeth Lee starred in the title role of a teenager whose life is turned upside down when she learns the family secret: Her older "sister" Bex is actually her birth mother. As Andi tries to deal with her "mom" being her grandma and other turns, she also has to handle the usual challenges of puberty, her first crush, school problems, and more. That parental setup alone made this a standout series, along with more mature storylines, so the idea it was on Disney Channel, of all places, is bizarre.
8. So Random!
Sonny With a Chance was a big Disney Channel hit with Demi Lovato as an actress in a sketch comedy show. When Lovato left Disney under a cloud, the decision was made to spin the show-within-a-show So Random into its own series. The trick was the actors weren't playing themselves but their characters hosting this sketch show with real-life stars appearing. There was even an explanation that Sterling Knight's character had been moved from his teen drama to this show. Maybe that aspect was why it only lasted one season, as trying to have actors doing two performances at once was too much for a sketch series.
7. So Weird
With a title like that, it's no surprise it's on this list. One of many shows following the path of The X-Files, it focused on a teenage girl who travels with her rock star mother into various cities. Along the way, she runs into aliens, time travelers, Bigfoot, vampires and other paranormal activities. Somehow, she never finds actual proof of what happened but keeps trying. The show was darker than other fare amid its three-season run and even survived the lead actress leaving and being replaced by a different character. It was a good series yet still unusual for the Disney Channel.
6. Dog With a Blog
The title is what folks might remember more than the show's actual plot, which was nutty enough. The typical quirky Disney Channel family is thrown when the kids discover their dog is capable of human speech. Even nuttier is the dog himself writes about the family's exploits in a blog, with readers assuming the "I'm a talking dog" thing is a joke. The effects of the pup speaking were a bit jarring, not to mention combined with the kids' antics. That it ran three seasons is impressive, given how unlikely a show it was.
5. Best Friends Whenever
Another show that took a sci-fi theme, the title refers to two quirky best friends who are caught up in a classmate's science experiment. That gives them the ability to travel through time, jumping into their bodies in the past. There was a strange subplot of them being held prisoner in the future but still treating time travel as a wild lark. The antics of the scientist, his goofy friend, and his twin brothers just added to the odd goings-on. The two leads were fun in making this weird concept work better than it should have.
4. Phil of the Future
Disney sure did love their time travel motifs in shows and movies. This sitcom focused on a family from the 22nd century who took a "vacation" to the present, only for their time machine to break down. They thus pose as a regular family while figuring out a way to fix it. Phil adapted easily to the 21st century while his little sister goes from pulling pranks to plotting to take over the world. The jokes about the future setting could be fun (celebrating holidays that wouldn't be invented for decades), and Aly Michalaka as Phil's friend brought some nice charm to the series.
3. The Jersey
Sports fans may have gotten a kick out of this one, yet the plotline was peculiar. A group of kids find an old-styled jersey which, without warning or control, causes them to jump into the body of a famous sports star. Real-life stars like Donovan McNabb, Terrell Owens, Kurt Warner, Peyton Manning, and more played themselves with the touch of acting like a kid was controlling them. It was a weird way for viewers to learn life lessons as somehow the experience taught the kids and made for one of the odder celebrity-filled TV shows ever.
2. Fast Layne
It's no surprise this show is forgotten, given it only lasted eight episodes. Intended as a reboot of the Herbie franchise, it centered on a girl all about schedules and being on track. She stumbled onto a super-intelligent talking car that takes her on adventures, breaking her out of her funk while trying to escape forces out to capture it. The FX were odd, along with the attempts to sell the car as a living being, so little wonder this show ran out of gas quickly.
1. Adventures in Wonderland
It makes sense a series based on Lewis Carrol's book makes little sense. Alice (A young Elisabeth Haronis) enters a magic mirror to step into the crazy Wonderland. The White Rabbit goes around on rollerblades, Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum do rap numbers and a strange mix of puppets like the Cheshire Cat and quirky characters abound. There were lessons on how to handle life and issues and some fun songs, yet still a strange show which fit the source material.