The best TV shows of all time

by smith-d-c | created - 29 Sep 2010 | updated - 11 Dec 2011 | Public
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1. The Twilight Zone (1959–1964)

TV-PG | 51 min | Fantasy, Horror, Mystery

9.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9/10 X  

Ordinary people find themselves in extraordinarily astounding situations, which they each try to solve in a remarkable manner.

Stars: Rod Serling, Robert McCord, Jay Overholts, Vaughn Taylor

Votes: 51,927

The Twilight Zone was awesome. The show made me think, cry, hide under the furniture, and even laugh. Each story was so well thought out and built to shocking endings. The acting, direction, music, and style of the show were superb.

Best episodes: Eye of the Beholder, Time Enough At Last, The Living Doll, Nightmare at 20,000 Feet, and The Monsters are Due on Maple Street.

2. Lost (2004–2010)

TV-14 | 44 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy

8.4
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The survivors of a plane crash are forced to work together in order to survive on a seemingly deserted tropical island.

Stars: Jorge Garcia, Josh Holloway, Yunjin Kim, Evangeline Lilly

Votes: 421,848

From Jack opening his eye to closing his eye, I was hooked. The show had the greatest ensemble cast with everyone perfect for their parts, including each guest star. The show had the best action, drama, romance, humor, and above all made me think about life, redemption, and about free will. A brilliant show from beginning to the end!

Best episodes: The Constant, Through the Looking Glass, The End, Ab Aeterno, Live Together Die Alone, Deus Ex Machina, ?, The Other 48 Days, Something Nice Back Home, Pilot, and The Man Behind the Curtain. (but you can't go wrong with any of them. You need to watch each one in order to understand.)

3. Seinfeld (1989–1998)

TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy

8.9
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The continuing misadventures of neurotic New York stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld and his equally neurotic New York friends.

Stars: Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Michael Richards, Jason Alexander

Votes: 197,705

The funniest show ever made about nothing and everything. It combines the verbal wit of Abbott and Costello with the Marx Brothers clowning. All 4 leads are superb, hilarious, and brilliantly realistic; and each episode connects each story in a brilliant farce. The show is too good to be true.

Best Episodes: (all of the them are great but don't miss the following) The Boyfriend, The Chinese Restaurant, The Outing, The Jimmy, The Soup, The Subway, The Parking Garage, The Pitch/Ticket, The Bookstore, and The Cafe.

4. The Muppet Show (1976–1981)

TV-G | 30 min | Animation, Comedy, Family

8.4
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Kermit the Frog and his friends struggle to put on a weekly variety show.

Stars: Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Richard Hunt, Dave Goelz

Votes: 17,880

A children's show? No It's the "most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, muppetatation." greatest variety show ever! Every episode leaves you in awe and wonder of how did they do that? The jokes are hilariously corny, the guest stars are all terrific, the songs and staging are wonderful, the characters are endearing and almost human, and the show is unmissable.

Best guest star episodes: John Denver, Peter Sellers, Harry Belafonte, Gilda Radner, Alice Cooper, John Cleese, Christopher Reeve, Gene Kelly, Bob Hope, George Burns - The list can go on.

5. Cheers (1982–1993)

TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy, Drama

7.8
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The regulars of the Boston bar Cheers share their experiences and lives with each other while drinking or working at the bar where everybody knows your name.

Stars: Ted Danson, Rhea Perlman, John Ratzenberger, George Wendt

Votes: 38,557

The second funniest and greatest sitcom of all time. You will love coming to this bar where you are greeted, "Norm!" and can drink all day without leaving the barstool. Ted Danson is your host and manager and Carla and Woody or Coach will serve you up a laugh with biting or simple wit. Diane will bring a sophisticated air to the conversation while Rebecca will make you feel welcome. Want some interesting facts, listen to Cliff, the mailman. He will be more than happy to share his opinions on how Richard Nixon is like a potato or get a good dose of doctor advice from Frasier and his wife Lilith. We know you will enjoy the stay and will definately be back again.

6. Blackadder Goes Forth (1989)

TV-PG | 175 min | Comedy, War

8.8
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Stuck in the middle of World War I, Captain Edmund Blackadder does his best to escape the banality of the war.

Stars: Rowan Atkinson, Tony Robinson, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie

Votes: 38,325

Start with Season 2 of Blackadder and see the greatest spoof of British History ever made. Rowan Atkinson is brilliant and Tony Robinson is stupidly hilarious. See Miranda Richardson (HP Goblet of Fire) childlike and brilliant as Queen Elizabeth Hugh Laurie (House) stupify you as Prince George in Season 3, but then watch this amazing final year, a satire of World War I. This will make you laugh, think, and then cry by the end. An amazing series.

Best Episodes: Goodbye, Captain Cook, and Speckled Jim.

7. 24 (2001–2010)

TV-14 | 44 min | Action, Crime, Drama

8.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Jack Bauer, Director of Field Ops for the Counter-Terrorist Unit of Los Angeles, races against the clock to subvert terrorist plots and save his nation from ultimate disaster.

Stars: Kiefer Sutherland, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Carlos Bernard, Dennis Haysbert

Votes: 156,548

The greatest American hero of the 21st century, Jack Bauer!! The man goes through hell and back again in a day. Be warned: once you start watching, you will have no life afterwards. The show is incredible in action, political drama and moves so quickly. Keifer Sutherland is wonderful as our lead and all the supporting cast are terrific. The best is the story not revolves around terror but all has to do with the characters and how each villain is more complex than we think.

Best Season: 1, 5, 2, and 7.

8. The X-Files (1993– )

TV-14 | 45 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

8.7
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Two FBI agents, Fox Mulder the believer and Dana Scully the skeptic, investigate the strange and unexplained, while hidden forces work to impede their efforts.

Stars: David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Mitch Pileggi, William B. Davis

Votes: 167,011

A science fiction show about faith and belief. David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson are superb and the plots will keep you on the edge. There is an overarching story of a conspiracy within the X files department involving a smoking man, Mulder's sister's alien abuction, and the will they/won't they get together tension, but the episodic episodes are just as good.

9. Fawlty Towers (1975–1979)

TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy

8.8
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Hotel owner Basil Fawlty's incompetence, short fuse, and arrogance form a combination that ensures accidents and trouble are never far away.

Stars: John Cleese, Prunella Scales, Andrew Sachs, Connie Booth

Votes: 67,700

A British hotel run by the rudest most inconsiderate, snob of a host ever, Basil, with an incompetent Spanish waiter, Manuel, his shrew of a wife, Sybil, and a put upon waitress, Polly, may not sound like a good place to stay but this brilliant British farce is hilarious for all 12 episodes.

Episodes: Basil The Rat, The Kipper and The Corpse, The Germans, The Hotel Inspectors, and Communication Problems.

10. NewsRadio (1995–1999)

23 min | Comedy, Romance

7.9
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The workplace sitcom "NewsRadio" explores the office politics and interpersonal relationships among the staff of WNYX NewsRadio, New York's #2 news radio station. Beleaguered news director ... See full summary »

Stars: Dave Foley, Stephen Root, Andy Dick, Maura Tierney

Votes: 11,368

I was flipping through the channels back in 1995 and caught the pilot of this show. This is the greatest unknown treasure ever to hit the airwaves. However, NBC didn't know what to do with it. They moved it so many times like it was a ping pong ball but I followed it wherever it went. I was hooked by Dave Foley's put upon radio news director and by his eccentric boss, Jimmy James (Stephen Root). Then Phil Hartman walked in and his sarastic wit took the show to a new tone. Then I was introduced to Lisa Miller (Maura Tierney) and fell in love with her likability and realistic tone to the insane surroundings, while Matthew (Andy Dick) performed a pratfall that was genious. The show had a brilliant way of playing with pop culture references, and timeless incredible comedy. The show was phenomenal until one day when a tragedy occurred, and the show never recovered in the 5th year.

11. Parks and Recreation (2009–2015)

TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy

8.6
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The absurd antics of an Indiana town's public officials as they pursue sundry projects to make their city a better place.

Stars: Amy Poehler, Jim O'Heir, Nick Offerman, Chris Pratt

Votes: 147,848

The fact that I didn't put this on my list was a complete mistake. Welcome to the funniest most optimistic show about local government. Amy Poehler is brilliant as the sunny but naive deputy director of Pawnee's parks department. Ron Swanson, Nick Offerman, one of the best characters ever, is the libertarian director who hates government but has a heart of gold. And that's just the start of this brilliant cast. Each scene will have you laughing hysterically. When the show began people thought it was an "Office" ripoff, nothing could be further from the truth. The Office is cynical, depressing, and mean-spirited, while Parks is the most optimistic show that I have seen this century. SAVE THIS SHOW - WATCH IT!!!

12. ER (1994–2009)

TV-14 | 44 min | Drama, Romance

7.7
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The lives, loves and losses of the doctors and nurses of Chicago's County General Hospital.

Stars: Anthony Edwards, George Clooney, Julianna Margulies, Eriq La Salle

Votes: 42,552

The best medical drama to hit the airwaves. It had a documentary like feel to placing you in each situation and man, was it tense. The cast was superb and I especially loved Noah Wyle. To me, he was the heart and soul of the show. It was his story and it seemed to be his point of view. Anthony Edwards, Sherry Stringfield, Juliana Marguilles, (later) Maura Tierney, George Clooney, and Eric LaSalle were superb but it was the Carter story that drew me in to something I could relate to.

13. The Vicar of Dibley (1994–2007)

60 min | Comedy

8.0
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A boisterous female minister comes to serve in an eccentricly conservative small town's church.

Stars: Dawn French, James Fleet, Trevor Peacock, Gary Waldhorn

Votes: 9,060

Another very funny British sitcom written by the Blackadder & Love Actually creator, Richard Curtis. This one involves a great British commedienne Dawn Lewis. It was the supporting cast of characters including a confused old man, a "boring" man, a country hick, a scatterbrained woman, an old lady who is a terrible cook, and a whole gang of eccentrics that make the show hilarious and sometimes touching. I wanted to visit Dibley after watching this show.

14. I Love Lucy (1951–1957)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

8.4
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A daffy woman constantly strives to become a star along with her bandleader husband and gets herself in the strangest situations.

Stars: Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, Vivian Vance, William Frawley

Votes: 18,968

Can a show that is almost 60 years old still be funny? Yes! The writing is brilliant and the cast is wonderful. Both Lucille Ball and Vivian Vance create classic characters that will be forever treasured. The show was groundbreaking in all ways and features the greatest physical comedy ever.

Must watch episodes include: Switching Jobs, Vitametavegimin, Grapes, William Holden, Harpo Marx, Bob Hope, John Wayne, Cheese on plane, Ballet, and Birth of Ricky.

15. The Honeymooners (1955–1956)

30 min | Comedy, Family

8.6
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A bus driver and his sewer worker friend struggle to strike it rich while their wives look on with weary patience.

Stars: Jackie Gleason, Art Carney, Audrey Meadows, Joyce Randolph

Votes: 3,808

I have heard ridiculous criticism on this show that Ralph is abusive and that he is a terrible person. Nothing could be further from the truth: Ralph loved Alice and every episode you knew he was nothing but sweet blowhard and Audrey Meadows matched Jackie Gleason every step with brilliant comebacks. Kramer was also not the first great neighbor, Ralph's Laurel to his Hardy was Art Carney, who is simply the most joyous person to watch his physical and verbal timing. All 33 episodes are hilarious classics that can never die.

Must watch: Better Life through TV, Ralph's costume, Christmas, The Convention, TV or not TV, and Golf.

16. Moonlighting (1985–1989)

TV-PG | 60 min | Comedy, Drama, Mystery

7.6
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The quirky cases of a former model and a smart aleck detective who manage a private detective agency.

Stars: Cybill Shepherd, Bruce Willis, Allyce Beasley, Curtis Armstrong

Votes: 14,686

Ah the 80s, that innocent time when shows didn't take themselves so seriously and could do comedy, mystery, and romance in one series. (although there is a new show, see #21) Bruce Willis became a great star on and off this show. The man was and is great because of his comedic timing and charm. Although the cases were not memorable, the banter between Cybil Shepherd and Bruce Willis was unmatchable. There were so many great lines and jokes throughout the series. I want this in syndication!!!

You absolutely must watch "The Taming of the Shrew" episode not only does it feature the two at their best, but frankly it's one of the greatest adaptations of the play ever done!!

17. The Prisoner (1967–1968)

TV-PG | 50 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

8.6
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After resigning, a secret agent is abducted and taken to what looks like an idyllic village, but is really a bizarre prison. His warders demand information. He gives them nothing, but only tries to escape.

Stars: Patrick McGoohan, Angelo Muscat, Peter Swanwick, Leo McKern

Votes: 10,002

A brilliant, way ahead of its time, British science fiction/mystery show that examines free will. Patrick McGoohan is terrific as the lead as he tries to escape a charming but claustrophobic environment. This show paved the way for both Lost and The X Files.

18. Whose Line Is It Anyway? (1998–2007)

TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy, Game-Show

8.6
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Improvisational comedy competition show in which four members of the regular cast as comedians and often with guest appearances with other comedians and celebrities and members of the audience perform various comic games and sketches.

Stars: Drew Carey, Colin Mochrie, Ryan Stiles, Wayne Brady

Votes: 34,345

You want to laugh at brilliant improvisation, watch this brilliant trio of performers and several awesome returning veterans. Ryan Stiles and Colin Mochrie play off each other like a married couple they know what each one will do and together they rival Laurel and Hardy as one of the greatest teams of comedy ever. Wayne Brady is like a great poet able to create wonderful music and comedy at the same time. Greg Proops has a great sarcastic wit, Brad Sherwood is like a wonderful child with a wicked sense of humor, Chip and Jeff create wonderful improv, and Drew Carey keeps the whole thing in check before it descends into chaos. This was the show I always watched over Friends and remains the funniest audience show ever.

19. Twin Peaks (1990–1991)

TV-14 | 47 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.9
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An idiosyncratic FBI agent investigates the murder of a young woman in the even more idiosyncratic town of Twin Peaks.

Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Michael Ontkean, Mädchen Amick, Dana Ashbrook

Votes: 136,001

David Lynch's weirdly but brilliant surrealistic examination of small town life is part mystery part soap opera but definately memorable television.

20. The Carol Burnett Show (1967–1978)

TV-G | 60 min | Comedy, Family

8.8
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Television show featuring skits by Carol Burnett and her comedy troupe.

Stars: Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman, Lyle Waggoner

Votes: 3,667

The great (all human) variety show of the 1970s. Carol Burnett, Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence, and (especially) Tim Conway are a phenomenal team. Each skit is brilliant and they actually create three dimensional characters in the context. I must say though that the show went from good to amazing when Tim Conway was added to the cast. He is one of the greatest physical comedians ever. The skits and jokes are still hilarious.

21. Frasier (1993–2004)

TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy

8.0
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Dr. Frasier Crane moves back to his hometown of Seattle, where he lives with his father, and works as a radio psychiatrist.

Stars: Kelsey Grammer, Jane Leeves, David Hyde Pierce, Peri Gilpin

Votes: 60,595

Perhaps the greatest spin-off series ever! Frasier Crane from Cheers comes to Seattle to host a radio show and takes in his father after an accident. That's the plot but what follows is sophisticated verbal comedy at it's finest. Kelsey Grammar was terrific on Cheers but here he is phenomenal. David Hyde Pierce matches him, almost copying him, perfectly. The show featured stories that were written like stage farces and left at the top of its game.

22. Fringe (2008–2013)

TV-14 | 46 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

8.4
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An F.B.I. agent is forced to work with an institutionalized scientist and his son in order to rationalize a brewing storm of unexplained phenomena.

Stars: Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, John Noble, Jasika Nicole

Votes: 193,815

The show was first thought to be an X files rip-off but it in fact better because the actors don't take the situations as seriously. John Noble is wonderful as the crazy Walter Bishop. The chemistry between the leads is apparent and the show takes you on a wild ride each week.

23. Castle (2009–2016)

TV-14 | 43 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

8.2
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After a serial killer imitates the plots of his novels, successful mystery novelist Richard "Rick" Castle receives permission from the Mayor of New York City to tag along with an NYPD homicide investigation team for research purposes.

Stars: Nathan Fillion, Stana Katic, Susan Sullivan, Jon Huertas

Votes: 126,199

This new mystery show really surprised me. I had seen the plot before and could guess the murderer, but the teaming of Castle, Nathan Fillion, and Beckett, Stana Katic, was sensational! I love watching these two (who obviously should get together) banter, gaze at each other, get close, and solve crimes together. The thing is it's not that the writers are pushing them together, it's just that both have a naturalness, likability, and intelligence that drew me in to root for them. Nathan is terrific and I expected this, but Stana Katic is the key and is incredible in every scene. I love watching her think and react to each quip and situation. She is so cool. The show is just fun and the supporting cast is great as well.

24. Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000– )

TV-MA | 28 min | Comedy

8.7
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The life and times of Larry David and the predicaments he gets himself into with his friends and complete strangers.

Stars: Larry David, Cheryl Hines, Jeff Garlin, Susie Essman

Votes: 76,552

Larry David, the real George Costanza of Seinfeld, plays a misanthrope character who constantly gets into arguments and fights over the littlest things. A more rated "R" version of Seinfeld with a much darker edge, but equally hilarious with a more improvisational style and documentary feel. THE FUNNIEST SHOW EVER on HBO pay cable television.

25. Family Ties (1982–1989)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

7.2
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Chronicles liberal ex-hippies Steven and Elyse Keaton, their conservative son Alex, daughters Mallory and Jennifer, and later, youngest child Andrew.

Stars: Michael J. Fox, Michael Gross, Meredith Baxter, Justine Bateman

Votes: 12,936

The parents were supposed to be the stars (although Michael Gross is quite good) but Michael J. Fox rightly became the breakout actor. I also loved Mallory wonderfully played by Justine Bateman. Bateman and Fox were wonderful together and the show was hilarious and filled with heart. This was also my first introduction to Tom Hanks (absolutely amazing performance as the troubled uncle) and Geena Davis (wonderful as the ditsy housekeeper). There are classic episodes including turning the house into a hotel, the theatrical episode with the death of Alex's friend, the alcoholic uncle with Tom Hanks, and the meeting of Ellen (Tracy Pollan) in which actors' chemistry takes a new form. A great show that really deserves a much higher rating.

26. Night Court (1984–1992)

TV-14 | 30 min | Comedy

7.7
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An eccentric fun-loving judge presides over an urban night court and all the silliness going on there.

Stars: Harry Anderson, John Larroquette, Richard Moll, Charles Robinson

Votes: 7,956

This was the craziest, most hilarious, and most heartwarming show that ever was. Harry Anderson was terrific as Judge Stone and John Laroquette was great as Dan. Although the women characters came and went, my favorite Ellen Foley, the men characters remained constant. A great sitcom that holds up very well.

27. The Office (2005–2013)

TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy

8.8
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A mockumentary on a group of typical office workers, where the workday consists of ego clashes, inappropriate behavior, and tedium.

Stars: Steve Carell, Jenna Fischer, John Krasinski, Rainn Wilson

Votes: 237,390

A funny but depressing comedy that took this decade to a new form. Steve Carrell is brilliant and the supporting cast is wonderful. The Jim/Pam story is charming and romantic while Dwight is hilariously evil. The main difference between the American and British versions is that Michael Scott is incompetent but means well, whereas I find David Brent just mean and incompetent. Also the supporting characters are better fleshed out on the American version and there are degrees of hope.

28. The Cosby Show (1984–1992)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family, Romance

7.4
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The goings-on in the life of a successful African American family.

Stars: Bill Cosby, Phylicia Rashad, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Malcolm-Jamal Warner

Votes: 27,129

For six years this was the best sitcom ever on television. Bill Cosby's humor was timeless and relatable to any family. All the children were terrific performers and the stories, such as the death of a goldfish, Theo learning about the "real world", Theo getting an earing, Rudy's slumber party, and the fantastic pilot episode are classics. (Then Olivia came and ruined it.)

29. Mary Tyler Moore (1970–1977)

TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy

8.2
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The lives and trials of a young single woman and her friends, both at work and at home.

Stars: Mary Tyler Moore, Edward Asner, Gavin MacLeod, Valerie Harper

Votes: 5,271

The mother of the workplace comedy series with completely perfect writing and chemistry between the cast. The show contained so much heart and humor which still can't be equalled.

30. Happy Days (1974–1984)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family, Music

7.5
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The Cunningham family live through the 1950s with help and guidance from the lovable and almost superhuman greaser, Fonzie.

Stars: Ron Howard, Henry Winkler, Marion Ross, Tom Bosley

Votes: 12,832

The show only "jumped the shark" after Richie joined the army because Ron Howard was the heart of the show, as was Donny Most as Ralph. Henry Winkler was superb and I will never forget the episode where he goes blind. In addition, spending time with the Cunningham's was one of the delights. RIP Tom Bosley.

31. All in the Family (1971–1979)

TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy, Drama

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A working class bigot constantly squabbles with his family over the important issues of the day.

Stars: Carroll O'Connor, Jean Stapleton, Rob Reiner, Sally Struthers

Votes: 11,603

My favorite bigot on TV. Archie Bunker, played by the great Carroll O'Connor, made us laugh at ourselves and the absurdity of politics and the show still has that timeless quality which all the cast worked to show the difficulties in a family that can still love each other at the end of the day.

32. Doctor Who (1963–1989)

TV-PG | 45 min | Adventure, Drama, Family

8.5
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The adventures of a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey known only as the Doctor, who travels through time and space fighting monsters and other villainous megalomaniacs with companions.

Stars: William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker

Votes: 29,657

Tom Baker will always be my favorite. I loved watching the cheesy special effects but knew that the story was always involving and well written. The new series is also great and particularly Christopher Eccleson and David Tennant created memorable characters.

33. Get Smart (1965–1970)

TV-G | 25 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

8.3
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Bumbling Maxwell Smart, Agent 86 for CONTROL, battles the evil forces of KAOS with the help of his competent partner Agent 99.

Stars: Don Adams, Barbara Feldon, Edward Platt, Robert Karvelas

Votes: 8,840

A sophisticated spoof of secret agents and spies with a clumsy but rather intelligent hero in Maxwell Smart, played by the hilarious nasal voiced Don Adams, and a perfect partner in 99, played by the gorgeous Barbara Feldon. The show was great because it was a comedy which you could take seriously with semi-realistic plots, tons of action, and real threats to our characters. It has a timeless quality that can be appreciated even today.

34. Batman (1966–1968)

TV-G | 25 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

7.5
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The Caped Crusader and his young ward battlle evildoers in Gotham City in a bombastic 1960s colorized and updated versions of the 1940's black and white tv show based of the comic book hero's exploits.

Stars: Adam West, Burt Ward, Alan Napier, Neil Hamilton

Votes: 14,875

Christian Bale and all the Batman's pale to Adam West because he didn't treat the character so seriously. The show was so much fun and filled with great campy performances by Cesar Romero, Burgess Meridith, and Frank Gorshin. It was my first exposure to the character and as an adult the show is even wittier.

35. The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Show (1978–1985)

90 min | Animation, Comedy

8.2
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The continuation of the old Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Hour that had bounced around between ABC, NBC, CBC, and CBS. This series became infamous for editing the violence out of the Warner ... See full summary »

Stars: Mel Blanc, June Foray, Larry Storch

Votes: 695

Saturday mornings for me as a child revolved around watching this show. I loved every character but Bugs was always my favorite, although I appreciate Daffy more as an adult. Nothing will ever top it for a Saturday morning cartoon!

36. The Monkees (1966–1968)

30 min | Comedy, Music

7.5
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The misadventures of a struggling rock band.

Stars: Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork, Michael Nesmith

Votes: 2,930

Here they come walking down the street. Mickey, Davy, Peter, and Mike all had terrific comic and musical abilities. The music is still classic and great and the show, heavily influenced by the Beatles developed its own original style.

37. The Untouchables (1959–1963)

50 min | Action, Crime, Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Special Agent Eliot Ness and his elite team of incorruptable agents battle organized crime in 1930s Chicago.

Stars: Robert Stack, Walter Winchell, Nicholas Georgiade, Paul Picerni

Votes: 1,791

Robert Stack was terrific as Elliot Ness and the series still holds up as a great influential gritty drama.

38. NYPD Blue (1993–2005)

TV-14 | 45 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Detectives from NYPD's 15th squad investigate homicides within their precinct. An Emmy award winning series.

Stars: Dennis Franz, Jimmy Smits, Gordon Clapp, James McDaniel

Votes: 9,691

This was a great groundbreaking series when it first aired. Dennis Franz always was terrific and the rest of the cast was great. The show had an immediacy like a documentary and the stories were well written.

39. Carnivàle (2003–2005)

TV-MA | 55 min | Drama, Fantasy, Mystery

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

During the Great Depression, an Oklahoma farm boy and a charismatic minister learn that they are key players in a proxy war being fought between Heaven and Hell.

Stars: Michael J. Anderson, Adrienne Barbeau, Clancy Brown, Debra Christofferson

Votes: 37,563

I caught this for free on HBO and thought it was kind of like Twin Peaks in its weirdness but I loved the show. The acting, writing, and characters were terrific.

40. The Fugitive (1963–1967)

51 min | Adventure, Crime, Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A doctor, wrongly convicted for a murder he didn't commit, escapes custody and must stay ahead of the police to find the real killer.

Stars: David Janssen, William Conrad, Barry Morse, Paul Birch

Votes: 2,558

The movie did great justice to why this series is terrific. David Jansen is our everyman who comes close to being caught in each episode but it is his obsession with finding the "one armed" man which is so memorable.

41. Animaniacs (1993–1998)

TV-Y7 | 21 min | Animation, Comedy, Family

7.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Ensemble cast of off-the-wall Warner Brothers characters, appearing in a wide variety of roles. Wakko, Yakko, and Dot Warner, are WB Studio creations who were just too "zany" to be of any ... See full summary »

Stars: Rob Paulsen, Jess Harnell, Tress MacNeille, Frank Welker

Votes: 17,691

Yakko, Wacko, and Dot were heavily inspired by the Marx Brothers and the writing was terrific. The songs were wonderful and the supporting characters, especially Pinky and the Brain were terrific.

42. The Rockford Files (1974–1980)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The cases of an easy going ex-convict turned private investigator.

Stars: James Garner, Noah Beery Jr., Joe Santos, Luis Delgado

Votes: 5,381

James Garner is at his most charming and the stories are well-written and completely suspenseful and believable. A great show of another era whose influence is still felt today.

43. Star Trek (1966–1969)

TV-PG | 50 min | Action, Adventure, Mystery

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Captain James T. Kirk and the crew of the Starship Enterprise explore the galaxy and defend the United Federation of Planets.

Stars: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, Nichelle Nichols

Votes: 59,266

You think I could forget one of the most important shows of all time. The sets and special effects may be dated but the thematic stories of Gene Roddenbery and especially the chemistry of the cast made this one of the greatest science fiction shows in history.

44. Perry Mason (1957–1966)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

The cases of a master criminal defense attorney, handling the most difficult of cases in the aid of the innocent.

Stars: Raymond Burr, Barbara Hale, William Hopper, Ray Collins

Votes: 3,624

This is still one of the greatest law shows ever done. Raymond Burr is completely commanding presence as Perry Mason. The cases are fascinating and it was one of the first shows that got the details right of being in a courtroom. There would be no "Law and Order" without this show.

45. The Sopranos (1999–2007)

TV-MA | 55 min | Crime, Drama

9.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.2/10 X  

New Jersey mob boss, Tony Soprano, deals with personal and professional issues in his home and business life, which affects his mental state and ends up seeking professional psychiatric counseling.

Stars: James Gandolfini, Lorraine Bracco, Edie Falco, Michael Imperioli

Votes: 219,598

As much as I can't stand extreme violence, foul language, or nudity on TV, the modern TV programs wouldn't even try for realism if it wasn't for this HBO show that portrayed the problems of being a mobster. The shows were always superb in acting, writing, and production and the cast was terrific.

46. Once Upon a Time (2011– )

TV-PG | 44 min | Adventure, Fantasy, Romance

7.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A young woman with a troubled past is drawn to a small town in Maine where fairy tales are to be believed.

Stars: Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison, Lana Parrilla, Robert Carlyle

Votes: 187,074

A terrific new series from the writers of Lost (look for many Lost references) about a curse that transforms fairy tale characters to a modern small town in Maine. The entire cast is excellent and well chosen, my favorite is Lana Parilla's wicked queen (Regina). The production design, music, and direction are superb and the show has a more family oriented tone than Lost. I look forward to this show every week and pray it doesn't end up in Flashforward's fate.

47. Three's Company (1976–1984)

TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The misadventures of two women and one man living in one apartment and their neighbors.

Stars: John Ritter, Joyce DeWitt, Suzanne Somers, Richard Kline

Votes: 9,515

Critics didn't get this fun escapist show from the 1970s, but the episodes are written as classic bedroom farces. John Ritter had a terrific sense of timing and the entire cast worked well together. I actually prefer the Terri years to the Chrissy years because her character had more depth and interest, and many of these episodes are hysterical. My favorite is when Jeffrey Tambor was a psychiatrist who seemed crazier than his patients.

48. Dharma & Greg (1997–2002)

TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy, Romance

6.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A free spirited yoga instructor finds true love in a conservative lawyer and they got married on the first date. Though they are polar opposites; her need of stability is fulfilled with him, his need of optimism is fulfilled with her.

Stars: Jenna Elfman, Thomas Gibson, Joel Murray, Mimi Kennedy

Votes: 25,159

What a charming and completely believable couple! The characters were well thought out and three dimensional, the situations were hilarious, but the real charm was the romance between the two. A very good show.

49. Flashforward (2009–2010)

TV-14 | 42 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A special task force in the FBI investigates after every person on Earth simultaneously blacks out and awakens with a short vision of their future.

Stars: Courtney B. Vance, Joseph Fiennes, Jack Davenport, Zachary Knighton

Votes: 55,872

I will never understand how ABC let this show slip to cancellation. The show was exciting and a great metaphor of fate. Then they postponed the show and nobody came back to watch it. This should have run as Lost did in the full episodes, not broken up. What a stupid waste of a great show!

50. Alias (2001–2006)

TV-14 | 42 min | Action, Drama, Mystery

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Sydney Bristow is an international spy recruited out of college, and trained for espionage and self-defense.

Stars: Jennifer Garner, Ron Rifkin, Carl Lumbly, Kevin Weisman

Votes: 39,755

It started amazing overtime it became good. But Jennifer Garner was amazing.

51. Six Feet Under (2001–2005)

TV-MA | 55 min | Comedy, Drama

8.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

A drama series that takes a darkly comical look at members of a dysfunctional California family that runs an independent funeral home.

Stars: Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall, Frances Conroy, Lauren Ambrose

Votes: 101,401

The other superb HBO series that brought a unique visual style to a dysfunctional family who own a funeral home. Each episode was very well written and featured feature film like style with a terrific Thomas Newman theme and surreal otherworldly style.

52. The Streets of San Francisco (1972–1977)

60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A veteran cop with more than 20 years of experience is teamed with a young Inspector to solve crimes in San Francisco.

Stars: Karl Malden, Michael Douglas, Reuben Collins, Richard Hatch

Votes: 3,932

Karl Malden and Michael Douglas were terrific in this gritty 70's police drama.

53. Tales of the Gold Monkey (1982–1983)

60 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

The adventures of a 1930's Pacific Islands bush pilot and his companions.

Stars: Stephen Collins, Jeff MacKay, Marta DuBois, John Calvin

Votes: 1,116

As an Indiana Jones fan, I loved this series. The stories were exciting and the action was good. This is an underrated forgotten classic.

54. Laverne & Shirley (1976–1983)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The misadventures of two single women in the 1950s and '60s.

Stars: Penny Marshall, Cindy Williams, David L. Lander, Michael McKean

Votes: 4,679

The chemistry worked on camera (even though it didn't off camera.) There are many classic episodes which hold up.

55. New Girl (2011– )

TV-14 | 22 min | Comedy

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

After a bad break-up, Jess, an offbeat young woman, moves into an apartment loft with three single men. Although they find her behavior very unusual, the men support her - most of the time.

Stars: Zooey Deschanel, Jake Johnson, Max Greenfield, Hannah Simone

Votes: 155,228

It's early in the year but this show is the funniest new show since Parks and Recreation. Zooey Dashanel is "adorkable" as Jess and the roomates has excellent chemistry. Two episodes made me laugh so hard that I fell off the chair: Naked and Cece Crashes. It was an instant hit with FOX and I expect will be around for a long time.