Sunday, December 8, 2013

The Lists: Best TV Shows

The Wire. Image courtesy of HBO.
The first of my all-time lists is my favorite television shows. Unlike the medium of film, which has been producing great works of art for nearly a century, TV has come into its own as a great art form in recent years. The past decade has been referred to by many as the "golden age of TV."

So, it should come as no surprise that many of my favorite TV shows were on the air during the 21st century. Below, I have listed my top 25 television shows as well as five great made-for-TV films or miniseries.

However, it should be noted that there are a number of shows considered great that I have not yet seen. Those include: "Homeland," "The Good Wife," "Six Feet Under," "Deadwood," "Boardwalk Empire," "The Walking Dead," "The Killing," "Game of Thrones" and "Justified." I'll eventually get around to these shows and, once I do, I'll add them to the list if I believe they deserve a spot.

In the meantime, my favorite miniseries or TV movies include:
5. I, Claudius (1976, Herbert Wise)
4. No Direction Home: Bob Dylan (2005, Martin Scorsese)
3. Mildred Pierce (2011, Todd Haynes)
2. Duel (1971, Steven Spielberg)
1. Angels in America (2003, Mike Nichols)

And my top 25 TV shows are:
25. Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000-2011, Larry David)
24. Sex and the City (1998-2004, Darren Star)
23. Masterpiece Theater (1971-present, Frank Gillard and Christopher Sarson)
22. M.A.S.H. (1972-1983, Larry Gelbart)
21. The Jeffersons (1975-1985, Don Nicholl, Michael Ross and Bernie West)
20. Sanford and Son (1972-1977, Norman Lear and Bud Yorkin)
19. Angel (1999-2004, Joss Whedon)
18. Once and Again (1999-2002, Marshall Hershkovitz and Edward Zwick)
17. The X Files (1993-2002, Chris Carter)
16. The Simpsons ((1989-present, Matt Groening)
15. Saturday Night Live (1975-present, Lorne Michaels)
14. The Cosby Show (1984-1992, Bill Cosby, Ed Weinberger and Michael Leeson)
13. South Park (1997-present, Trey Parker and Matt Stone)
12. Seinfeld (1989-1998, Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David)
11. The Twilight Zone (1959-1964, Rod Serling)
10. The Wonder Years (1988-1993, Carol Black and Neal Marlens)
  9. House of Cards (U.S. version) (2013-present, Beau Willimon)
  8. Buffy, the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003, Joss Whedon)
  7. The Americans (2013-present, Joe Weisberg)
  6. True Detective (2014-present, Nic Pizzolatto)
  5. Twin Peaks (1990-1991, David Lynch and Mark Frost)
  4. Breaking Bad (2008-2013, Vince Gilligan)
  3. Mad Men (2007-2015, Matthew Weiner)
  2. The Sopranos (1999-2007, David Chase)
  1. The Wire (2002-2008, David Simon)

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