Television Shows That I Have Watched (Best to Worst)by ErnestofAus | created - 29 Mar 2016 | updated - 20 Jul 2017 | Public
In a television drama series, I mostly enjoy a good arcing narrative with meaningful character and plot development.
For a comedy series or a sitcom, I enjoy a series with funny jokes that generally use physical and observational comedy and break social norms but I enjoy a range of comedy genres.
I enjoy watching classic series as well as newer ones and do not limit myself to just the high budget and heavily promoted programs.
As a rule for my list, I will only be adding series that I have either watched in their entirety, or for a long series, only if I have watched over 30 episodes.
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1. Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000– )
TV-MA | 28 min | Comedy
The life and times of Larry David and the predicaments he gets himself into with his friends and complete strangers.
My rating 10/10. This is possibly the funniest show I have watched. It is hard to believe that most of the dialogue is improvised. It is my first go to show for a couple of 20min episodes to watch and have a laugh. Completed first watch through in 2013. Completed second watch through in 2014.
2. The Wire (2002–2008)
TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
The Baltimore drug scene, as seen through the eyes of drug dealers and law enforcement.
My rating 10/10. This show is a masterpiece. The story telling is like reading a well constructed novel that doesn't rush to get to the story's climax, rather it builds upon the subplots and character development for many episodes before reaching a conclusion. My only issue with this show is that most shows feel bland in comparison and are now sometimes difficult to enjoy. Ranking of my favourite seasons: 4, 1, 5, 3, 2 (All of the seasons were amazing!) Began watching 2010. Completed first full watch through in late 2015- early 2016.
3. Breaking Bad (2008–2013)
TV-MA | 49 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
A high school chemistry teacher diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer turns to manufacturing and selling methamphetamine in order to secure his family's future.
My rating 10/10. This show is brilliant and pretty close to perfection in terms of plot, acting and cinematography. I enjoyed this so much that I watched it twice successively. Completed first watch through in 2012-2013. Completed second watch through in 2013.
4. The Sopranos (1999–2007)
TV-MA | 55 min | Crime, Drama
New Jersey mob boss Tony Soprano deals with personal and professional issues in his home and business life that affect his mental state, leading him to seek professional psychiatric counseling.
My rating 9.9/10 The show brilliantly captures the personal conflicts and anxieties experienced by a mob boss while showing a mixture of both his personal life and gang dealings. Gandolfini's performance throughout the series is one of the best I have seen, and by the fourth season, you can work out his thoughts from his facial expressions. The final 3 seasons were the best in my opinion. A major gripe with the show is that new characters appear in episodes as the actors are cast, but in regards to the plot, we are meant to imagine that they were there the whole time. Sometimes the significance of new characters roles in the mob or which family they are from is hard to work out, but looking up this information on the internet will usually result in spoilers. Completed first watch through 2013-2016
5. Seinfeld (1989–1998)
TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy
The continuing misadventures of neurotic New York City stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld and his equally neurotic New York City friends.
My rating 9.9/10 This show is hilarious and original. Conventionally filmed sitcoms don't get better than this! Just too bad that they used a laugh track throughout the series. Completed first watch through in 2015.
6. Arrested Development (2003– )
TV-14 | 22 min | Comedy
Level-headed son Michael Bluth takes over family affairs after his father is imprisoned. But the rest of his spoiled, dysfunctional family are making his job unbearable.
My rating 9.8/10 Bizarre comedy series about a dysfunctional family with arcing episodes. Completed first watch through in May, 2016.
7. Terriers (2010)
TV-MA | 45 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
Ex-cop and recovering alcoholic Hank Dolworth partners with his best friend, former criminal Britt Pollack, in an unlicensed private investigation business.
My rating 9.6/10 Terriers is a brilliant PI themed drama that was cancelled after its first season. I think it definitely had potential to be up there with Breaking Bad if it found its following sooner. Completed first watch through in June, 2016.
8. Six Feet Under (2001–2005)
TV-MA | 55 min | Comedy, Drama
A chronicle of the lives of a dysfunctional family who run an independent funeral home in Los Angeles.
My rating 9.5/10 Very captivating show, but this is not for everyone. Completed first watch through in October, 2016
9. Pushing Daisies (2007–2009)
TV-PG | 44 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy
A pie-maker, with the power to bring dead people back to life, solves murder mysteries with his alive-again childhood sweetheart, a cynical private investigator, and a lovesick waitress.
My rating 9.5/10 Completed first watch through in March, 2017.
10. Fawlty Towers (1975–1979)
TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy
Hotel owner Basil Fawlty's incompetence, short fuse, and arrogance form a combination that ensures accidents and trouble are never far away.
My rating 9.5/10 A truly hilarious classic sitcom. Some shockingly funny moments within the series, the humor is intensified by Cleese's portrayal of a rude and narcissistic hotel owner/operator and the unthinkable ways he treats his guests and staff. Completed first watch through in 2016.
11. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2005– )
TV-MA | 22 min | Comedy
Five friends with big egos and slightly arrogant attitudes are the proprietors of an Irish pub in Philadelphia.
My rating 9.5/10 A bit like an adult's only Seinfeld with a mix of physical comedy and shock humor. Watched seasons 1-10 in 2015-2016.
12. The Larry Sanders Show (1992–1998)
TV-MA | 30 min | Comedy
A comedic behind the scenes look at a late night talk show.
My rating 9.4/10 This is a very solid show with some hilarious moments. The show starts out well but the final three seasons were really great. Completed first watch through in April, 2016.
13. Battlestar Galactica (2004–2009)
TV-14 | 44 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
When an old enemy, the Cylons, resurface and obliterate the 12 colonies, the crew of the aged Galactica protect a small civilian fleet - the last of humanity - as they journey toward the fabled 13th colony, Earth.
My rating 9.3/10 Don't be fooled by the show's name, this is a very well-written drama series that should be enjoyed by all. There were some plot holes and some indecisiveness with some of the character development over the course of the series, but it is still a very solid show overall. Completed first watch through in 2010.
14. The Shield (2002–2008)
TV-MA | 47 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
Follows the lives and cases of a dirty Los Angeles Police Department cop and the unit under his command.
My rating 9.2/10 Gritty police drama. The final few seasons were really top notch. Completed first watch through in 2009.
15. Damages (2007–2012)
TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
A law school graduate becomes the protégée of a successful high-stakes litigator.
My rating 9.2/10. Completed first watch through in March-May 2017.
16. Deadwood (2004–2006)
TV-MA | 55 min | Crime, Drama, History
A show set in the late 1800s, revolving around the characters of Deadwood, South Dakota; a town of deep corruption and crime.
My rating 9.2/10 The show ended abruptly and so the plot was not completed. There are some questionable choices in the writing of the show but it is still solid overall. The cinematography is excellent. Completed first watch through in 2014.
17. Louie (2010–2015)
TV-MA | 22 min | Comedy, Drama
The life of Louie C.K., a divorced comedian living in New York with two kids.
My rating 9.1/10 Louie C.K.'s show is a very different approach for a comedy series. Some episodes offer little or no comedy, but still are thoroughly entertaining. The show is similar in ways to Curb Your Enthusiasm, but it is very different and unique in its own way. Completed first watch through in 2015.
18. Firefly (2002–2003)
TV-14 | 44 min | Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi
Five hundred years in the future, a renegade crew aboard a small spacecraft tries to survive as they travel the unknown parts of the galaxy and evade warring factions as well as authority agents out to get them.
My rating 9.1/10 Who doesn't like space cowboys? The show was a little sketchy in parts but had a lot of potential to be a top notch series if given more episodes to develop. The single season is solid, however, and it is a shame that the show was cancelled too soon. Completed first watch through in 2013.
19. Wonderfalls (2004)
TV-PG | 60 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy
Jaye Tyler is a loner living in Niagara Falls who, after graduating college, has fallen into a care-free comfortable rut living in a trailer park and working as a retail clerk in the Falls ... See full summary »
My rating 9.1/10 Completed first watch through in February, 2017.
20. Freaks and Geeks (1999–2000)
TV-14 | 44 min | Comedy, Drama
A high school mathlete starts hanging out with a group of burnouts while her younger brother navigates his freshman year.
My rating 9.0/10 Completed first watch through in March, 2017.
21. Chappelle's Show (2003–2006)
TV-MA | 22 min | Comedy, Music
Comedian Dave Chappelle hosts this sketch-comedy show that parodies many of the nuances of race and culture.
My rating 8.9/10 Really good sketch comedy show. Completed first watch through in 2012.
22. Police Squad! (1982)
TV-PG | 24 min | Comedy, Crime
Sight gags and non-sequiturs dominate this spoof of police dramas. The six episodes formed the basis for the very successful "Naked Gun" film franchise.
My rating 8.8/10 Slapstick comedy at its best. There were only 6 episodes (and 3 movies after the show's cancellation) but all prove to be hilarious parodies of classic noir police series such as M Squad. Completed first watch through in 2016.
23. Dead Like Me (2003–2004)
TV-14 | 60 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy
After being hit on the head by a toilet seat, a young temp clerk becomes a grim reaper in death.
My rating 8.7/10 Completed fist watch through in April, 2017.
24. Legit (2013–2014)
TV-MA | 30 min | Comedy
Jim and his put upon friends try to learn what it means to be a good person.
My rating 8.6/10 Very funny show about an out of work Australian comedian living in Hollywood. The show is similar to Louie. Watched through in 2016.
25. Profit (1996– )
90 min | Drama
Jim Profit works for a multinational company, and isn't above using any means necessary to get ahead, and that includes bribery, blackmail, intimidation, extortion, and even murder. Now ... See full summary »
My rating 8.5/10 Watched through in May, 2017.
26. Rome (2005–2007)
TV-MA | 90 min | Action, Drama, History
A down-to-earth account of the lives of both illustrious and ordinary Romans set in the last days of the Roman Republic.
My rating 8.4/10 Well made show but it seemed to be missing something. It is too bad it was cancelled too soon to reach its potential. Completed first watch through in 2012.
27. 30 Rock (2006–2013)
TV-14 | 22 min | Comedy
Liz Lemon (Tina Fey), head writer of the sketch comedy show "TGS with Tracy Jordan", must deal with an arrogant new boss and a crazy new star, all while trying to run a successful television show without losing her mind.
My rating 8.3/10 Watched through in 2015-2017.
28. Better Off Ted (2009–2010)
TV-PG | 30 min | Comedy, Sci-Fi
In a science-based company, a manager tries to keep control of his scientists while being pressured by his shrewd boss.
My rating 8.3/10 Funny corporate company satire. Similar to Arrested Development. Completed watch through in 2016.
29. The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret (2009–2016)
TV-MA | 25 min | Comedy
Todd Margaret is an American who takes a job running the London sales team for an energy drink. He has no experience with British culture, knows nothing about sales and has only one employee, Dave.
My rating 8.2/10 Some out there hilarious moments, but some just annoying. Probably the most surreal arcing comedy series I have seen. Completed first watch through in 2016.
30. Bored to Death (2009–2011)
TV-MA | 28 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
A well-meaning but struggling writer decides to lead a sort of double life by pretending to be a private detective using the methods he read about in old detective novels.
My rating 8.2/10 Decent show with hilarious moments and a quirky spin on the P.I. theme. I felt the supporting cast were far more entertaining than the main character, who was annoying at times. Season 3 was the best of all the seasons as it began to arc the episodes, however, it is a shame that the show had no real ending. Completed first watch through in 2016.
31. Mr. Bean (1990–1995)
TV-G | 350 min | Comedy, Family
Bumbling, childlike Mr. Bean has trouble completing the simplest of tasks in day-to-day life, but his perseverance and resourcefulness frequently allow him to find ingenious ways around problems.
My rating 8.2/10
32. Party Down (2009–2010)
TV-14 | 30 min | Comedy
A group of actors move to Los Angeles to make it big, but end up working as caterers.
My rating 8.1/10 Completed first watch through in March, 2017.
33. Futurama (1999–2013)
TV-14 | 22 min | Animation, Comedy, Sci-Fi
Philip J. Fry, a pizza delivery boy, is accidentally frozen in 1999 and thawed out on New Year's Eve 2999.
My rating 8.0/10
34. The Adventures of Lano & Woodley (1997–1999)
30 min | Comedy
The bizarre misadventures of two no-hopers who share a flat
My rating 7.9/10 A funny and fairly unique Australian comedy. Completed first watch through in 2005.
35. Friends (1994–2004)
TV-14 | 22 min | Comedy, Romance
Follows the personal and professional lives of six twenty to thirty-something-year-old friends living in Manhattan.
My rating 7.9/10 Watched most episodes but it seems to be a slightly overrated series in my opinion. It is decent, and some of the jokes are funny but I feel like some of the "jokes" aren't funny and audience's have been confused by the laugh track in many cases. Still one of the better standard type sitcom's around.
36. Caprica (2009–2010)
TV-14 | 60 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
Two families, the Graystones and the Adamas, live together on a peaceful planet known as Caprica, where a startling breakthrough in artificial intelligence brings about unforeseen consequences.
My rating 7.8/10 Wasn't as good as Battlestar Gallactica but still worthy of a purchase. I would have liked to see the second season they had planned had it not been cancelled. Completed first watch through in 2013.
37. Key and Peele (2012–2015)
TV-14 | 30 min | Short, Action, Adventure
Project sees Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele in front of a live studio audience bantering about a topic weaved between filmed shorts and sketches.
My rating 7.7/10 Good sketch comedy, which is similar to Chappelle's Show. Some good parodies of TV shows and movies. Watched Seasons 1-4 in 2013-2014
38. Russell Coight's All Aussie Adventures (2001–2018)
22 min | Adventure, Comedy
Slapstick mockumentary about an enthusiastic Aussie wildlife expert, Russell Coight, whose haphazard and inept adventuring style ensures that he is a danger to anything and anyone he meets, not to mention himself.
My rating 7.4/10 Good Aussie humor.
39. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990–1996)
TV-PG | 22 min | Comedy
A streetwise, poor young man from Philadelphia is sent by his mother to live with his aunt, uncle and cousins in their Bel-Air mansion.
My rating 7.2/10 Completed first watch through 2008.
40. The Bible (2013)
TV-14 | 440 min | Action, Drama, War
A religious dramatic miniseries about God's creation and physical landmark events leading up to the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
My rating 7.1/10 Good but somewhat rushed gloss over the major events of the Bible. Completed first watch through in 2016.
41. Prison Break (2005–2017)
TV-14 | 44 min | Action, Crime, Drama
Due to a political conspiracy, an innocent man is sent to death row and his only hope is his brother, who makes it his mission to deliberately get himself sent to the same prison in order to break the both of them out, from the inside.
My rating 7.0/10 Not a bad show, but very cliche and predictable. Season 1 was pretty good overall, maybe a dragged a little but the series seemed short of good ideas after the first season ended. Completed first watch through in 2008. Completed second watch through in 2011.
42. Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge (1994–1995)
TV-14 | 45 min | Comedy, Talk-Show
Alan Partridge hosts his own chat show on the BBC. He insults and belittles almost all of his guests and is humiliated by the rest.
My rating 6.8/10 Pretty funny handful of episodes about a highly narcissistic talk show host. The humor in it is in the cruel way Partridge treats his (supposedly) celebrity guests and his only concerns being about his own image and celebrity status. Completed first watch through in 2016.
43. Horace and Pete (2016)
TV-MA | 67 min | Comedy, Drama
Louis C.K.'s Eugene O'Neill-esque dramedic web series about two brothers, introverted Horace and mentally ill Pete, the current owners of their family's Irish bar "Horace and Pete's", and their dysfunctional family and friends.
My rating 6.5/10 Some funny and unique conversations which are used as the story telling method throughout the show. Unfortunately, there are some scenes that are just off that cause me to regret paying for the show. Completed first watch through in November, 2016.
44. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (2008–2009)
TV-PG | 60 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
Set after the events in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), Sarah Connor and her son, John, try to stay under-the-radar from the government, as they plot to destroy the computer network, Skynet, in hopes of preventing Armageddon.
My rating 6.0/10 Had potential to be much better. The pilot was intriguing but the rest of the series was a let down. Completed first watch through in 2010.
45. Spartacus (2010–2013)
TV-MA | 55 min | Action, Adventure, Biography
The life of Spartacus, the gladiator who lead a rebellion against the Romans. From his time as an ally of the Romans, to his betrayal and becoming a gladiator, to the rebellion he leads and its ultimate outcome.
My rating 5.5/10 Pretty average show. It appears that they spent a lot on the special effects budget but not the writing department. The show overcompensates its lack of plot with strong violence and sex scenes. Completed first watch through 2013.
46. How I Met Your Mother (2005–2014)
TV-14 | 22 min | Comedy, Romance
A father recounts to his children, through a series of flashbacks, the journey he and his four best friends took leading up to him meeting their mother.
My rating 5.5/10 Generally OK show but very much a less funny rip off of Friends. Completed first watch through in 2015.
47. The Dana Carvey Show (1996– )
30 min | Comedy
Riffs on pop culture, politics and even the show's own sponsors.
My rating 5.5/10 A bit of a mixed bag of some funny and some not so funny sketches. I really enjoyed Carvey's impersonations when he appeared on The Larry Sanders Show but in his own show, he didn't do as many good ones as I had expected and the show remains unfunny in a lot of the skits. Completed first watch through in 2016.
48. Arrow (2012– )
TV-14 | 42 min | Action, Adventure, Crime
Spoiled billionaire playboy Oliver Queen is missing and presumed dead when his yacht is lost at sea. He returns five years later a changed man, determined to clean up the city as a hooded vigilante armed with a bow.
My rating 5.0/10 There were some interesting things going on in this show initially but after watching a few seasons, I became increasingly annoyed at some of the indecisive writing choices in regards to the character developments and the plot choices and " plot twists," which are some of the cheesiest and worst I have seen. I know that comic book characters can get away with some cheesy plots but the shear amount of corny events on this show by the end of season 3 has made me give up on it. (I cannot mention these without spoiling the show). Watched seasons 1-3 in 2015.
49. The Big Bang Theory (2007–2019)
TV-14 | 22 min | Comedy, Romance