By Kirsten Howard

As Bob’s Burgers kicks off its twelfth season, we look back at how the show achieved its long life on TV.

Bob’s Burgers has been lighting up the small screen for over a decade now, but it originally received mixed reviews and was predicted to stall early on by critics.

The show was originally developed by Loren Bouchard, the co-creator of Home Movies, and features the continuing adventures of the Belcher family and a host of local characters in their orbit.

The Belchers run a burger restaurant in a seaside community, and often struggle to get by while working long hours.

Bob Belcher is the family patriarch, and he and his wife Linda have three children called Tina, Gene, and Louise.

Bob is voiced by H. Jon Benjamin, who also leads the cast of FXX’s Archer, and the show once featured a sequence where Archer went undercover as Bob.

Amazingly, Bouchard originally envisioned the Belcher clan as cannibals, but he was pushed to scrap this element of the show while it was being crafted.

Though it’s hard to believe after ten years of success, Bob’s Burgers was not well received when it first arrived on TV.

It was almost immediately a ratings hit for Fox, but some people weren’t sold on the series right away and it took a while for them to warm up to the comedy dynamic at play in its weekly episodes.

Various critics branded it as immature, vulgar and derivative, and accused it of being a pale Family Guy imitation. They soon changed their minds!

Since then, Bob’s Burgers has won several awards, and in 2013 TV Guide ranked the series as one of the 60 Greatest TV Cartoons of All Time.

The show has also inspired a comic book series, and a Bob’s Burgers feature film is set to be released next year.

It doesn’t look like Bob’s Burgers will be wrapping up any time soon, and in fact the series seems to be going from strength to strength.