Primetime Emmy Award Winning Drama Series

by cinematwat | created - 06 Sep 2012 | updated - 06 Sep 2012 | Public
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1. Pulitzer Prize Playhouse (1950–1952)

60 min | Drama

8.0
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Dramatic anthology series presenting plays adopted from Pulitzer Prize winning stories, plays, novels, et cetera.

Stars: Elmer Davis, Charles Dingle, Richard Bishop, Joan Chandler

Votes: 18

2. Studio One in Hollywood (1948–1958)

60 min | Drama

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

A pinnacle of the Golden Age of Television, "Studio One" presented a wide range of memorable dramas and received eighteen Emmy nominations and five wins during its prestigious nine-year run... See full summary »

Stars: Betty Furness, Paul Brinson, Paul Branson, Mary Sinclair

Votes: 171

3. Robert Montgomery Presents (1950–1957)

60 min | Drama

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

Actor, Producer, and Director Robert Montgomery introduced each telecast, sometimes interviewing one of the stars, and sometimes appearing in the play.

Stars: Robert Montgomery, John Newland, Vaughn Taylor, Elizabeth Montgomery

Votes: 67

4. The United States Steel Hour (1953–1963)

60 min | Comedy, Drama

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

Live drama series that was one of the best television shows ever shown. Over two hundred live plays, covering all aspects of society, were shown.

Stars: Richard Kiley, Betsy Palmer, Hans Conried, Jeff Donnell

Votes: 90

5. Producers' Showcase (1954–1957)

90 min | Drama, Musical, Comedy

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

This program aired once every fourth week, and was one of the most costly live shows of the 1950s. Many stars appeared on this show.

Stars: Cyril Ritchard, Claire Bloom, Mary Martin, David Wayne

Votes: 69

6. Gunsmoke (1955–1975)

TV-PG | 60 min | Western

8.0
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Marshal Matt Dillon keeps the peace in the rough and tumble Dodge City.

Stars: James Arness, Milburn Stone, Amanda Blake, Ken Curtis

Votes: 3,882

7. Playhouse 90 (1956–1961)

90 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

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

Of the many anthology series, Playhouse 90 is considered the most ambitious with outstanding talent in front of the camera. Attracting top ranked directors and scripts it was often filmed live including the entire first season.

Stars: Richard Joy, Charles Bickford, Kim Hunter, Malcolm Atterbury

Votes: 221

8. Goodyear Theatre (1957–1960)

30 min | Drama

7.2
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Add a Plot

Stars: Robert Ryan, Jane Powell, David Niven, Peter Leeds

Votes: 32

9. Hallmark Hall of Fame (1951– )

Comedy, Drama

8.3
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Probably the longest-running anthology series on television, the "Hallmark Hall of Fame" has been presenting television dramatizations of famous plays and books, as well as original programs especially written for the series, since 1951.

Votes: 249

10. The Defenders (1961–1965)

60 min | Drama

8.2
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A father and son lawyer duo take a variety of cases that often deal with the important issues of the day.

Stars: E.G. Marshall, Robert Reed, Polly Rowles, Ossie Davis

Votes: 273

11. Mission: Impossible (1966–1973)

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

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An elite covert operations unit carries out highly sensitive missions subject to official denial in the event of failure, death or capture.

Stars: Peter Graves, Barbara Bain, Greg Morris, Peter Lupus

Votes: 6,171

12. NET Playhouse (1964–1972)

90 min | Biography, Drama, History

7.9
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American television anthology series of wide range of genres - from history and drama to fantasy and science fiction. Fiction novels, stories, stage-plays, fairy-tales and actual historic events are dramatized in each stand-alone episode.

Stars: Rene Auberjonois, Irene Dailey, George Voskovec, Richard Dysart

Votes: 18

13. Marcus Welby, M.D. (1969–1976)

60 min | Drama

7.2
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The show is about doctors Marcus Welby, a general practitioner and Steven Kiley, Welby's young assistant. The two try to treat people as individuals in an age of specialized medicine and ... See full summary »

Stars: Robert Young, James Brolin, Elena Verdugo, Pamela Hensley

Votes: 1,011

14. The Bold Ones: The Senator (1970–1971)

60 min | Drama

8.0
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Hays Stowe is a new senator who comes to Washington DC with his wife Erin and daughter Norma. He arrives full of optimism that being on the side of justice can help him change things for ... See full summary »

Stars: Hal Holbrook, Michael Tolan, Kate Hawley, Sharon Acker

Votes: 51

15. Elizabeth R (1971– )

85 min | Biography, Drama

8.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

When Elizabeth Tudor comes to the throne, her (male) advisers know she has to marry. Doesn't she? Thus starts a decades-long political/ matrimonial game, during an age of high passions and high achievement.

Stars: Glenda Jackson, Ronald Hines, Robert Hardy, Stephen Murray

Votes: 1,305

16. The Waltons (1971–1981)

TV-G | 60 min | Drama, Family, Romance

7.6
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The life and trials of a 1930s and 1940s Virginia mountain family through financial depression and World War II.

Stars: Jon Walmsley, Mary Beth McDonough, Eric Scott, Judy Norton

Votes: 4,374

17. Upstairs, Downstairs (1971–1975)

60 min | Drama

8.4
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The trials of the British aristocratic Bellamy family and their household staff.

Stars: Gordon Jackson, David Langton, Jean Marsh, Angela Baddeley

Votes: 2,218

18. Police Story (1973–1979)

120 min | Action, Crime, Drama

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

Classic anthology series, which details the personal lives of the men and women of the Los Angeles Police Department. The stories ranged from highly dramatic to extremely funny. Even though... See full summary »

Stars: Scott Brady, Mel Scott, Don Meredith, Joe Santos

Votes: 601

19. The Rockford Files (1974–1980)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.1
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The cases of an easy going ex-convict turned private investigator.

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

Votes: 5,465

20. Lou Grant (1977–1982)

TV-PG | 60 min | Drama

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

The trials of a former television station manager, turned newspaper city editor, and his journalist staff.

Stars: Edward Asner, Robert Walden, Mason Adams, Jack Bannon

Votes: 1,303

21. Hill Street Blues (1981–1987)

TV-14 | 60 min | Drama

8.2
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The lives and work of the staff of an inner city police precinct.

Stars: Daniel J. Travanti, Michael Warren, Bruce Weitz, James Sikking

Votes: 5,687

22. Cagney & Lacey (1981–1988)

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

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Two female police detectives cooperate with each other both in their professions and in their personal lives.

Stars: Tyne Daly, Sharon Gless, Al Waxman, Martin Kove

Votes: 2,415

23. L.A. Law (1986–1994)

46 min | Drama

7.0
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The lives and work of the staff of a major Los Angeles law firm.

Stars: Corbin Bernsen, Jill Eikenberry, Alan Rachins, Michael Tucker

Votes: 3,400

24. Thirtysomething (1987–1991)

60 min | Drama, Romance

7.4
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Hope and Michael are a married couple in their thirties, living in Philadelphia, and struggling with everyday adult angst. Michael runs an ad agency with his friend Elliot, whose marriage ... See full summary »

Stars: Timothy Busfield, Polly Draper, Mel Harris, Peter Horton

Votes: 1,770

25. Northern Exposure (1990–1995)

60 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

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

A newly graduated doctor is required to set up his practice in an eccentric Alaskan town.

Stars: Rob Morrow, Janine Turner, Barry Corbin, John Cullum

Votes: 12,985

26. Picket Fences (1992–1996)

120 min | Crime, Drama, Family

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An aging Sheriff tries to keep the peace in a small town plagued by bizarre and violent crimes.

Stars: Kathy Baker, Tom Skerritt, Lauren Holly, Costas Mandylor

Votes: 3,316

27. 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.

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

Votes: 9,779

28. ER (1994–2009)

TV-14 | 44 min | Drama, Romance

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

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: 43,260

29. Law & Order (1990–2010)

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

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

Follows a crime, usually adapted from current headlines, from two separate vantage points, the police investigation and the prosecution in court.

Stars: Jerry Orbach, Jesse L. Martin, Dennis Farina, S. Epatha Merkerson

Votes: 27,270

30. The Practice (1997–2004)

TV-14 | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.7
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We follow the exploits and cases of defense attorneys of a Boston law firm. Bobby Donnell is the senior defense attorney and founder of the firm.

Stars: Dylan McDermott, Kelli Williams, Lara Flynn Boyle, Steve Harris

Votes: 6,437

31. The West Wing (1999–2006)

TV-14 | 44 min | Drama

8.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

Inside the lives of staffers in the West Wing of the White House.

Stars: Martin Sheen, Rob Lowe, Allison Janney, John Spencer

Votes: 51,012

32. 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  

A New Jersey mob boss, Tony Soprano, deals with personal and professional issues in his home and business life, which affects his mental state and leads him to seek professional psychiatric counseling.

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

Votes: 223,483

33. Lost (2004–2010)

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

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

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: 425,774

34. 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: 157,203

35. Mad Men (2007–2015)

TV-14 | 47 min | Drama

8.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A drama about one of New York's most prestigious ad agencies at the beginning of the 1960s, focusing on one of the firm's most mysterious but extremely talented ad executives, Donald Draper.

Stars: Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, Vincent Kartheiser, January Jones

Votes: 163,889