Friday, March 18, 2011

My 41 Favorite TV Shows of All Time (2010)

TV shows are like your kids.  Sometimes they have good days, sometimes they have bad days, and if they're really good you just hope they don't get cancelled.

Ok, that last part is probably more for just TV shows.

Unlike my children, though, I have no problem playing favorites with my television.  And since it's the time of year to update my favorite 41 TV shows of all time list, the time has come for them to fall in line.

It's important to remember that I'm not saying these are the best shows of all time, just my personal favorites (with a little weight given to cultural importance).  First of all, I haven't seen some of the shows that many of my friends rave about.  That's why you won't see "The Sopranos", "Breaking Bad", or "Dexter" on here.  And second, tastes vary so much in TV land that with the expansive pool of shows to choose from there is plenty of room for disagreement.  It's also likely I simply forgot about a show that could have made the list, so please comment with your favorites that didn't make the cut. If you clue me into one I blanked on, I'll re-edit the list to rectify my amnesia.

Here is the list with each show followed by it's movement from last year.

1. Dick Van Dyke Show (+1)
2. LOST (-1)
3. The X-Files
4. Survivor
5. Doctor Who (+4)
6. Firefly (+1)
7. The Wire (*)
8. Alfred Hitchcock Presents (-3)
9. The Cosby Show (-3)
10. The Simpsons (-2)
11. Pushing Daisies (-1)
12. Quantum Leap (+1)
13. MacGyver (+3)
14. Futurama (+3)
15. Freaks and Geeks (-3)
16. Family Ties (+2)
17. Alias (-6)
18. 24 (-4)
19. Arrested Development (+1)
20. Star Trek (+1)
21. House (+1)
22. Friends (+7)
23. Malcolm in the Middle
24. I Love Lucy
25. The Office (US) (-6)
26. The Amazing Race (-11)
27. The Monkees (-2)
28. The Twilight Zone (-2)
29. Seinfeld (-2)
30. The Mole (-2)
31. Modern Family (*)
32. The Brady Bunch (-2)
33. CSI (-2)
34. Get Smart (-2)
35. Home Improvement (-1)
36. American Idol (-1)
37. So You Think You Can Dance (+3)
38. Mythbusters (-5)
39. King of the Hill (+2)
40. Fringe (*)
41. Monk (-2)


Fresh Prince of Bel Air - Watched an episode recently, not as good as I remember.  I think I was must have been entranced by the super fly theme song.

Extreme Home Makeover - As time has passed what I originally thought was a show about helping people has evolved into a weekly ode to materialism.

Jericho - I loved that universe (and the belated finale) but its short run is not deserving of this honor.

Did I miss anything?  Anything too high?  Anything too low?  Let's discuss, shall we?


  1. I loved Alias! I think it's rated way too low!

  2. i didn't actually watch 'arrested development' until it was cancelled and came out on dvd. i must say, it is my number one, even rivaling ‘the office.’

  3. Alias, while still an amazing show, suffered from a fizzled out ending. I'd put the first few seasons of Alias up there with anything, but JJ Abrams couldn't land the plane on it. The lessons he learned through that experience paved the way for some amazing TV and Movies though.