Top Ten Greatest Television Shows of All Time

That's because they are.

Give me time to watch more of Deadwood & Veronica Mars. Start Rome, Oz, and and BBC's Robin Hood.

And I will compile a new list.
I can't adequately describe the disgust I feel when people claim anything created by Joss Whedon is in the Top 10 Greatest Shows of all time.
I agree.

And I say that as someone who loves Firefly AND Buffy.

There're just too many damn great television programs that easily make putting both shows on the list a given.

By that I mean that I wouldn't fault anyone for listing them, but you have to give it a lot of thought and consideration to put it there.
Having finally finished Season 3 of The Office.... definitely all-time favourite comedy, probably all-time favourite show. LOST closely rivals it, but at the end of the day, LOST has had a few weak episodes and aspects, and I can't really conceive what a weak episode of The Office would be like. It's the most perfect show I've seen.

Of course, if you do as much and reach as far as LOST does, you could say that weak aspects are a risk you have to take as the price for equally great aspects, and that's true, which is why they're basically neck-and-neck. The first season of LOST is close to perfect too.
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Having completed Rome, seen Season Six of 24, and realized that FX has some freaking amazing shows, I'm revising my list.

10 - Lost: We'll see how this new season pans out, but so far it's looking extraordinary. As it is, I love this show - just not as much as I love the nine that come ahead of it.

9 - Jericho: Yes, it got a little soap-opera-y some times, but every episode was riveting. The premise is scary, and the acting is scary good (see what I did there?). Watching the episodes on DVD makes it even better, as I don't have to wait a whole week to see what happens next.

8 - Invader Zim: This show is all kinds of warped hilarious. Each of the characters is uniquely twisted, and uniquely hilarious. Why was this on Nickelodeon again? Easily one of the best animated shows ever. Except perhaps . . .

7 - Avatar: The Last Airbender: What this show lacks in the "twisted, crazy humor" department, it more than makes up with its zany characters, intensely dramatic battles and plots, and a complexity that most animated shows aimed at kids lack. Truly amazing, and the best animated show I've ever seen.

6 - Battlestar Galactica: What can I say about this mesmorizing tour de force? I haven't seen the third season (waiting on the damn DVD . . . :evil: ), but what I HAVE seen in amazing television, drama near its finest. Spectacular television.

5 - The Riches: "This is Your Brain on Drugs" is simply amazing; darkly hilarious, brillaintly acted, and utterly riveting in its portrayal of both its plot and its characters: in other words, it utter typifies this show. The characters are all amazing, and amazingly well-acted (my personal favorite is Aidan Mitchell's portrayal of a fourteen-year-old cross dresser), and it's utterly fascinating to watch Doug (or is it Wayne?) get himself of out some extremely hairy situations. Truly spectacular.

4 - Damages: This freshman show should have won every award it was nominated for; that's how amazing it was. We'll see after it's second season if I can move it up - but as it is, Glenn Close's performance is nothing short of legendary, as is Ted Danson's. The plot is so tightly constructed, it reminds you (or at least, it remined me) of just how loosey-goosey shows like 24 can be with their plot. Great television.

3 - 24: This used to be my number one, but somehow, along the way, I realized that there were other, better shows out there. I'm not one of the people who hated season six, althought I won't deny that it was it's weakest season. Still, for all of its faults, 24 is amazing television, keeping me riveted and watching every minute.

2 - Firefly: What can I say about this show that hasn't already said? Nothing, really. Others have expressed their love for this show more eloquently than I could, and, quite frankly, I'm tired of writing superlative adjectives, so I'll just leave it at stunningly original, well crafted, well acted, science-fiction western fare that should have lasted a lot longer than it did.

1- Rome: Two seasons of utter brilliance, and the brightest light the TV landscape ever saw is snuffed out. Still, those two seasons are about as close to perfect as you could possibly ask for. Yes, the Antony/Cleopatra business was rushed, but they did the best they could with the time they had. The series finale - you couldn't ask for better. It closed so many doors, but left others open without making you infuriated with lack of closure (and Atia's last lines - simply stunning). I highly recommend this show to everyone I know. Watch it - you will not be disappointed. I know I wasn't.

Honorable mention: Monk, Pysch, Supernatural, Heroes, Quantum Leap, Futurama, X-Files.
Yeah, I think my list is kind of iffy, but there are a lot of TV shows and, looking back, a surprising number of good ones.

10. Doctor Who (The new series) I've never seen an episode of the original, but the modern revamping is extremely entertaining. It's whimsical and certainly not everyone's cup of tea, and it's certainly hit or miss. But when it's on, damn is it on. And the characters are always great. Both Rose and Martha were not just likable but downright lovable, and David Tennant has shaped one of the best characters on television.
9. Countdown With Keith Olbermann I think I'm the first person to put a news show in my Top 10. Countdown's the best news/opinion show on TV, honest, informative, funny when it wants to be, and downright brutal when it has to be. Yes, it offers quite a liberal perspective, but it's not as bad as anything on Fox News and it actually reports the news before it starts commenting on it. Countdown has been very formative in my political development and I look forward to it every weekday.
8. The Daily Show I've been watching the Daily Show for years. It's great political humor and is surprisingly informative. And Jon Stewart not only makes fun of the news, but he knows what he's talking about.
7. Aqua Teen Hunger Force Quite possibly the first [adult swim] show I ever watched. It's hilarious, absurd humor about talking fast food. It's position in my list is not entirely representative of itself, though. I'm considering this pick as being representative of that whole first crop of [adult swim] shows. (Harvey Birdman, Sealab, The Brak Show.) They did an incredible job of showing that the bizarre and totally original can get their time on American television, all be it for eleven minutes at a time, at midnight.
6. LOST (Season 1) I've found Seasons 2 and 3 to be a bit disappointing, but that first season of LOST was pure magic. From the moment that the survivors of the crash here something in the forest and realize that they're not alone to what is quite possible the greatest cliffhanger(s) in television history, Season 1 was a great ride and I couldn't get enough of it. The first Locke episode, the discovery of The Hatch, the scene during the season finale where we see them all boarding the plane. (The part where Jack and Locke look at each other still gives me chills.) It was just excellent TV.
5. The Twilight Zone I remember when we first started getting the Sci-Fi Channel last year and they just happened to air a two-day marathon of The Twilight Zone. I love this show. It's so addictive. The episodes range from silly to downright disturbing. The show only ran for like, three years but there are so many episodes of it. And they play them all the time. I don't know, it's just satisfying in a really simple way. And it would never work today. Every Twilight Zone-eque show I've seen just feels cheap and off.

By the way, I want parodies of the Rod Serling openers to become the new David Caruso thing.

"Philip Thurman is a normal man who lives in a normal town who's attempting right now, with great difficulty, to take what he thinks will be a normal ****. But what Mr. Thurman doesn't know is that this is no normal bathroom and this is no normal toilet. In fact, this crapper flushes straight into a sewer known as...

The Twilight Zone"
4. The Simpsons (Seasons 1-11) No explanation needed. Classic, hilarious TV and what I've only recently realized is a brilliant satire of American society.
3. Futurama Yes, I think the 3 or 4 seasons of Futurama is better than The Simpsons. It's great comedy and distinguishes itself from The Simpsons for one specific reason: I've never cared about the characters on The Simpsons as much as I've cared about the characters in Futurama. And that's intentional. Futurama actually made it a point to build up it's characters and allow continuing subplots, something rarely seen in animated television. Futurama episodes have left me feeling quite emotional at times and I really do care about whether Leela and Fry get together.
2. Arrested Development Again, a no-brainer. Some of the smartest humor and most outrageous characters I've ever seen. Just incredible television. I hope the rumors that they're writing a movie are true.
1. South Park South Park is endlessly enjoyable and some of the best satire ever produced. It may not pack as many laughs into each episode as other shows, but when a joke hits you, they make sure it really hits you. Just this past season: "naggers" on Wheel of Fortune, Hillary Clinton being told that there's a "snuke in her snizz", Mrs. Garrison screaming "THIS IS LESBOS!", the revelation that Bono is "the world's biggest piece of crap", Stan and Kyle getting a million points on Guitar Hero and seeing the message "YOU. ARE. ***S!" No other moments on TV recently have made me laugh so hard. Good job, Trey and Matt. You guys are truly geniuses.
3. Futurama Yes, I think the 3 or 4 seasons of Futurama is better than The Simpsons. It's great comedy and distinguishes itself from The Simpsons for one specific reason: I've never cared about the characters on The Simpsons as much as I've cared about the characters in Futurama. And that's intentional. Futurama actually made it a point to build up it's characters and allow continuing subplots, something rarely seen in animated television. Futurama episodes have left me feeling quite emotional at times and I really do care about whether Leela and Fry get together.

5 seasons. BUT only 4 season boxsets as they added some of of 2 to 1 and so forth.
Nope, mole. That's wrong.

Season Five is the chopped up movies.

There were only four seasons on fox.
Nope, mole. That's wrong.

Season Five is the chopped up movies.

There were only four seasons on fox.;5

If you look there is 5 seasons. I'll give you 4 and 5 were in production at the same time , but besides dvds most places list it as season 5 , so the movies would be season 6

More season 5 listings
My favorites are mostly cartoons.

1. Venture Bros. - This show was tailor-made for fanboys.
2. Metalocalypse - Hardcore!
3. Aqua Teen Hunger Force - Hilariousness!
4. Family Guy - Hilariousness!
5. Robot Chicken - Hilariousness!
6. Chapelle's Show - Hilariousness!
7. Ninja Warrior - Best game show ever.
8. That '70s Show - Best sitcom ever.
9. Beavis & Butt-head - Extremely stupid. Extremely funny.
10. Spider-Man TAS ('94) - Best comic book cartoon ever.
Finally compiled my list. Obviously, this list is comprised of only shows I've seen. And there are plenty of shows that didn't make the list that I still adore. I'm compiling spin-offs together, as well.

Honorable Mention: Boy Meets World - I grew up with this show, and honestly, it's probably the best coming-of-age show I've ever seen. It was heart-warming, hilarious, and dealt with issues that my friends and I had to deal with. And George Feeny is one of the greatest characters created on television.

Honorable Mention: Veronica Mars - A neo noir High School detective show. Buffy mixed with Bogart. It was genius, and Veronica Mars is one of the smartest characters to grace the small screen.

Honorable Mention: Firefly - It gets honorable mention because, let's face it, it was only 14 episodes. However, those 14 episodes turned the genre on it's ear and every character on the Serenity was endearing. I felt for every one of them. It's a damn shame it was canceled so early.

10. Cowboy Bebop - Bebop makes the list because, in my mind, it's the best animated show ever created for television. It was Firefly before Firefly existed and it's one of the few shows that told it's complete story. And it did it in just 26 episodes. Brilliant.

9.. Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel - For all of you haters out there. . .you're insane. Buffy did what few other shows had done before it; it created a powerful, female protagonist. It also threw the horror genre on it's head and kicked it across the room. It used the horror genre as a metaphor for growing up. And it's spinoff, Angel, was the perfect example of how to do a modern noir show.

8. Cheers and Fraiser - Cheers and Fraiser perfected the character comedy. Each show focused on one thing or person (The bar and Fraiser Crane respectively) and how that thing or person affected everyone around them. Both shows had some of the best character interactions of any show I've ever seen, and each character was memorable.

7. Roseanne - Roseanne is probably the perfect sitcom. It dealt with a lot of middle class issues before anyone else dared to touch them, it had a strong woman lead that the other characters revolved around, and had an endearing cast.

6. LOST - As others have said, Cinematic Television. That's what LOST is. It's mysteries are intriging, it's characters are compelling, it has a clear ending in sight, and will be remembered as both a pioneer in changing in television landscape, but also as one of the greatest serial mystery shows ever created.

5.I Love Lucy - The show that pretty much created the sitcom genre. To this day, I still find it hilarious and it's four main characters (Lucy, Ricky, Ethel and Fred) are television icons.

4. MASH - It turned a WAR into a COMEDY. There's not really much else to say, other than that it did so phenomenally. It is also noteworthy for having probably the most heart-wrenching finale of any TV series I've ever seen.

3. Star Trek: The Original Series - The birth of the modern Sci-Fi show. It was also notable for it's optimism about mankind's future, and how it dealt with mankind's struggle between logic and emotion; this conflict none more evident then in it's three main characters Kirk, Spock and McCoy.

2. All in the Family - A show that dared to challenge the rules of television, nothing has ever been the same after the character of Archie Bunker lit up the small screen. It examined racism, sexism, homophopia and other controversial issues that, even today, still hold up. And, best of all, it did so in a light hearted manner through one of television's greatest characters.

1. The Sopranos - The Godfather of television, both figuratively and literally. Never have I loved a blatantly antagonistic character so much than Tony Soprano. And let's not forget that, although it dealt with the Mafia, it dealt with family issues, psychological issues, and business issues unparalleled by any show that came before it. In my mind, The Sopranos truly is the greatest show I've ever seen and I don't see any show coming close anytime soon.
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The Wire
The Sopranos
Six Feet Under
Mad Men
Breaking Bad
Prison Break

The Office UK
Arrested Development
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Peep Show
The Office US
Parks and Recreation
Eastbound and Down

Batman the Animated Series
The Simpsons
Avatar the Last Airbender
Justice League Unlimited
Death Note
Fullmetal Alchemist
Neon Genesis Evangelion
Invader Zim
The Venture Bros.

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*hugs skotti*

*both sides recoil, looking slightly embarassed*

Heh, I guess we're not there yet, but you certainly moved a big step closer.

Wait... PM and I agreed on something? *checks to see if cats and dogs are sleeping together*

Okay, finally doing my lists;

Top 10 Live Action TV

10. Bones (Witty & charming, with likable characters and entertaining stories)
9. Walking Dead (Almost didn't have this on the list. I've really enjoyed what I've seen so far, but so far it's only been 6 episodes.)
8. Miami Vice (I've been rewatching this lately, while the fashions haven't stood the test of time, the stories were generally very well done in a crime drama)
7. Fawlty Towers (Yeah, I went there. Still one of the funniest shows ever)
6. Deadwood (I just loved the more gritty handling of the western genre, topped off with great acting)
5. Quantum Leap (Another show I've been rewatching, I don't know how much of it is witty storytelling and how much is just Backula and Stockwell's charm)
4. Mad Men (Seriously, do I need to explain?)
3. Monty Python's Flying Circus (I was worried that this was nostalgia influenced, but after a while, I stopped worrying and went with my gut)
2. X-Files (To me, this show, and to a lesser extent, Millenium, showed me that TV could be more than canned laugh tracks and feeble melodrama)
1. Lost (I still think this is one of the best written shows)

Top 10 Western Animated

10. BtAS/StAS/JL/JLU (I know, it's an about face from some of the stuff I've said before. I gave it a new chance, and realized Dini was sharing the Silver Age, not ripping it off)
9. Mission Hill (Love this show, and it's prefect reflection of the slacker GenX mindset of the late 90's)
8. X-Men Evo/Wolverine & the X-Men (I packed these together, since it's a spiritual series, and I found these to be significantly better than the 90's X-Men)
7. Hysteria (If you ever watched it, you'll know why it's in the Top 10)
6. Masters of the Universe (the 2003 version. A great example of how well a reimagining of an old franchise can be done)
5. Young Justice (This has to be one of the best DCAU series of all time)
4. Kim Possible (**** you, it was awesome, and you know it)
3. Gargoyles (this cartoon showed what Disney could really do when it put its mind to it)
2. Animaniacs (If you don't love this, you're a part of the Rebel Alliance, and a traitor)
1. Avatar the Last Airbender (I can't love this show anymore than I do right now, it's the perfect blend of animation, humor, adventure, and well, everything)

Top 10 Anime (Series only, no OVA's or Movies)

10. Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt (pure, and classic Gainx weirdness. 'Nuff said)
9. Cowboy Bebop (It's a classic, I'd have put it higher, but there are other shows that have proved to be even better than this one)
8. Paranoia Agent/Boogie Pop Phantom (These are a tie, they both deal with similar ideas, yet approach them in entirely different and refreshing ways)
7. Blue Drop (When I heard about it being yuri, I was expecting the usual moe-blob/fanservice anime, instead, it's a layered sci-fi story that just happens to be about a pair of lesbians)
6. Ranma 1/2 (I'm not sure how much of this is nostalgia glasses, but it's a fun and quite charming series)
5. Bakemonogatari (Love, love, love this series, like the OAV FLCL, it uses a lot of experimental animation techniques)
4. K-ON! (Yes, I know it's another moe-blob anime, but it's just so wonderful)
3. Haibane Renmei (This is a very touching and sweet series, it has such a great imagination)
2. Neon Genesis Evangelion (It was the textbook deconstruction of the Perfect Hero story, it still stands as one of the best animes, ever)
1. Kakume Shojou Utena (This was a definitive anime for me, it dealt with love, gender roles, drama. It's still my favorite.)
Project, why do you love Prison Break so much?

The last four on my drama list are placeholders.

But I do think the first two and a half seasons are really good.
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I just checked my list posted back in 2007 and it is atrocious. It was before I had seen THE WIRE. Or the third season of HEROES.

I have seen so many shows, and there are so many good ones, it's hard to make a list.

So, instead, here are 10 shows that are currently on the air (to the best of my knowledge) that are a lot of fun (in alphabetical order):


I would list BATMAN: THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD but I've not seen it in ages because I thought it was off the air but it seems there's new ones? I dunno. I have to double-check. Also, THE MENTALIST is fun.

I should say that I've yet to see certain hit shows like MAD MEN or BOARDWALK EMPIRE. So something not being on my list might be due to my not seeing it.
Man, I want to update my original list but there would be so many "Seasons X to X of this show" that it would get crazy. Seasons one to three of LOST would easily be #1 on such a list, but if I had to rank the complete series it couldn't even place in the ten. Exact same with Smallville. The US Office would probably be my number one, up to and including the the first half of Season six, but I haven't seen the second half or any of 7 yet. The Simpsons requires no explanation in this area.

There's also British stuff like Extras, which is phenomenal but should count as a miniseries and is thus a whole different animal.

The Office, Friends, Frasier, Seinfeld, Arrested Development and Dexter would be a good representation of my favourite shows. I'll take a closer look later.
I'm basing this off of what I find to be the most enjoyable and important to me. Not necessarily the best quality.

10. East Bound and Down
9. Dragon Ball Z
8. Saturday Night Live
7. The Sopranos
6. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
5. Dexter
4. South Park
3. Arrested Development
2. Justice League Unlimited
1. Scrubs

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